Now, it appears to analysts as though the disaster afflicting Libya — brought about in large part by the Obama administration and its allies in Europe and among Islamic autocracies — may be on the verge of being replicated in Syria. Of course, the countries and the wars are different in some respects, but the parallels between what is going on in Syria and what happened in Libya are undeniable. And those links are raising alarm bells — especially considering the sizeable Syrian Christian population and the current state of affairs in Libya,which continues to deteriorate.
In Libya, as The New Americandocumented extensively, the Obama administration decided to openly side with leaders of al-Qaedaand other jihadist groups — many of which boasted publicly during the conflict that they had recently been fighting against American troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. DictatorMoammar Gadhafi, who served as a key U.S. government ally in its terror war until falling out of favor, was eventually brutalized and summarily executed after his regime was pounded into the ground by Obama-backed jihadist rebels and overwhelming American air power.
“Absolutely there are parallels,” explained John Rosenthal, a Europe-based journalist and author of The Jihadist Plot: The Untold Story of Al-Qaeda and the Libyan Rebellion. In his book, Rosenthal documents in great detail how, in the Libyan conflict, the Obama administration literally switched sides in the “war on terror,” joining with self-styled al-Qaeda leaders against a former terror-war allywho was hard at work battling the very same Islamic extremists that the U.S. government had supposedly been pursuing for a decade.
Rosenthal told The New American that the Obama administration’s Syria policy “is a continuation of its Libya policy”: siding with Islamists against secular regimes that helped the U.S. government in the terror war. The international conditions, however, are different this time, he added, primarily because the Russian government has refused to cooperate with pro-regime change forces in the United Nations Security Council under the so-called responsibility to protect doctrine.
Assad may not have been as helpful toU.S. authorities in the terror war as Gadhafi, whose “apostate” regime had also become a primary target of Islamic extremists; however, The New American’s Michael Tennant showed last year that the brutal Syrian despot was indeed a U.S. ally — helping torture and extract information from terror suspects handed over by American officials, for example. “There’s a different leader in Syria now,” then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in early 2011. “Many of the members of Congress of both parties who have gone to Syria in recent months have said they believe he’s a reformer.” Indeed, Syria was one of the “most common” destinations for rendered U.S. terror-war suspects, according to multiple reports.
“During the time of the U.S. presence in Iraq, the Syrians were often accused of not doing enough to stem the flowof al-Qaeda-affiliated fighters into the country,” Rosenthal continued. “But the very nature of the criticism shows that vis-à-vis al-Qaeda, the U.S. and Syria were at the time fundamentally on the same side.In the meanwhile, this is not the case, because we changed sides.”
As far as the Syrian rebels, countless sources — even including the establishment media during the latest conflict — have documented their jihadist credentials. The Obama administration officially designated the Jabhat al-Nusra a terrorist organization — an al-Qaeda-linked group that analysts say is among the most effective fighting forces in Syria. For Rosenthal, however, the designation “represents a sort of sleight of hand in this regard,” he explained.
“When the listing was made public, many of the other Syrian rebel brigades responded by vociferously protesting under the motto ‘we are all Jabhat al-Nusra’,” said Rosenthal, who documented the Libyan rebels’ deep connections to global jihad,using official sources, court records, police reports, and European news reports. “And they are right. It is simply not possible to support the rebellion and not be providing de facto support for Jabhat al-Nusra, which is not only an integral part of the rebellion, but arguably its vanguard.”
Meanwhile, Secretary of State John Kerry continued to claim that less than one-fourth of rebel forces are “extremists,” an estimate widely dismissed by experts and even U.S. officials. Rosenthal called it “ridiculously low.” Instead, “100 percent would be closer to the truth,” he explained, citing the names of rebel brigades and publicly available evidence. “One need only look at the videos posted by the rebel formations themselves, which regularly show them displaying the black flags of jihad and brutally executing detainees — both soldiers and civilians — in the style made famous by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and al-Qaeda in Iraq.”
Indeed, as The New Americanreported yesterday, the supposed “estimates” by the administration claiming such a low percentage of “extremists” are calculated by assuming that rebels not fighting directly for al-Qaeda are “moderates.” The Free Syrian Army, though considered the primary “moderate” fighting force worthy of U.S. taxpayer support, is actually dominated by the Muslim Brotherhood and other hardcore Islamists. The pro-rebel Al Jazeera even reported that the FSA has been selling foreign-provided weaponsto al-Qaeda leaders in Syria.
“Talk of ‘moderate’ rebels on the part of people like John Kerry or Elizabeth O’Bagy is merely a matter of moving the goalposts,” Rosenthal explained, echoing widely expressed sentiments among analysts following the conflict. “In the sense of the term that was usual, say, just a year or two ago, they are virtually all Islamic extremists. For the great bulk of the rebels, the war undoubtedly does represent a holy war against an ‘apostate’ Arab leader, as was the case in Libya.”
According to Rosenthal and his research on global Islamic extremism, Hosni Mubarak, Gadhafi, and the Assad dynasty have long been identified in al-Qaeda literature as “tawaghit.” The term is often translated as “tyrants,” he explained, but it actually means “false idols,” with the implication being that the rule of the relevant despots “usurps the legislative role that, per Islamists, is reserved for Allah (whose laws are, of course, embodied in the Quran).”
But what about Libya today?Has it achieved “democracy” and “human rights,” as proponents of “regime change” argued it would? Rosenthal’s book offers extensive documentation about what really happened during and after the UN-backed “regime change” operation led by the Obama administration. The New American also did a major report about the entire fiasco, explaining, among other elements, how the U.S. government sided with al-Qaeda and its affiliates to bring down the regime, and what that meant for the future of Libya.
More recently, the U.K. Independent published a special report this month looking at the shattered nation today.“Libya has almost entirely stopped producing oil as the government loses control of much of the country to militia fighters,” noted the report, adding that the nation went from 1.4 million barrels a day earlier this year to just 160,000 barrels a day now. “As world attention focused on the coup in Egypt and the poison gas attack in Syria over the past two months, Libya has plunged unnoticed into its worst political and economic crisis since the defeat of Gaddafi two years ago.”
According to Independent reporter Patrick Cockburn, the Muslim Brotherhood-dominated central government is witnessing a disintegration of its authority “in all parts of the country.” That reality on the ground, he continued, casts doubts on claims by American, British, and French politicians that NATO’s 2011 “military action” in Libya was a “successful foreign military intervention which should be repeated in Syria.”
“Libyans are increasingly at the mercy of militias which act outside the law.Popular protests against militiamen have been met with gunfire,”the Independent reported, citing dozens of deaths at a recent protest. “Foreigners have mostly fled Benghazi since the American ambassador, Chris Stevens, was murdered in the US consulate by jihadi militiamen last September. Violence has worsened since thenwith Libya’s military prosecutor Colonel Yussef Ali al-Asseifar, in charge of investigating assassinations of politicians, soldiers and journalists, himself assassinated by a bomb in his car on 29 August. Rule by local militias is also spreading anarchy around the capital.” Meanwhile, Libya’s new rulers announced an “integration” plan with Sudan’s genocidal Islamist dictator, too.
Instead of helping to create yet another bloody disaster in the Middle East, Congress should step in and restrain Obama, ensuring that the U.S. government remains neutral in the ongoing war between Syria’s ruthless dictator and the largely jihadist “rebels.” Christians are already under mortal threat there after having been protected by the Assad-family regime for decades,and if the Obama-backed “rebels” succeed,as in Libya, Christians’ futures will become even more imperiled. There are no good outcomes in Syria at this point, but having American taxpayers turn that nation into yet another Libya — or worse — is a terrible planfor more than a few reasons.
Alex Newman, a foreign correspondent for The New American, is normally based in Europe. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ronald Reagan called them “the moral equivalent of our founding fathers.”He characterized Contra killers the same way.
Bin Laden, al-Liby, and many other Al Qaeda fighters were used strategically as both allies and enemies. Most recently,al-Liby was an anti-Gaddafi “freedom fighter.”
In 2000, he was indicted for his alleged role in bombing US Kenyan and Tanzanian embassies in 1998.
He was one of the FBI’s most wanted. He had a $5 million bounty on his head. Washington abducted him lawlessly. It did so on Libyan territory.
US policy is out-of-control. Obama authorizes whatever he wants anywhere worldwide. Rogue leaders operate that way.
On October 8, AP headlined ”Did Obama Swap ‘Black’ Detention sites for ships?”
He ordered alleged “terrorists (interrogated) for as long as it takes aboard US naval vessels.” Al-Libi is held on the USS San Antonio. It’s an amphibious warship.
Throughout his tenure, Obama continued the worst of odious Bush administration practices. The Clinton administration began them. Guilt or innocence doesn’t matter. Suspects are lawlessly abducted.
They’re denied all rights. They’re held secretly at US black sites. Confessions are extracted through torture. Detainees say anything to stop pain.
Guantanamo is the tip of the iceberg. Dozens of US torture prisons operate globally. Afghanistan, Egypt, Ethiopia, Jordan, Kenya, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and many other complicit US allies host them.
They permit indefinite detention, interrogations, torture and other forms of abuse.
They assist in capturing and transporting detainees. They allow use of their domestic airspace. They provide intelligence information.
America is by far the world’s leading human rights abuser.No nation in history matches its ruthlessness. It’s out-of-control. It’s unaccountable. It’s waging war on humanity. It’s doing it globally.
Reprieve is UK-based. It promotes rule of law accountability. It works to “secure each person’s right to a fair trial.” It tries to “save lives.”
In June 2008, it saidAmerica “may have used as many as 17 ships as floating prisons.”
“About 26,000 people are being (lawlessly) held by the US in secret prisons – a figure that includes land-based detention centers.”
“(I)nformation suggests up to 80,000 have been ‘through the system’ since 2001.”
So have thousands more under Obama.
Former Pentagon spokesman Navy Commander Jeffrey Gordon liedearlier, saying:
“We do not operate detention facilities on board Navy ships.” They’re in “Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantanamo Bay.”
They’re in at least 54 complicit countries.According to Reprieve:
“Prison ships have been used by the US to hold terror suspects illegally since the days of President Clinton.”
“US government sources have confirmed that both the USS Bataan and the USS Peleliu have been used to hold prisoners.”
“Reprieve investigations suggest that a further 15 ships have been used to hold prisoners beyond the rule of law since 2001.”
They’re “interrogated aboard the vessels and then rendered to other, often undisclosed, locations.”
Reprieve legal director Clive Stafford later said:
“(W)e’ve identified thirty-two prison ships, sort of prison hulks you used to read about in Victorian England, which have been converted to hold prisoners, and we’ve got pictures of them in Lisbon Harbor, for example.”
“And these are holding prisoners around the world, as well. And there’s a bunch of proxy prisons – (in) Morocco, Egypt, Jordan and other countries – where this stuff is going on.”
“And this is a huge concern, because the world focus is on Guantanamo Bay, which really is a diversionary tactic in the whole war of terror or war on terror, whatever you’d like to call it.”
“And actually, most of these people who have been severed from their legal rights are in these other secret prisons around the world.”
According to a former detainee:
“One of my fellow prisoners in Guantanamo was at sea on an American ship before coming to Guantanamo.”
“He was in the cage next to me. He told me that there were about 50 other prisoners on the ship.”
“They were all closed off in the bottom of the ship. The prisoner commented to me that it was like something you see on TV.”
“The people held on the ship were beaten even more severely than in Guantanamo.”
Reprieve calls the USS Bataan one of America’s “most infamous ‘floating prisons.’ ”
John Walker Lindh was sent there. So was Australian David Hicks. Lindh was maliciously called the “American Taliban.”
Hicks was sold to US forces for bounty. Both men were lawlessly held. They were brutally tortured. Thousands of others have been treated the same way.
Obama promised to end lawless Bush administration practices. They continue out-of-control.
America’s war on terror authorizes anything goes. On September 18, 2001, Congress passed a joint House-Senate Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) for “the use of United States Armed Forces against those responsible for the recent attacks launched against the United States.”
On October 26, Patriot Act lawlessness followed. On November 13, Military Order Number 1 authorized the president to capture, kidnap or otherwise arrest non-citizens anywhere in the world for any reason.
US citizens are now vulnerable. Anyone can be arrested or abducted. They can be held indefinitely without charge, evidence, due process, trial, or other judicial fairness protections.
Torture is official US policy. Bush established it. On September 17, 2001, he signed a secret finding.
It authorized the CIA to “Capture, Kill, or Interrogate Al-Queda Leaders.”
It mandated establishing secret global facilities to detain and interrogate them. Doing so without guidelines on proper treatment was OK’d.
Detainees were declared “unlawful enemy combatants.” Obama calls them “unprivileged enemy belligerents.”
He authorized their murder or capture and indefinite detention. Torture remains official US policy.The worst of Bush administration practices continue.
International, constitutional and US statute laws no longer apply. Diktat power replaced them. Today’s America reflects out-of-control lawlessness.
A US drone has just taken a photo of Mullah Omar riding on a motorcycle through the streets of Damascus. 1
So what do we have as the United States refuses to rule out an attack on Syria and keeps five warships loaded with missiles in the eastern Mediterranean?
Only 9 percent of Americans support a US military intervention in Syria. 2
Only 11% of the British supported a UK military intervention; this increased to 25% after the announcement of the alleged chemical attack. 3
British Prime Minister David Cameron lost a parliamentary vote August 29 endorsing military action against Syria 285-272
64% of the French people oppose an intervention by the French Army. 4 “Before acting we need proof,” said a French government spokesperson. 5
Former and current high-ranking US military officers question the use of military force as a punitive measure and suggest that the White House lacks a coherent strategy. “If the administration is ambivalent about the wisdom of defeating or crippling the Syrian leader, possibly setting the stage for Damascus to fall to Islamic fundamentalist rebels, they say, the military objective of strikes on Assad’s military targets is at best ambiguous.” 6
President Obama has no United Nations approval for intervention. (In February a massive bombing attack in Damascus left 100 dead and 250 wounded; in all likelihood the work of Islamic terrorists. The United States blocked a Russian resolution condemning the attack from moving through the UN Security Council)
None of NATO’s 28 members has proposed an alliance with the United States in an attack against Syria. NATO’s Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said that he saw “no NATO role in an international reaction to the [Syrian] regime.” 7
The Arab League has not publicly endorsed supportof US military action in Syria; nor have key regional players Saudi Arabia and Qatar, concerned about a possible public backlash from open support for US intervention. 8
We don’t even know for sure that there was a real chemical attack. Where does that accusation come from? The United States? The al-Qaeda rebels? Or if there was such an attack, where is the evidence that the Syrian government was the perpetrator? The Assad regime has accused the rebels of the act, releasing a video showing a cave with alleged chemical-weapon equipment as well as claiming to have captured rebels possessing sarin gas. Whoever dispensed the poison gas – why, in this age of ubiquitous cameras, are there no photos of anyone wearing a gas mask? The UN inspection team was originally dispatched to Syria to investigate allegations of earlier chemical weapons use: two allegations made by the rebels and one by the government.
The United States insists that Syria refused to allow the UN investigators access to the site of the attack. However, the UN request was made Saturday, August 24; the Syrian government agreed the next day. 9
In rejecting allegations that Syria deployed poison gas, Russian officials have argued that the rebels had a clear motivation: to spur a Western-led attack on Syrian forces; while Assad had every reason to avoid any action that could spur international intervention at a time when his forces were winning the warand the rebels are increasingly losing world support because of their uncivilized and ultra-cruel behavior.
President George W. Bush misled the world on Iraq’s WMD, but Bush’s bogus case for war at least had details that could be checked, unlike what the Obama administration released August 29 on Syria’s alleged chemical attacks – no direct quotes, no photographic evidence, no named sources, nothing but “trust us,” points out Robert Parry, intrepid Washington journalist.
So, in light of all of the above, the path for Mr. Obama to take – as a rational, humane being – is of course clear. Is it not? N’est-ce pas? Nicht wahr? – Bombs Away!
Pretty discouraging it is. No, I actually find much to be rather encouraging. So many people seem to have really learned something from the Iraqi pile of lies and horror and from decades of other American interventions. Skepticism – good ol’ healthy skepticism – amongst the American, British and French people. It was stirring to watch the British Parliament in a debate of the kind rarely, if ever, seen in the 21st-century US Congress. And American military officers asking some of the right questions. The Arab League not supporting a US attack, surprising for an organization not enamored of the secular Syrian government. And NATO – even NATO!– refusing so far to blindly fall in line with the White House. When did that last happen? I thought it was against international law.
Secretary of State John Kerry said that if the United States did not respond to the use of chemical weapons the country would become an international “laughingstock”. Yes, that’s really what America and its people have to worry about – not that their country is viewed as a lawless, mass-murdering repeat offender. Other American officials have expressed concern that a lack of a US response might incite threats from Iran and North Korea. 10
Now that is indeed something to laugh at. It’s comforting to think that the world might be finally losing the stars in their eyes about US foreign policy partly because of countless ridiculous remarks such as these.
United States bombings, which can be just as indiscriminate and cruel as poison gas. (A terrorist is someone who has a bomb but doesn’t have an air force.)
The glorious bombing list of our glorious country, which our glorious schools don’t teach, our glorious media don’t remember, and our glorious leaders glorify.
Lebanon 1983, 1984 (both Lebanese and Syrian targets)
El Salvador 1980s
Iraq 1991 (Persian Gulf War)
Bosnia 1994, 1995
Iraq 1991-2003 (US/UK on regular no-fly-zone basis)
Iraq 2003-2011 (Second Gulf War)
Afghanistan 2001 to present
Pakistan 2007 to present
Somalia 2007-8, 2011 to present
Yemen 2009, 2011 to present
The above list doesn’t include the repeated use by the United States of depleted uranium, cluster bombs, white phosphorous, and other charming inventions of the Pentagon mad scientists;also not included: chemical and biological weapons abroad, chemical and biological weapons in the United States (sic), and encouraging the use of chemical and biological weapons by other nations;all these lists can be found in William Blum’s book “Rogue State: A Guide to the World’s Only Superpower”.
A story just released by Foreign Policy magazine, based on newly-discovered classified documents, reports how, in 1988, the last year of the 8-year Iraq-Iran War, America’s military and intelligence communities knew about and did nothing to stop a series of nerve gas attacks by Iraq far more devastating than anything Syria has seen. 11 Indeed, during that war the United States was the primary supplier to Iraq of the chemicals and hardware necessary to provide the Saddam Hussein regime with a chemical-warfare capability. 12
Now, apparently, the United States has discovered how horrible chemical warfare is, even if only of the “alleged” variety.
Some of those currently advocating bombing Syria turn for justification to their old faithful friend “humanitarian intervention”, one of the earliest examplesof which was the 1999 US and NATO bombing campaign to stop ethnic cleansing and drive Serbian forces from Kosovo. However, a collective amnesia appears to have afflicted countless intelligent, well-meaning people, who are convinced that the US/NATO bombing took place after the mass forced deportation of ethnic Albanians from Kosovo was well underway; which is to say that the bombing was launched to stop this “ethnic cleansing”. In actuality, the systematic forced deportations of large numbers of people from Kosovo did not begin until a few days after the bombing began,and was clearly a Serbian reaction to it, born of extreme anger and powerlessness. This is easily verified by looking at a daily newspaper for the few days before the bombing began the night of March 23/24, and the few days after.Or simply look at the New York Times of March 26, page 1, which reads:
… with the NATO bombing already begun, a deepening sense of fear took hold in Pristina [the main city of Kosovo] that the Serbs would NOW vent their rage against ethnic Albanian civilians in retaliation.
On March 27, we find the first reference to a “forced march” or anything of that sort.
But the propaganda version is already set in marble.
If you see something, say something. Unless it’s US war crimes.
“When you sign a security clearance and swear oaths, you actually have to abide by that. It is not optional.” – Steven Bucci, of the neo-conservative Heritage Foundation, speaking of Chelsea Manning (formerly known as Bradley)13
Really? No matter what an individual with security clearance is asked to do? No matter what he sees and knows of, he still has to ignore his conscience and follow orders? But Steven, my lad, you must know that following World War II many Germans of course used “following orders” as an excuse. The victorious Allies of course executed many of them.
Their death sentences were laid down by the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, Germany, which declared that “Individuals have international duties which transcend the national obligations of obedience. Therefore individual citizens have the duty to violate domestic laws to prevent crimes against peace and humanity from occurring.”
Nuremberg Principle IV moreover states: “The fact that a person acted pursuant to order of his Government or of a superior does not relieve him from responsibility under international law, provided a moral choice was in fact possible to him.”
Manning, and Edward Snowden as well, did have moral choices, and they chose them.
It should be noted that Barack Obama has refused to prosecutethose under the Bush administration involved in torture specifically – he declares – because they were following orders.Has this “educated” man never heard of the Nuremberg Tribunal? Why isn’t he embarrassed to make this argument again and again?
I imagine that in the past three years that Manning has had to live with solitary confinement, torture and humiliation, adding mightily to her already existing personal difficulties, the thought of suicide has crossed her mind on a number of occasions. It certainly would have with me if I had been in her position. In the coming thousands and thousands of days and long nights of incarceration such thoughts may be Manning’s frequent companion. If the thoughts become desire, and the desire becomes unbearable, I hope the brave young woman can find a way to carry it out. Every person has that right, including heroes.
The United States and its European poodles may have gone too far for their own goodin their attempts to control all dissenting communication – demanding total information from companies engaged in encrypted messaging, forcing the closure of several such firms, obliging the plane carrying the Bolivian president to land, smashing the computers at a leading newspaper, holding a whistle-blowing journalist’s partner in custody for nine hours at an airport, seizing the phone records of Associated Press journalists, threatening to send a New York Times reporter to jail if he doesn’t disclose the source of a leak, shameless lying at high levels, bugging the European Union and the United Nations, surveillance without known limits … Where will it end? Will it backfire at some point and allow America to return to its normal level of police state? On July 24, a bill that would have curtailed the power of the NSA was only narrowly defeated by 217 to 205 votes in the US House of Representatives.
And how long will Amnesty International continue to tarnish its image by refusing to state the obvious?That Cheleas Manning is a Prisoner of Conscience. If you go to Amnesty’s website and search “prisoner of conscience” you’ll find many names given, including several Cubans prominently featured. Can there be any connection to Manning’s omission with the fact that the executive director of Amnesty International USA, Suzanne Nossel, came to her position from the US Department of State, where she served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Organizations?
A phone call to Amnesty’s office in New York was unable to provide me with any explanation for Manning’s omission. I suggest that those of you living in the UK try the AI headquarters in London.
Meanwhile, at the other pre-eminent international human rights organization, Human Rights Watch,Tom Malinowski, the director of HRW’s Washington office, has been nominated by Obama to be Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor. Is it really expecting too much that a high official of a human rights organization should not go to work for a government that has been the world’s leading violator of human rights for more than half a century? And if that designation is too much for you to swallow just consider torture, the worst example of mankind’s inhumanity to man. What government has been intimately involved with that horror more than the United States? Teaching it, supplying the manuals, supplying the equipment, creation of torture centers in much of the world, kidnaping people to these places (“rendition”), solitary confinement, forced feeding, Guantánamo, Abu Ghraib, Bagram, Chile, Brazil, Argentina, Chicago … Lord forgive us!
One of the reactions of the United States to Russia granting asylum to Edward Snowden was reported thus: “There was a blistering response on Capitol Hill and calls for retaliatory measures certain to infuriate the Kremlin. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), long one of the Senate’s leading critics of Moscow, blasted the asylum decision as ‘a slap in the face of all Americans’ and called on the administration to turn up the pressure on Moscow on a variety of fronts, including a renewed push for NATO expansion and new missile-defense programs in Europe.”14
But we’ve long been told that NATO expansion and its missiles in Europe have nothing to do with Russia. And Russia has been told the same, much to Moscow’s continuous skepticism. “Look,” said Russian president Vladimir Putin about NATO in 2001, “this is a military organization. It’s moving towards our border. Why?”15He subsequently described NATO as “the stinking corpse of the cold war.” 16
We’ve been told repeatedly by the US government that the missiles are for protection against an Iranian attack. Is it (choke) possible that the Bush and Obama administrations have been (gasp) lying to us?
America’s love affair with Guns
Adam Kokesh is a veteran of the war in Iraq who lives in the Washington, DC area. He’s one of the countless Americans who’s big on guns, guns that will be needed to protect Americans from their oppressive government, guns that will be needed for “the revolution”.
On July 4 the 31-year-old Kokesh had a video made of himself holding a shotgun and loading shells into it while speaking into the camera as he stood in Freedom Plaza, a federal plot of land in between the Washington Monument and the Capitol.This led to a police raid of his home and his being arrested on the 25th for carrying a firearm outside his home or office. The 23-second video can be seen on YouTube. 17
I sent Kokesh the following email:
“Adam: All your weapons apparently didn’t help you at all when the police raided your house. But supposedly, people like you advocate an armed populace to protect the public from an oppressive government. I’ve never thought that that made much sense because of the huge imbalance between the military power of the public vs. that of the government. And it seems that I was correct.”
I received no reply, although his still being in jail may explain that.
Kokesh, incidentally, had a program on RT (Russia Today) for a short while last year.
The three preceding jokes are courtesy of my friend Viktor Dedaj of Paris ↩
Weekly report of the Libyan: Monitor Libya in a week: from August 24th to August 30th, 2013
This report reviews the most important political, security and social events taking place in Libya over the whole week, the report focuses in particular on the situation of human rights in Libya specially after the proliferation of militias and armed gangs, and the government’s inability to deal with it or face it, in addition to what the Libyan citizens are facing from various violations of fundamental rights, especially women and children.
1 – Chief of Staff of the Air Defense denies the entry of the military convoys from Chad to the border region’s oil fields
Chief of Staff of the Air Defense Gomaa El Abani, denies the entry of the military convoys from the Chadian border towards the oil fields in the border area. He said There was some reconnaissance sorties carried out on the southern region, to the Chadian border and oil fields in the region, pointing to the absence of any strange movements mentioned at the area.
2 – The Injury of 8 prisonersand two policemen in an effort to escape from prison Alroamy
The guests of the Reform and rehabilitation Foundation in Alruyemi at he region of Ain Zara Tripoli, who are around 500 Guest on Monday afternoon by making a rebellion, demanding the need to be displayed on the prosecutors and the courts according to a source of the judicial police. The Minister of Justice announced that the incident resulted in the injury of four of the judicial police and four prisonersand not any cases of death between the two sides.
3 – Ali Zaidan: the proliferation of weapons is a dilemma Libya
Ali Zaidan President of the Libyan interim governmentSaid that the unfortunate events taking place on the coastal road between the city « El Zawia » and « Rishvana» led to the deaths of four people and a number of wounded,and attributed the Prime Minister what is happening from the fighting in Libyan cities to the proliferation of weapons among citizens and out of the the hands of the legitimate authorities, warning that if no weapons are collected and returned to the army stores there will be significant challenges, calling for dialogue and mutual understanding, communication and self-restraint.
4 – Unknown persons threaten the Director of Galaa in the case open to the hospital
Director of the hospital Galaa Mustafa al-Sanusi received a death threat on his mobile phonein case of opening Galaa Hospital which is currently closed. Badri added that the threatened demanded fromthe Director of Galaa to keep the hospital closed in the case of opening it for any reason he will be killed even if the security forces are the one who opened the hospital.
5 – Interior and Justice warn from the attacks on the State institutions
the Ministries of Interior and Justice Confirmed that what is happening from an assault on the state institutions and the rape of the land and forests and property is considered a criminal offense punishable by law.Warning all who attempt to compromise the property of the state or its wealth or trying to purchase or transfer them. The two ministries said in a joint statement that the Libyan state don’t have ant obligation or to pay any compensation in cash when getting back its property, or when removing buildings and facilities that are held on the the usurped land but rapists will be required for compensation. The statement warned of any attempts to transfer the property to sell, gift or other behaviors that are absolutely null don’t give them the rights to use.
6 – Alhsadi held the internal and Higher Education the responsible for the attack on the the University of Derna
a member of the General National Conference of the city of Derna Mansour Alhsadi, held the Ministry of Interior and Ministry of Higher Education the responsibility of what has happened in all sections of the University Omar of El Mokhtar at Derna from the the robberies and theft and to stop the study and exams for students. And Alhsadi appealed the ministries of interior and higher education in the interim government to intervene rapidly to protect the university and to try to repair the damage caused by the attack.
7 – 3 dead and 21 wounded in armed clashes El-Zawia
Armed clashes on Friday in the city of Zawia between gunmen from Zawia and Rishvana. Resulted in deaths of 3 people and injury of 22 others from Zawia without knowing the number of casualties from the area of Rishvana, and a security source said that the clashes took place with heavy weapons without knowing why.
8 – Domestic of Zawia holds the the interim government the repercussions of lawlessness
the local council and the military and the Council of Elders of Zawia held the interim government and all the security and judicial organs the responsibility of what happened on Thursday in Zawia and what could result in serious repercussions. The military and the local council and the Council of Elders in Zawia – in a statement issued that the people of the Zawia and the local council and the military and wise men carrying the interim government what may result from the clashes that erupted between gunmen from the city of Zawia and Rishvana.
9 – An act of sabotage targeting the international communications cable in Derna
Mohammed Belras Ali the Undersecretary of the Ministry of Communications and Informatics, on Wednesday, said that saboteurs cut off at dawn the submarine cable on the seashore of city of Derna in the first point of dropping off. Which led to a break in the submarine cable feeder for the city of Derna, Sousse and Tobruk.
Sources of the Public Relations Department at the Directorate of national security in Sabha said that 10 members from the the Security were injured with variable degrees of severity in two attacks by gunmen on the directorate. The sources added that attackers used machine guns and RPG in the first attack around 11:00 pm from the Saturday evening, and the second attack, was around 01:30 am from the dawn of Sunday.The sources did not mention the identity of the attackers and whether they have been subjected to injuries in their ranks.
2 – The Assassinationof Nasser Othman El Haddad affiliated with the judicial police prison at Alkwyfah
The Body of Nasser Othman El Haddad a member of judiciary judicial police prison at Alkwyfah in Benghazi was found on Sunday Dumped on a farm in Sidi Ali near area Drianh, and appeared on him the effects of four bullets.
3 – The Assassination of Mustafa Akila Elmaghreby in Benghazi
The commander of dismantling explosives and mines Unit Colonel Mustafa Akila , was assassinated in city of Benghazi. According to eyewitnesses, the masked gunmen on board a black Jeep car shot him as he was leaving mosque Al Ansar in Almajora and was leading Friday prayers in it.
4 – Soldier was killed while attempting to arrest on the killers of Mustafa Akila
Soldier Wael Abdel Salam Kareem was killed on Saturday while he was standing near the security barrier on the road that link between Almkhila and Elberka city. After he was shot by unknown gunmen in a car that its descriptions applies to the car of the killers of Col. Mustafa Akila, head of the dismantling of explosives in front of mosque ElAnsari in Benghazi on Friday.
5 – The Assassination of Colonel Mustafa Elmaghrebyexplosives expert in Benghazi
Unknown persons shotthe Colonel Mustafa Elmaghrebi causing his death when he was out of the mosque Ansari after prayers on Friday, while Libyan security source confirmed Colonel was assassinated by firing squad, and the was Colonel Elmaghreby was the head of the unit Unit: detecting explosives of the security Directorate of Benghazi.
Third: The political situation:
1 – Seif al-Islam Gadhafi’s lawyer calls for trial in The Hague
The lawyer of Seif al-Islam, son of Libyan Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, detained by the Libyan authorities, Expressed his fear of the trial of his client in Tripoli, calling on the British government to seek to move the trial to the International Criminal Court in The Hague. John Jones Said that he’s afraid on his client, who faces charges of crimes war and crimes against humanity, from the undergoing to formal trial and then sentenced to death. He added that “the execution of Saif al-Islam Gaddafi would be a complete violation of the orders of the International Criminal Court so it makes sense and that Britain intervene in under the moral and legal commitment on the court.
2 – Zaidane launch an initiative for dialogue and stop the violence in Libya under the auspices of the UN
The Libyan Prime Minister, Ali Zaidan on Sunday Launched National Dialogue Initiative include several issues, the most notably is the national reconciliation and disarmament, with continued deterioration of the security situation in the country. Zaidane said that “the Council of Ministers decided to form a set up Board to organize this national dialogue to address all major topics of the current national affair politically, economically and socially.”
He said in a joint press conference with former First Deputy, Gomaa Aotaiqh, and the Representative of the General Secretary of the United Nations in Libya, Tarek Mitri, that “the government will create reasons for administrative and logistics for the success of this dialogue without having to be a party in it, and without putting his programs or ideas.
3 – Wall Street Journal: Libya is on the brink of chaos.. and citizens are disgruntled on government
Wall Street Journal warned that Libya which is the largest oil supplier to Europe is on the brink of chaos after the numerous assassinations and bombing of embassies outside the scope of the judiciary,which did not do anything to face these processes. And Ben Inkely said in an article published in the Wall Street Journal that, nearly two years after the fall of the former regime, it seems that people’s lives were getting worse, where citizens are suffering in Libya’s crumbling schools and dirty hospitals not to mention the rampant corruption.Thereby increasing discontent against the government.
4 – New Resignations from the members of the National Congress
The spokesman for the General National Congress Omar Humaydan said the last period has seen the resignation of several members of the National Congress without offering any excuses.He pointed out that members Mohamed Doma for the Department Tazrbu and Mohammed Mahiche for Benghazi submitted their resignations during a session last Sunday after the two of them had an important role within the conference. As the official spokesman said that the National Congress member Mustafa Sola for the Department of Elmaya submitted his resignation on Tuesday’s session without showing its causes.
5 – Sending Saif al-Islam Gaddafi and Abdullah al-Senussi and Baghdadi Mahmoudi and others to trial
The Public Prosecutor Counselor Abdel Kader Radwan Announced the conclusion of the investigation in the case concerning the events of the revolution 17th of February, and in which many of the pillars of the former regime are accused, and announced that he will refer all of the defendants to the room of charge at the primary Court of north of Tripoli on the 19th of September, and between who are referred to trial, Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, Abdullah Sanusi Director of military Intelligence. Baghdadi Ali al-Mahmoudi, Secretary of the General Committee previously. Milad Salem Milad Daman Director of Branch of the Internal Security Agency Tripoli earlier. Dou Mansour Dou Ibrahim. Mohamed Belkacem Youssef Zwai Secretary of the General People’s Congress earlier. Abdel Aaty Obeidi, Secretary of the General popular’s Committee for Foreign Liaison and International Cooperation previously and others.
Fourth: the economic situation:
1 – The Decline in oil production to 665 thousand barrels per day
Libyan Oil Minister Bari Laroussi, said the country’s production of crude oil, fell to 665 thousand barrels per day, due to constant disruptions month ago, due to the armed security guards to close the major export ports. Added Arousi – during an interview broadcasted by Libyan Free channel – Libya is currently producing about 665 thousand barrels per day, due to the strikes and the problems arising therefrom, compared with 1.55 million barrels a day before that.
2 – President of the Chamber security Bajaddabaa: the outside Export of the oil is turned off completely
The head of the joint security room city of Ajdabiya Colonel “Bashir Abdul Qadir Bodverh” that the oil that extends from field of Zueitina through Marsa Brega to the ports of Ras lanuf and Sidra pumped at the local level only. He said that the outer Export suspended completely.
3 – Balrwin: Libya lossesfrom the oil crisis of $ 4.5 billion so far
Chairman of the National Oil Corporation Nuri Balrwin, said Libya losses of unrest in the oil fields and ports about one hundred million dollars a day,and that the total losses since the beginning of this year amounted to “4.5″ billion dollars.
4 – Protesters from Zintan are blocking the oil line in protest against the marginalization of their city
Protesters from the city of Zintan closed line connecting the oil field of Sharara and refinery of El-ZawiaMonday; protesting against the marginalization of the city as they said. The head of the local council of the city of Zintan, “Mohammed Alokwak” for the ambiance of the country that the protesters’ demands are legitimate, because the city of Zintan suffer from marginalization by depriving the city of the most basic rights, pointing out that the city still lacks to a network of water supply potable yet. And added, “Alokwak” to the ambiance of the country today that the government did not meet all the demands of the people of the city.
5 – Stopping the export production of Elfil field of the port of Mellitah
The director of production at the Fil oil field on Tuesday confirmed that the process of export production from the field to the port of Mellitah has been suspended since Monday night by unknown. The engineer Abdel Fattah Abdel-Elkafy said “I do not know what are the reasons and motivations that led to the closure and stop the export process.”
6 – Officially: for the first time in Libya from 1956 Nuri Bushmin is the governor of the Central Bank of Libya
“Nuri Bushmin” the National Congress leader Authorized himself as Governor of the Central Bank of Libya under the authority granted to himself, according to his letter to the Governor of Central Bank of Libya on 8/21 asking him not to dispose anything of the Central Bank or change the board of directors of banks unless asking him personally .
And this is considered the first time since the founding of Central Bank of Libya in 1956 happens such a procedure, in which described an expert banker who told the Voice of Libya that this action is wrong and contrary to the Banking Act No. 1 of 2005,as amended, which not entitled to the President of the National Congress or other to reduce the powers of the governor except when a formal decision to name the new governor, or a vote of no confidence for the current governor.
Fifth: Freedom of the Press and Media:
1 – Storm the headquarters of the new Libya newspaper .. and stealing its contents
The headquarters of the newspaper new Libya in Tripoli on Friday evening, faced a robbery that left material losses to the newspaper. The newspaper’s editor Mahmoud Masrati said that the robbery was in the technical section of the newspaper where there was breaking into the Treasury and the Office of Management. Misrati pointed out that CID investigations are going “good”, predicting the appearance of video recordings of the robbery on a later time, and did not accuse any party.
2 – General Union of Journalists and Media condemns the attack on the newspaper of new Libya
The General Union of journalists and media professionals Denounced on Sunday the assault on the newspaper the new Libya considering this as undermines of freedom of opinion and expression. The union Confirmed that the attack on media institutions is what constitutes a serious infringement freedom of opinion and expression and intended to impose an atmosphere of fear to prevent journalists and media professionals from carrying out their professional duty in objectively and impartially.
Sixth: Libyan International Relations:
1 – Coast Guard Qara area arrested 500 illegal immigrants
Members of the Coast Guard for the presidency of Staff of the Navy at Region Qara Bolle, sector Tripoli, were able to arrest 500 illegal immigrants on board of two wooden boats, they were arrested while starting of migration process, among those arrested were women and children of different nationalities.
2 – Egypt-stop 152, including 24 Sudanese before escaping to Libya
Security Directorate at Matrouh Governorate, arrest the number of 128 Egyptian and Sudanese 24,were on their way to escape illegally to the State of Libya, and submitted the record of the incident and is still being Displayed to the prosecution.The arrest comes in a campaign aimed at combating illegal immigration, in coordination between the public security interest, central security and regulatory bodies and informatics, at the Directorate and the armed forces on the roads and mountain at Siwa Police Department.
3 – The arrest of more than 100 illegal immigrants on the border with Egypt during the week
A Libyan military source said that the battalion 71 of border guards in Tobruk, on Tuesday foiled an infiltration of twenty people from the Egyptian-Libyan border during the passage of one of the battalion. The source said that the battalion 71 was able during the week to stop more than a hundred illegal immigrants attempting to enter the territory of Libya. “
4 – Security information for an Imminent terrorist attack in Tunisia from Libya
Tunisian security sources said that the Tunisian authorities got confirmed reports of the jihadist groups of Tunisian and Moroccan nationalities receiving training at Camp at the west of Libyan territory, and they can seep into Tunisia for the support of the militants trapped on Mount Alhaanbe and relieve them from the pressure.
Seventh: The living conditions:
1 - Injury of 26 from food poisoning in Bayda due to contaminated food
Bayda Hospital on Saturday received 26 cases of poisoning caused by salmonella bacteriaaccording to medical sources in the city. And salmonella bacteria was discovered in foods contaminated with one of the city’s restaurants,which cause a rise in temperature when infected, as well as abdominal pain and Acute intestinal catarrh and in most cases may lead to death.
2 – The Ministry of Culture: the Prime Minister’s decision to transfer Elkheld Palace into an administrative office is violation of laws
The Ministry of Culture and Civil Society expressed its astonishment for the decision of the Council of Ministers to transfer Elkheld palace previously “to be the administrative headquarters of the Supreme Judicial Council without the knowledge of the Ministry of Culture and Civil Society that have already refused clearly and unequivocally in two meetings of the Council of Ministers the request from the Ministry of Justice, and the request of Chairman of the Supreme Council of the Judiciary, in particular. the ministry considered that this decision is contrary of the law, and an encroachment on the jurisdiction represented, and the functional responsibility and official sponsor of the national heritage.
3 – Registration of a shortage of medical staff Al Hawwari Hospital
The director of the media office in hospital Hawari Hanny Al Oraibi, confirmed that the hospital is suffering from a shortage in medical cadre, especially after the closure of hospitals in Benghazi. He said that The Hospital suffers from a shortage of doctors in departments of general surgeryand bones, especially after the closure of hospitals of Benghazi recently. He continued that hospital Hawari began to receive medical cases after the closure of Galaa which was the only hospital that receives accidents at the level of the eastern region, causing the arrival of many cases calls for general surgery or orthopedic surgery.
4 – Al Hawwari Hospital transferred poisoning cases to Children’s Hospital
According to official media office at Al Hawwari General Hospital Hani al-Al Oraibi, on Friday evening, that the hospital received a number of cases of poisoning for children of the camp Scouts at Giliana in Banghazi. Al Oraibi said the Hospital received 40 cases of poisoning of children of the Scout Movement, Some of them have been transferred to Children’s Hospital for treatment.
5 – Boy Scout camp at Geleana has exposed to poisoning
The camp Scouts at Geleana, on Friday, expose to poisoning cases resulted in the transfer of dozens of cases to hospitals in the city of Banghazi. One of the leaders Osama Bujazah said that more than 100 people from second-class camp were poisoned without knowing the real reason for the poisoning.
Eighth: Missing Detainees:
1 – The seventh list of missing persons and detainees
Libyan observer issued this week, the seventh list of missing persons and detainees, which includes 216 detainees and missing in Libya .. The Libyan observer calls all citizens to review the lists published on our site And take the initiative to communicate to update the data permanently and reporting any missing persons and detainees who have not been included yet.
Ninth: The Libyan observer documentaries:
1 – The second part of the documentary film elders of sedition
Libyan observer released the second part of the film elders of sedition and showing in this film, the most important contrasting religious opinions and attitudes of two of the most prominent satellite sheikhs who bring Arab peoples in civil wars: the Egyptian Salafist preacher Mohamed Hassan, the Saudi Sheikh Mohammed Arifi.