CounterPunch supports the Floyd Rebellion and Black Lives Matter.
Please consider supporting an organization working on police accountability, additional resources on the movement and how you can get involved can be found here.

FacebookTwitterRedditEmail

Barack, Hillary and the Libya Crime

It took two warmongering politicians to unleash the “shit storm” that the U.S. created in Libya: Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. Yet, Clinton, the number two player in the aggression, takes all the weight, while Obama acts as if he was nowhere near the scene of the war crime. Obama takes no responsibility for the terror he has loosed on Africa. “Boko Haram’s strength and ability to terrorize Nigerians is the direct result of the Libyan crime.”

Barack Obama’s last nine months in office will provide plenty of opportunity for him to spoon feed his scribes in the corporate media. Under the pretense of writing history they will serve as one collective pro-Obama mouthpiece between now and January 20, 2017. The process is a delicate one however. The president will also have to explain those policies that did not produce the outcomes he wanted. Such is the case with any discussion of his role in destroying Libya.

It seems strange that he would want to remind people of the disaster of his own making but there is a twisted logic. He is not only defending himself but trying to give Hillary Clinton cover in her presidential campaign. Hillary haters ought to be Obama haters too but most Democrats won’t tear themselves away from their idol. The openly and gracelessly evil Hillary takes the fall for a plot hatched by both of them. It is just one of the reasons she is damaged goods to millions of Democrats who have chosen to support Bernie Sanders instead.

The United States, NATO and Gulf monarchy actions against Libya in 2011 were a war crime by any definition of the term. An unknown number of people died, the aggression instigated a massacre against dark skinned Libyans and immigrants from African countries. Entire cities like Tawergha were turned to rubble by America’s jihadists allies who are otherwise known as terrorists. President Muammar Gaddafi was murdered by a mob who were only able to carry out the deed with western financial and military support.

The attack by the United States and its allies resulted in a devastated nation that to this day is racked by political and sectarian violence. Libya has no functioning government and became a haven for ISIS. ISIS is strongest in Iraq, Libya and Syria, all of which were targets of regime change.

Thanks to Barack and Hillary, Libya is also a route for desperate people whose plight was created by U.S. interventions. Refugees from Syria, another country devastated by America, take circuitous paths to Libya in hopes of getting to Europe. It is also a point of embarkation for Africans. Some of those falsely claim to be from Eritrea, a country under American attack by sanctions and other non-military means. America makes Eritrea unlivable and forces its citizens to immigrate. They and others then get a place at the head of the refugee line that wouldn’t exist if the United States would stop waging wars. (See Diana Johnstone’s Queen of Chaos.)

American and European terror was a gift that kept on giving. The weapons seized from the Libyan army were used by al Qaeda affiliates in Mali and in Nigeria. Boko Haram’s strength and ability to terrorize Nigerians is the direct result of the Libyan crime.

Hillary Clinton is quite rightly taking heat for being the U.S. mastermind of this atrocity. As secretary of state she made the case for the American nightmare. She was quite proud of this evil achievement and infamously said, “We came, we saw, he died.” Of course these machinations were the cause of blowback in 2012 when jihadists killed the American ambassador at Benghazi.

All of this criminality is sent straight down the memory hole with the help of the corporate media. As part of his never ending marketing and propaganda drive Obama graces the cover of the April 2016 issue of The Atlantic magazine with an article entitled, “The Obama Doctrine.” Presidents don’t give access without an expectation of looking good. The interviews with the president and current and past administration officials doesn’t deviate from this rule.

The article reveals that the president refers to Libya as “the shitstorm,” as if the devastation happened by some strange osmosis unconnected with his administration. He even throws allies like the UK and France under the bus saying, “When I go back and I ask myself what went wrong, there’s room for criticism, because I had more faith in the Europeans, given Libya’s proximity, being invested in the follow-up.” In a Fox news interview he was asked about his worst mistake and repeated his mea culpa. “Probably failing to plan for the day after, what I think was the right thing to do, in intervening in Libya.”

Most Americans still believe in Manifest Destiny, the belief that their country has a right to do what it wants in the world. They don’t really care about invasions and interventions as long as they can be considered successful. That means no dead Americans and countries that are controlled by chosen puppets who seem to keep their nations under control and out of the news.

Hillary Clinton is the villain in the story because of her cackling celebration of Gaddafi’s murder and because Libya continues in a state of crisis. There has been very little questioning of the idea that the United States has a right to decide who runs that country or any other. Imperialism is still acceptable if it is carried out seamlessly. It is only the mess that makes Americans uncomfortable, and Democrats are no different from Republicans in this regard.

If there was any justice in the world Barack and Hillary would fear being on trial. Instead he leaves office looking like a model on magazine covers and they work together to make sure that she sits in the oval office after him. But there isn’t enough justice in the world and they will work hand in hand like the political twins they have always been.

More articles by:

Margaret Kimberley writes the Freedom Rider column for Black Agenda Report, where this essay originally appeared. 

Weekend Edition
June 05, 2020
Friday - Sunday
Jacob F. Lee – Matthew E. Stanley
Direct Action and the Rejection of Monumental History
Louis Proyect
Reflections on My COVID-19 Immunity
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Mad Bull, Lost Its Way
Stanley L. Cohen
Everywhere is War
Louis Yako
America Has Always Been Burning with Racism: Who is the Enemy?
Jefferson Morley
Showdown on 16th Street
Eve Ottenberg
Killing Workers (and Customers) – With No Liability
Peter Linebaugh
Say Their Names!
Melvin Goodman
Trump’s War on Democracy
Paul Street
Dear History Students
Lola Allen
How Has Bolivia’s de Facto Regime Taken Advantage of COVID-19 to Consolidate Its Power and Repress Political Rivals?
Jonathan Cook
As US protests Show, the Challenge is How to Rise Above the Violence Inherent in State Power
Alvaro Huerta
Police Abuse in America’s Barrios
Ron Jacobs
Generals Are Not the People’s Ally
Daniel Warner
Resilience
Ramzy Baroud
‘Wolf Warrior Diplomacy’: Israel’s China Strategy in Peril
David Yearsley
Dam Nation and Woody Guthrie
Sam Husseini
The Barr Coup 
Richard C. Gross
Bunker Mentality
Pam Martens - Russ Martens
BlackRock is Bailing Out Its ETFs with Fed Money and Taxpayers Eating Losses; It’s Also the Sole Manager for $335 Billion of Federal Employees’ Retirement Funds
Marshall Auerback
The Battle Over Free Speech Online is a Volcano That’s Ready to Blow
David Rosen
Trump’s Election to Lose
Jack Rasmus
Confronting Institutional Racism
Joseph Natoli
Ubu Orange
Gary Olson
Jakarta: Force and Fraud at Home and Abroad. What’s Next?
Sister Karen M. Donahue
I’m Outraged by Trump’s Church Photo-Op
Jaelani Turner-Williams
Racism is a Public Health Crisis
Chuck Collins
As 42.6 Million Americans File for Unemployment, Billionaires Add Half a Trillion Dollars to Their Cumulative Wealth
Jill Richardson
It Doesn’t Matter Who Protested and Who “Rioted”
Richard Ward
A Matter of Focus
Colin Todhunter
Food and Agroecology: Coping with Future Shocks
Ariel Dorfman
Literature in Times of Turmoil
Russell Mokhiber
ICE Wants to Deport Marc Petitpierre to Switzerland
Liz Theoharis
Organizing the Rich or the Poor? Which America Will Be Ours After the Pandemic?
Kollibri terre Sonnenblume
Social Media Sucks for Reporting News
Denita Jones
Going Back to Work in a Pandemic
Tracey L. Rogers
A Tale of Two Americas
Paul Cantor
Thank You, Peaceful Protesters!
Susan Block
Sadistic Policing
Nicky Reid
Because Imperialists Rape: Anarcha-Feminism In the Ashes of the MeToo Era
Marilyn Bruya
Trump is the Looter to Worry About
Norman Solomon
Solidarity Includes Wearing a Mask at Protests
Kim C. Domenico
Misfit Redemption: Escape from the Cruelty of White Liberal Innocence
John Kendall Hawkins
The Coming Purge of Doppelgängers and the Palast Revolution
Stephen Cooper
America is Burning
FacebookTwitterRedditEmail