Last week I sent out a note in Hebrew in which I condemned the Gadaffi regime in no uncertain terms. However, I found Castro’s fears that the anti-Gadaffi campaign being run by the US and the EU is, in essence, preparation for armed intervention. My sense is that anyone in the left should oppose, in principle, intervention by the US and its allies.* This applies, in addition to the negation armed invasion, to the full range of techniques and methods designed both to aid the rebels and to infiltrate and manipulate the anti-Gadaffi camp. I can understand and even support denunciations of Gaddafi and Gadaffi’s vicious response to mass struggle against his regime. But I cannot understand the vilification of the Castro-Chavez position. Indeed, the entire left shares with them and many others, the need to warn, above everything else, against US intervention in Libya. Indeed we may still have to meet, all of us, in mass action, under the unifying slogan: No to US intervention in Libya.
Friends, who are attacking Castro and Chavez on the Libyan issue, might ask themselves a rather simple but important question. What are the reasons behind the Castro-Chavez position? Is it possible that their experience affords a special vantage point? One might imagine that the direct responsibility for protecting the sovereignty and the rights on one’s own people and country, under constant threat, develops deeper insight into the dangers involved. For many who are examining the probability of an attack, this is a purely academic question. For Castro and Chavez, and indeed for all the forces arraigned against the US empire and battling it, the question is literally one of life or death.
My understanding is that It is precisely those who live in the sights of imperial threat and confrontation are the first to recognize the operation of mechanism by which remote, distant local conflicts morph into wider ones, especially when imperialism desires to expand its role on the ground.
The reality of US intervention covers an infinite amount of techniques and methods of varying intensity. Direct military intervention is usually the last stage of what often seems like rather innocuous interest and desire to help, of course, on a humanitarian basis. But most important for taking the temperature of US interventionist fever are the specific circumstances in which it appears.
A gigantic tidal wave of protest and reform is shaking the very foundations of United States interests in a region vital for it. And presently, the US feels itself being sidelined in its own bailiwick. The US, therefore, maneuvers to demonstrate that it is still relevant. For it, the game is not over and it must get into the thick of things as quickly as possible. For this very purpose, it has no difficulty in paying lip service to the Arab rebellion of 2011. And when Washington senses an opportunity to join the fray, it doesn’t hesitate to sacrifice Gadaffi, a mere pawn of a pro-Western tyrant, in order to insert itself, somehow, into the unfolding events.
Will US-Nato Intervene?
As we have noted, there is a full range of techniques and methods to intervene in budding civil war short of direct armed intervention. Usually, these can all be implemented while, simultaneously, many on the left explain why it is clear the US will not intervene. They mean direct invasion but meanwhile the intervention activity has already moved into high gear. Here we have a partial list: 1) supply of money and credit lines 2) information – current surveillance, tracking and espionage 3) bribery 4) dispelling propaganda and disinformation 5) jamming and blocking enemy communication 6) providing intelligence 7) making military material available 8) military advisors 9) making essential civilian material available, denying the same to enemy 10) threats and maneuvers that either require deployment of enemy forces or affect strategic lines 11) training troops
There must be more, but I do not have any personal experience in the field. One can rest assured that Washington and its various nefarious agencies are active in Libya from the first days of the crisis.
My First “Intervention”
I thought for a while I could continue to nurse my temporary writers block deepened by a perennial bout of sloth. But then I got this sinking feeling that the Yankees are up to something while everybody was busy talking almost exclusively about the extant of Gaddafi’s malevolence. I confess that Fidel’s first article convinced me that the main issue was and is the danger of US-Nato intervention.
Several Comments on the Libyan Issue
There is a basis for the accusation that the Gadaffi regime used brutal indiscriminate violence against demonstrators in his country when they were demanding a change in Libya, similar to that which occurred in Tunisia and Egypt. The Gadaffi people deny this. It is therefore vital that the accusation be clarified before an impartial body.
Gadaffi is only one of the more than a dozen tyrants in the region who enjoy the military, economic and political support of the US.
The US sensed that mobilizing support for the Libyan rebellion, perfectly justified in and by itself, offered a golden opportunity to intervene in Lybia. From that point, it did everything possible to transform the justified rebellion in Lybia into a confrontation between the USA, acting as the defender of democracy and the Gadaffi regime.
The US sought after and soon found among Gadaffi’s opponents, tribal chiefs, high level officers and ranking opportunists who held office in the Gadaffi government. These opponents of Gadaffi joined the battle in order to settle accounts with him and to advance their own agenda which is distinctively different from that of the mass uprising within the general Arab revolution.
It would be a mistake to underestimate the experience and the insight of the leaders of the countries of the Boliverian revolution, such as Castro and Chavez. They know, from their own experience, Washington’s strategy and the aims. They understood immediately that the US was ready to sacrifice the pawn, Gadaffi, (though friendly to the US) in order to gain some standing as an active participant in the Arab revolution.
The US and its allies faked an analysis to the effect that the Gadaffi regime was falling apart. On that background, they encouraged the Libyan opposition to organize a military campaign in order to achieve a quick military victory built on US political backing and military might.
Castro was right when he warned that the US was intervening
In Lybia in order to convince the popular movements in the Middle East that the US still has power and influence. But if we want to identify with battle of millions for freedom and democracy, it is vital to neutralize US influence in order to break up it’s regional hegemony. This hegemony operates through a chain of tyrants just like Gadaffi. Castro’s analysis is not simply one of a insightful observer. Castro expresses the sensitivities and the political instincts of an entire continent. The masses in Latin America have a wealth of experience of how the neighbor to the north uses power and money in order to lay down a smokescreen in preparation for aggressive action.
The demonization of Gadaffi deserves a special comment since even demonization has its limits. The media love to have a personality who can symbolize total evil in a single person. By intention or not, it happens that other actors in the drama such as Obama and Clinton, appear as nice, honorable people. Observers of the international crisis around Libya are led to concentrate their whole attention on Gadaffi’a weird behavior, to the point that they ignore all the elements of the entire picture. In this respect, one should not forget the role of the demonization of Sadaam Hussein in developments leading to the war in Iraq. Saadan was indeed a ruthless killer. But his demonization was an integral element in a successful propaganda campaign which led to a terrible catastrophe for the people of Iraq, which continues to this very day. And indeed, Gadaffi is a weird and disgusting character ready to use any means to defend his rule. But Gadaffi’s weird character is insufficient to justify intervention in Libya. Nor can we take comfort in the fact that the US operatives preparing for launch deadly military action are well groomed and well dressed. (End of my article)
I received a good many favorable comments on the article. Even so, it is necessary to reveal that there were those who wanted to know when I turned into a Gadaffi lover. Moreover, my detractors insisted that I was deceitfully hiding the fact that Castro and Chavez had expressed full approval of the Gaddafi regime.
Since Castro’s two letters on Libya were available on the net, I took the liberty of sending them to my readers. It is clear that the text dispel any doubts as to Castro’s intellectual capacity. It is also clear that Castro did not give full support to the Gadaffi regime.
Castro may be right or he may be wrong but senile he is not!
I was to discover after sending out the Castro texts that there are indeed people a few people on the left who consider support for Cuba pure Stalinism and wish to inform me that Cuba is not that different than Libya.
To all who approved of my written comments on Libya and even to those who suggested that I was suffering from some Stalinist recidivism, I suggest that we might still agree on our joint opposition to US-NATO intervention in Libya. And that, my friends, is the real issue.