Friday, June 3, 2011

Update on Libyan Crisis Week of June 1, 2011

Libyan Refugee Camp. Photo Credit, AP. From Business Insider.

250,000 workers have fled Libya since the start of the civil unrest and have temporarily relocated to a refugee camp. Here a man looks for his belongings scattered by a sandstorm

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Dear readers

I apologize I have been remiss in updating this page. I went on a much needed family vacation. Anyway, I will do my best to get back on top of the Libyan situation.

Last updated, 5:33 p.m. June 6, 2011

According to the NYT "As NATO airplanes and attack helicopters struck fresh targets in Tripoli and the oil port of Brega on Sunday, senior British and American officials said there was no way of knowing how long it might take for the rebellion against Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi — already in its fourth month, and the third month of NATO airstrikes — to drive him from power"
According to Democracy Now, NATO continues to bomb Tripoli, and carried out at least 10 airstrikes on June 3, 2011 alone. Rape victim, Oman OBeidi stunned the world and brought approbation against the Qaddafi regime by reporting her rape by Libyan forces to western reporters gathered in a tourist hotel in Tripoli. She had fled to Qatar, but has been deported by the Qatari government to the rebel held east of Libya.

Refugees attempting to flee Libya were injured when their boat capsized off of the Tunisian Coast. 850 passengers were crowded onto a 100 foot fishing vessel. The fishing vessel, the Wave, set off from Tripoli, Libya, around noon last Friday, Colonel Baili said, and was carrying migrants from the African nations of Mali, Ghana, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast and Morocco as well as from Pakistan and Bangladesh. (NYT June 2, 2011). 

In talks with South African President Jacob Zuma, Qadaffi emphasized he has no intention of leaving Libya. [Note, to his credit, Qadaffi was a steadfast supporter of the anti-apartheid movement, hence the friendly relations with SA] The meeting was held in Tripoli. Qadaffi says that NATO bombing has claimed the lives of his son and granchildren, although these reports cannot be independently verified.

Mr. Zuma also had visited with Colonel Qaddafi in early April, trying to present an African “roadmap” for an end to the conflict between Qaddafi loyalists and the antigovernment opposition based in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi. The plan calls for an immediate cease fire, a halt to the NATO bombings, and negotiations between the Qaddafi government and the rebels. (NYT May 31, 2011)

NATO suspended bombing for 72 hours to allow the talks with Zuma to proceed. NATO resumed its airstrikes on Tripoli after dusk on Tuesday. Qadaffi's spokesperson, Moussa Ibrahim, has bluntly stated "We will never give in." [I think it is interesting that Qadaffi is willing to let his country be bombed into oblivion rather than surrender. What does this tell us about culture, politics, or Qadaffi's mental health?]

The increasingly shrill words appeared to reflect a darkening sense of isolation, brought on by 10 weeks of NATO bombing, rebel advances in the east, Western leaders’ recent reaffirmation of demands for Colonel Qaddafi to quit, and the fact that Russia, an old ally of Libya, joined those demands last week. Also, prosecutors at the International Criminal Court announced two weeks ago that they would seek war crimes indictments against Colonel Qaddafi and a son, Seif al-Islam el-Qaddafi, narrowing the destinations the Libyan leader might choose if forced into exile. (NYT, May 31, 2011)

More soon. Prayers for the Libyan people. WMB


  1. i think that Qaddafi is really a psychedelic ego oriented, these character defects definitely is not the right capabilities to rule anything

  2. This crisis is taking so long, and the people are the main victims of the same; that is, the civil society is paying a high price in this entire situation. The confrontation should be stopped and the President Ghadaffi should revise his position to keep the power. On the other hand, because of the well known characteristics of the leader Ghadaffi, it seems that he will not leave the power, and as a result the pain and violence will continue in Libya.
    The worst scenario is the increased number of deaths, destruction of infrastructure units, and people deprivation.
    The world appeals for a cease fire, and I think that at the end, the President Ghadaffi will be removed from the power. Therefore, he can do it by himself resigning the power; however, his personal and political character does not allow him to act in this way. He has a huge charisma as politician, he is military and following a military rule that a good military cannot abandon a battle; he will maintain this rule alive. I would not like to comment on NATO intervention, but everything should be done in such a way to protect the lives of all Libyans.

  3. I wonder why all the international forces leave this upnormal GHADAFFI sheds blood his people?? Are there the same forces who arrests SADAM HUSSIEN? or Libya is not the paradise they seek to hold ?

    I believe that these forces are leave the situation getting worst to fulfill the main purpose ( THE NEW MIDDLE EAST) !!