Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
July 07, 2016

Libya - Part III - The Return Of The King Saif Gaddafi

by Richard Galustian

In an article in early May, I wrote "Keep in the back off your mind the potential future importance of Saif Gaddafi."
The news of the release from a Libyan prison in Zintan of Saif Al Islam Gaddafi, heir apparent to his late father, is surprising to many outsiders but it nothing to what may come next - a return in some form to power.
In Libya’s 2011 Arab Spring uprising, Saif joined his father and sons on the barricades, castigating NATO-backed rebels in a bitter revolutionary war. While those rebels later cornered and killed his father Muammar and brother Moatasim in Sirte, Saif was captured alive trying to flee through the Sahara desert to Niger.
It may be his good fortune that the units capturing him were from Zintan, a mountain town south of Tripoli, who later went to war with Islamist led Libya Dawn which captured the capital in 2014. When a mass trial was held of former regime figures there, Zintan refused to hand Saif over, sparing him the brutalities inflicted on other prisoners including former intelligence chief Abdullah al Senussi and his younger brother Saadi, who was filmed being beaten in a Tripoli prison cell.
Zintanis were no friends of the former regime, fighting against Gaddafi’s forces as one of the most effective rebel outfits during the uprising that was won by NATO bombing.
But from the few accounts of those allowed to visit him in a closely guarded compound somewhere in the town, he has been treated well, living under what amounts to house arrest, until now.
A year ago a Tripoli court operating under Libya Dawn auspices sentenced him, and either others including Al Senussi, to death. Up in Zintan, not much changed for Saif, with Zintan still digging in its heels and refusing to hand him over to Tripoli’s grim Al Hadba prison.
The shambolic UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA) under a puppet PM who operates out of Tripoli naval base, the only part of the city they control, however appears to be responsible for the amnesty order given in April to Saif and other prisoners removing their death sentences and ordering them to be freed.
Since then, Saif’s location is a mystery, but Zintan’s attitude to him is tempered by their alliance with former Gaddafi-supporting tribes, including those from Beni Walid and Warshefani, in their brutal battle with Libya Dawn’s Islamists. The Gaddafi tribe itself has a base south of Zintan around Sebha, making common cause with the Zintanis against Libya Dawn militias who control the capital and lord it over the GNA.
Before the Libya uprising, Saif criss-crossed the globe pushing an agenda for democratization he hoped would reform the country. Whether the drive was not serious, or whether it was frustrated by his hardline siblings Moatsem and Khamis, is impossible to know, but he emerges from captivity to find Libya a changed place something he predicted.
Saif al-Islam in February 2011 gave a speech foretelling of what was to come. And he was right “There will be civil war in Libya … we will kill one another in the streets and all of Libya will be destroyed. We will need 40 years to reach an agreement on how to run the country, because today, everyone will want to be president, or emir, and everybody will want to run the country.”
Saif knew his country would be torn apart if his father regime was forced out by the West. 
The brutalities of his father’s regime have since been matched by those of some of the militias that overthrew him, most visibly the grim beating of his brother Saadi in a Tripoli jail which his captors filmed in gruesome detail.
Many of the tribes that once supported Gaddafi are now battling Islamists and their opportunistic Misratan allies of Libya Dawn, and will see in Saif a figure who can unify their demands not to be squeezed out of Libyan political life.
Opposition to him taking a political role it can be argued is softening because he was never part of the “muscle” of the Gaddafi regime, spending much of his time in London moving around the gilded circle of rich tycoons, academics and Tony Blair’s political elite.
There is, in other words, an opening for a man who was castigated by rebels for dismissing their rebellion on Gaddafi’s green TV during the uprising, but who never fired a shot in anger. With his release, he might get a shot at the plan he always said he wanted; to reform his country and unite key tribes who feel marginalized by Libya’s power brokers. 
Pieces are falling into place for him to possibly take part in some kind of grand council. With the GNA unable to persuade either of Libya’s other two governments to join it, there are calls for a wider mediation effort, with Saudi Arabia and importantly Oman, offering mediation, to be discussed in Brussels on 18th July with US Secretary of State John Kerry. 
In this battered, chaotic country, with governments fighting each other and IS, Saif Gadaffi may find a new role as part of the solution rather than the problem.
In the past 24 hours since the news broke he had been freed, Libyans across the country from different towns and cities have held pictures of Saif shouting his name. To my knowledge it's the first time any pro-Gaddafi demonstrations have been evident in so many parts of the country since 2011.
It's time Saif played a role with other libertarians in and outside Libya promoting the old constitution and particularly banishing members of the former AQ affiliate, LIFG.
Rumors are abound that Saif will give a press conference very soon. That's going to be very interesting indeed if it happens.

Posted by b on July 7, 2016 at 16:32 UTC | Permalink


What I sent to some friends:

Read this. I don't need a reply.

I will be forwarding your article, with attribution, to some of my friends
who persist in seeing Obama as a force for good and Hillary as the lessor
of evils.

{It won't do any good. They refuse to see the US as a failed state.}

Posted by: rg the lg | Jul 7 2016 18:25 utc | 1

Excellent article, rg the lg. I linked it on FB but I'm sure none of my friends will read it.

Posted by: spudski | Jul 7 2016 19:07 utc | 2

Posted by: rg the lg | Jul 7, 2016 2:25:26 PM | 1

Yep. Blum is good. His Killing Hope changed the way I perceive AmeriKKKa.
Great Satan is almost a compliment compared to the reality.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 7 2016 20:05 utc | 3

Well, I hope Saif can keep out of harm's way.

Any and everything will be dome to keep Lybia and Africa in shambles. I guess nobody in this forum sees Boko Haram as
a genuine Nigeria movement.

Posted by: CarlD | Jul 7 2016 20:08 utc | 4

If Saif Gadaffi does find his way back into helping run or running Libya will potus hillabillie head explode?

rg---voting in Amerika is like voting for the more effective evil (Glen Ford gets credit) so I'll be vote Green again.

Posted by: jo6pac | Jul 7 2016 20:31 utc | 5

I hope that Saif Gadaffi does find his way into helping to run Libya. If so, perhaps that badly broken land can start to heal. It would be great to see some leader unify the land and stop the violence -- and then go to the UN and demand that the evil US led coalition that destroyed Libya pay for their crimes.

The US Empire is, without a doubt, the most evil empire that this planet has ever seen. Rome was nothing compared to the US.

Posted by: Mark Stoval | Jul 7 2016 21:06 utc | 6

thanks richard - for these ongoing posts on libya... i hope he is able to remain alive...

Posted by: james | Jul 7 2016 21:29 utc | 7

#6 Actually Rome was a pretty good analogy if we factor in the killing technology that the US uses, and Rome did not have, into account.

There is another good analogy with Rome. They engaged in a number of ruinous wars against the Germanic tribes above the Rhine. Recall the battle of the Teutenberg forest. This battle stopped the expansion of Rome beyond the Rhine. Of course, the Romans continued to try to subject the Gemanic tribes for another 50 years but the costs of those attempts were threatening to bankrupt the empire. The Romans finally agreed to a number comprises with the Germans that eventually resulted in the Roman armies being manned by Germans, Goths, Huns etc. It was those forces that destroyed Rome over the next few centuries.

Posted by: ToivoS | Jul 7 2016 22:04 utc | 8

Now this is really news! Saif had plenty of time to think about the mistakes his father and his siblings committed. In case he really reappears eventually he won't repeat 'em. He could be a glimpse of hope for his battered country and even for the whole of Africa. I hope he will be able to distinguish friend and foe.

Posted by: Pnyx | Jul 7 2016 22:29 utc | 9

Saif seems like the new Neolibraconian viceroy to me. I'm sure the Neolibraconians hope he succeeds as Trojan Horse and opens the gates of Libya.

Posted by: jfl | Jul 7 2016 22:53 utc | 10

rg the lg @1

Blum could've gone further.

>> Obama said his administration would be the most transparent ever.
It has been the most secretive.

>> Obama once said that the first think he thinks of in the morning and the last thing at night is the unemployed. He cites his Administration's record of jobs creation as an accomplishment.
But many of those jobs were rehires after the downturn just before he took office, and many more are low-paying or part time jobs. In fact, the main reason for the low official unemployment rate is that there are a record number of people who are considered to be out of the workforce.

>> Obama received the Nobel Peace Prize simply for being elected.
Since then he has led an Administration that has:

- turned a 'no-fly' zone in Libya into a bombing campaign;

- nearly gone to war on false pretenses (2013 Syrian gas attack);

- supported/instigated a coup in Ukraine;

- sparked a new Cold War.

Members of the Nobel committee has expressed regret at awarding Obama the Prize(!)

>> 'Obamacare' is deeply flawed, with premiums set to increase dramatically later this year. Obama refused to include a 'public option' as he had promised.

>> On civil rights/minority affairs/governance, Obama - a constitutional lawyer - has been abysmal.

- The Black Lives Matter movement is no accident.
Other than his very election (which his supporters heralded as the start of a 'post-racial' America), he has done little to promote inter-racial understanding.

- He had to be prodded to accept gay marriage by Biden and the Pope.

- He kept Holder and Clapper in office after the former was held in contempt of Congress and the later lied to Congress.

- His Home Affordability Modification Program (HAMP) initiative was revealed (by his Treasury Secretary, Timmoty Geitner!) to be a means of helping banks to better manage the large number of foreclosures.
A out-sized number of these foreclosures were homes owned by minorities. During the sub-prime boom, minority communities had been targeted for unaffordable loans (partly due to government incentives, which were later blamed for the crisis). Although the program helped some, many were con-ed into paying upkeep of their homes until the banks were ready to foreclose.

> Obama's stimulus package was widely viewed as too small.
As usual, those most affected by hard economic times are minorities.

> His back-room dealing over the bogus 'Fiscal Cliff' was a sly way of cutting government social programs which largely benefit the poor and disadvantaged.
The U.S. Budget Deficit was bloated by military spending that had to be cut back after the Iraq War. This was used to craft a deal whereby (most of) the Bush tax cuts permanent and social spending would be cut (via the 'Sequester').

- 'Obamatrade' (TPP/TTIP) would undermine US sovereign rights.

- For political gain, Obama Administration officials:

* lied about Benghazi;

* used the IRS to harass opponents;

* ran interference for Hillary.

>> On the environment, Obama once again spins his record into something it is not. Most environmentalists see little progress from Obama's "leadership".

And there's much more.

<> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <>

PS It seems bad form to go OT on the first comment.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 7 2016 22:54 utc | 11

I had heard that Saif's sister had taken a leadership role in the resistance. I hope that spending so much time with Blair has provided Saif with enough understanding of how the neolibs operate without becoming indebted to them.

Posted by: Rusty Pipes | Jul 7 2016 23:05 utc | 12

@rg the lg | Jul 7, 2016 2:25:26 PM | 1

America and the world deserve Clinton. Maybe, worst than Obomo & Dubya combine. Not that I think Obomo or Dubya any betters or lesser of evils. Hope to live and watches Amerikka's rampages and treats these three (and other) criminals the same as they did to Gaddafi, Mussolini and more....

Forget about "International Tribunal" in the Hague, UN or NGO, they're part and parcels of the 1%. BTW always respects Richard Galustian’s writing and your comments. :-)

Posted by: Jack Smith | Jul 7 2016 23:11 utc | 13

@9 pnyx.. if only the west was given over to thinking of the mistakes they make and continue to make here today.. a cynical observer would be inclined to say the actions of the west are intentional, with the chilcot inquiry of yesterday being further proof of this.. dealing with the west as friend is a tall order to fulfill! you can play try to please as witnessed in the case of his father, but it matters not.. until there is accountability with leaders like blair, bush, cameron, obama and etc - what you say is a real joke..

Posted by: james | Jul 7 2016 23:18 utc | 14

Slightly OT....

Hope Hillary win in Nov, she most likely revenge against the waring fractions in Libya, continue and enlarge the endless wars. Time to ponder what will Putin next moves in Syria, will he continue to supports Dr. Assad and ends the stalemate? When will China engage in Syria and Libya while she herself fighting off the US diplomatically in South China seas?

@rg the lg you set the tone for this thread, thank you...

Posted by: Jack Smith | Jul 7 2016 23:28 utc | 15

@ rg the lg and jack smith.. why don't you two 24/7 usa election spin cycle shit artists take it somewhere else?

Posted by: james | Jul 8 2016 0:44 utc | 16

Hey James (14)
You got me completly wrong. What on earth let you think, with 'mistakes' I would mean not to be west-inclined enough? Would I even read this blog if so?
Libya strongly needs a leader figure. First thing is end the internal conflagration. Only united it has a chance against a west eager to loot the country. There is a small chance that Saif could be this leader. And there is no one else in sight.

Posted by: Pnyx | Jul 8 2016 1:55 utc | 17

I said it from the start.. it will probably be a Gaddafi only that can restore Libya...

What I have to wonder is why Russia and China were either caught off guard, or had no concern for the fate of Gaddafi. Didn't they both abstain on the UN R2P resolution?

That was a strategic disaster for their interests, imho

Posted by: bbbb | Jul 8 2016 2:04 utc | 18

For what it's worth, Oksana Boyko has an enigmatic comment on Twitter about Saif:

My sources tell his mental health is destroyed...

I hope not. And certainly Richard Galustian's article gives no such indication, rather the opposite. Just a note in passing.

Posted by: Grieved | Jul 8 2016 2:10 utc | 19

@ 17 pnyx.. thanks for the clarification.. i wasn't actually sure! lots of different types read this blog..

Posted by: james | Jul 8 2016 2:14 utc | 20

Regarding my posts - I do take it elsewhere.

So, are you an Obama-phile? If so that would explain your rather nasty (as in brutish) comment.

If you've been following along for a while, you'll know that I am totally disinterested in the same old same old politics. Unlike what some think, I am a pacifist in the tradition of Bart De Ligt. Look him up on wikipedia. However, I really do think that only a violent revolution (such as THE French Revolution with pitchforks and Guillotines included) or a nuclear holocaust to cleanse the earth of humanity will actually change anything. I do not advocate violence but I do see it (sadly) as an inevitable necessity in order to effectuate any real change.

Posted by: rg the lg | Jul 8 2016 2:50 utc | 21


Yes, because everything is 'plug and play' in the West today, and political and strategic analyses has been reduced to the level of PewDiePie.

Name a single ousted-regime in history, where, following a civil war carried out by massive external forces, was later reconstituted successfully by an original ruling family progeny.

Go ahead.

I'm still waiting...

OK, Merkel and Hitler, but that wasn't a civil war, that was WW2.

Posted by: Uk Tahder | Jul 8 2016 3:56 utc | 22

I wonder about this son of Ghadaffi. First a quote from the Daily Beast.
"For 10 years the most prominent of Gaddafi’s children had offered many Libyans a glimmer of hope that liberalization might some day come to Libya. At the London School of Economics he obtained a Ph.D.; his thesis was titled The role of civil society in the democratization of global governance institutions: from ‘soft power’ to collective decision-making? At home in Libya, he pushed to release some political prisoners and widened the spectrum of debate in the closed and violently repressive state. He was responsible for bringing representatives of Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch into the country for the first time during his father’s rule, and for questioning the omnipotence of his father’s security apparatus."

He was schooled at London School of Economics, a neo-liberal institution. His thesis on collective decision-making was exactly what Ghadaffi was doing-- the Neighborhood Councils. Ghadaffi (the father) called his system "social anarchism". The workers in the factories even had a voice in deciding what they would produce. I have seen Ghadaffi ride around in an impromptu manner, without security & seen his reception on the street, so the comments about repression are just the typical MSM lies. My memory is that it was this son who talked his father into releasing the very prisoners who then occupied the oil facilities and rose against him, aided by French & US Special Forces.

Nor does the son's bringing AI & HRW into the country speak well of him, as these are NGOs supported by villains, and often lie and help to smuggle arms & fighters.

It is true that Ghadaffi tried to appease the US in his final years in ways that diluted some of his goodness.

" Below is a sample of his writing on socialism.
Third International Theory
The Third International Theory or Third Universal Theory (Arabic: نظرية عالمية ثالثة) refers to the style of Government described by Col. Muammar al-Gaddafi in the early 1970s, on which his government, the Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, was officially based. It was partly inspired by Islamic socialism and Arab nationalism and partly by the principles of direct democracy. It has similarities with the system of Yugoslav municipal self management in Titoist Yugoslavia, and the Yugoslav Third Way during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s as developed by Edvard Kardelj.[1][2] It was proposed as an alternative to capitalism and communism for Third World countries, based on the stated belief that both of these ideologies had been proven invalid.

"The Higher Council for National Guidance was created to disseminate and implement this theory, and it found partial realization in Libya.

"Key provisions of the Third International Theory are outlined in the Green Book (published from 1976–1979, see below article). It is a system of views which criticizes European-style democracy and Soviet Marxism in detail."
--Read more

Posted by: Penelope | Jul 8 2016 4:02 utc | 23

Here's another quote from

"The first results and the nearest tasks of the Libyan revolution were fixed in a public statement on Dec. 11, 1969, a Provisional Constitutional Declaration. Islam was declared the official state religion. It was proclaimed that one of the main goals of the revolution was the building of a form of socialism based on "religion, morality and patriotism." Gaddafi and his companions intended to achieve this through "social justice, high levels of production, the elimination of all forms of exploitation and the equitable distribution of national wealth."

At the end he occupied no constitutional position. They called him "the Leader"; he gave his opinion and they followed it or not, as they liked.

Posted by: Penelope | Jul 8 2016 4:14 utc | 24

rg the lg @21

Don't shoot the messenger.

"Shit artists" may be harsh but posting Off-Topic in the first comment is generally considered trollish behavoir.

I am feeling pretty shitty for having replied to your comment @1 (I had misgivings when I wrote it as I noted).

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 8 2016 5:24 utc | 25

rg the lg's #1 isn't completely OT.
Blum includes Libya, specifically, in his unflattering summary of Obama's intellectual dishonesty and reckless hypocrisy.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 8 2016 5:37 utc | 26

@14 everything is intentional. There is a general absence of consequences for bad policy. Shaming Blair won't do anything at all. Dtto for shaming Sarko, Obama, Billary, Cameron, etc.

Some think-tank consensus came to the conclusion that it's the devine right of the West to lie, murder and steal from any other country. Until it's voted out, or ultimately until this idealism ends in absolute and total failure, the crap should continue on

Posted by: bbbb | Jul 8 2016 5:59 utc | 27

I'll say it one more time and then go away. Allah, Muammar, wa Libya, wa bas!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Fernando Arauxo | Jul 8 2016 6:30 utc | 28

b - I would love to hear your take on this:

Wagenknecht: The worst enemy of the EU is sitting in Brussels, and furthermore, NATO needs to be replaced

We're never going to see anything about this in the western MSM. Frankly, I'm surprised such debate even goes on in the Bundestag. My impression from our MSM is that a phone rings somewhere in the building, followed by a brief conversation in English and then a quick translation into German of the American orders for that day. Everyone nods their heads and a few speeches are given about what a great idea they are for Germany, then they become law.

CNN never told me that dangerous German rebels like this Wagenknecht are allowed to openly question the dictates of the NATO regime. Isn't this the same Bundestag member that called Merkel a U.S. stooge? Isn't Wagenknecht afraid of being droned by the U.S.? Obama is good at that - or so he claims.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Jul 8 2016 7:15 utc | 29

Fernando Arauxo | Jul 8, 2016 2:30:36 AM | 28

Obama, big ass mistake. Green party, get NATO bombs out of Libya.
It would have helped if there were more English, but yeah, I get it; but the U.S. needs a destabilized world for its hegemon.
A world stabilized and organized will defeat the U.S. hegemon.

Posted by: V. Arnold | Jul 8 2016 7:16 utc | 30

'Whether the drive was not serious, or whether it was frustrated by his hardline siblings Moatsem and Khamis, is impossible to know, but he emerges from captivity to find Libya a changed place something he predicted.';

thats what happens when a country is overthrown by revoutionaries. The Zintanis helped to make Libya a 'changed place'....what didnt they like about it before?

'The brutalities of his father’s regime'

what brutalities? its this nonsense spread around that led to Libyas crissis

Posted by: brian | Jul 8 2016 8:51 utc | 31

@29 pw, 'I'm surprised such debate even goes on in the Bundestag'

I think it's the benefit of proportional representation : in addition to the two or three faces of the War and Wall Street Party Germany also has more or less permanent boutique parties which get to speak in the parliament. The decisions are still made by the government du jour of one or the other of the wings of the War and Wall Street Party, but the voices of niche parties do ring out in the parliament.

Like you I was amazed at my first view of Sahra Wagenknecht, quest77 posted a youtube of her ripping into Merkel. Nothing like that in the US Congress. Same result though.

Posted by: jfl | Jul 8 2016 8:57 utc | 32

'The brutalities of his father’s regime'

This is BS, even his enemies could only speak about a single case when during a prison uprising the "regime" "massacred" the prisoners. This is well within the boundaries of what is allowed in Western Democracies.

Posted by: Balu | Jul 8 2016 10:01 utc | 33

"libertarians" Whats this nonsense?

Posted by: Balu | Jul 8 2016 10:03 utc | 34

Mr Galustian mentions a previous article in May. Here is a pertinent quote from the article:

". . .Now consider a further problem. There is an enclave, a small city set in a high impenetrable mountain to the West of Tripoli called Zintan. They are well known as fierce highland fighters; they hold Saif Gaddafi; they also control the gas and oil pipelines that flow through valves in their territory which is to the west of Tripoli that pipe to Zawia where the Italians, Norwegians, and Spanish have huge oil and gas assets and a port.

The UN, in their wisdom, last week sent their military advisor, a serving Italian general, by plane to Zintan to supposedly negotiate. Barely had the plane touched down when he was almost chased back on to his aircraft to make a hasty retreat. Zintan is loyal to the Libyan National Army. . . "

Posted by: juliania | Jul 8 2016 12:37 utc | 35

Here is the link to the article I mentioned above.

Posted by: juliania | Jul 8 2016 12:39 utc | 36

Posted by: juliania | Jul 8, 2016 8:39:39 AM | 36

Very good link, thanks.
They have Saif Gaddafi: That sounds a key import for the future; we'll see...

Posted by: V. Arnold | Jul 8 2016 13:10 utc | 37

Al-Manar claims that Saif Gaddafi is still in jail

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jul 8 2016 13:25 utc | 38

Piotr Berman | Jul 8, 2016 9:25:50 AM | 38

No, he was released recently.

Posted by: V. Arnold | Jul 8 2016 13:29 utc | 39

Concerning Merkel, I wonder if she will survive till the end of the term. "Post-Communist" Linke is one thing, but her course of action on Ukraine, Russia, refugees etc. has opposition in her own coalition as well.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jul 8 2016 13:31 utc | 40

Does Saddam have any spawn to take over Iraq,again?
I hope Saif can be a ray of light for Libya.
Blum is a Jew,and mentions it in that screed about Trump.
Trust them at your peril.
Trump is no Obomba,he's an American for America,not Zion,and not globalization and all its poison.
Wrap your ignorance tightly,it must be comforting.
Tony Blair article in Graun;The world is better off post Iraq.What do you think they ask the readers?
But they had no reader response!Hahahahahaha.....

Posted by: dahoit | Jul 8 2016 13:44 utc | 41

The US have made failed states of: Afghanistan, Iraq (took twice to do that), the former Yugoslavian, Somalia and Eritrea (with proxy forces from Ethiopia), Libya, Syria. Indeed the US empire of chaos.

Posted by: okie farmer | Jul 8 2016 13:56 utc | 42


I would assume that Saif will make a statement if he really has been released.

On the other hand, perhaps he has no interest in leading Libya, and just wants to escape the country.

Posted by: Inkan1969 | Jul 8 2016 14:18 utc | 43


dahoit, a mission of this blog is to oppose Fascist movements such as Privy Sector in Ukraine. Instead, you embrace the comparable fascism indulged in Trump's rhetoric as well as those groups hate-mongering by attacking Blum for being a "Jew". Not a Neo-Con, not even a Zionist, a "Jew".

Trump's extenuation of Saddam for being tough on terrorists mirrors this comment board's glorification of dictatorship. Libya's solution cannot be a strongman, be it Saif Gaddafi or Khalifa Haftar. People in the Middle East should not be trapped in a binary choice of eternal dictatorship or violent anarchy.

Posted by: Inkan1969 | Jul 8 2016 14:34 utc | 45

Good article Richard. Bad you know having met the guy a few times I always thought he had potential to unite a post Gaddafi snr world. He screwed up when he sided with daddy

Posted by: Graham | Jul 8 2016 15:26 utc | 46

@21 rg the lg.. i don't live in the usa and i'm not an obama-phile... turning every fucking thread into an endless conversation on usa politics is tiring and grating.. jack smith doesit all this time.. try staying on topic. thanks.

Posted by: james | Jul 8 2016 16:08 utc | 47

I am NOT turning every thread into a political screed re the US. Name one country that isn't so fouled up by either the US and/or the EU; one that is not ruled by oligarchs for oligarchs? When you do identify one look at how the empire is working to wipe out that country.

Regarding 'ON TOPIC' ... yes Blum was talking about Obama, and he was identifying places 'my personal' oligarchs are attempting to destabilize ... or which are already destabilized. I suspect yours either has been or soon will be a target for the empire. Malignant Overlords more than likely rule you as well. Thus, the MO in the US have a deleterious affect on you as well. Or, perhaps you like their rule. Hard to say!

Posted by: rg the lg | Jul 8 2016 16:45 utc | 48

bbbb | Jul 7, 2016 10:04:57 PM | 18: What I have to wonder is why Russia and China were either caught off guard, or had no concern for the fate of Gaddafi. Didn't they both abstain on the UN R2P resolution?
That was a strategic disaster for their interests, imho

It was most certainly a strategic disaster for their interests. If you read the wording of that UNSC resolution there was nothing in there that gave NATO the authority to provide tactical air support for the Salafi led rebels to overthrow Khadaffi. It was some vaguely worded "no fly zone" resolution. Medvedev let that happen by abstaining on the SC vote. The Chinese went along with the Russians.

For internal Russian political reasons (which I do not understand) Putin allowed Medvedev to stay in government. However, he was politically neutered by that act. The Russians and Chinese are fully aware that they were snookered. It will not happen again.

Posted by: ToivoS | Jul 8 2016 17:04 utc | 49

james@47 - I DO live in the U.S. and agree with you wholeheartedly.

rg the lg@48 - I enjoy reading your opinions, rg. Don't turn this into a pissing match with James of all people. Collectively, all the posts on Obama/Hillary/Trump simply reiterate points already made many, many times. We get it.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Jul 8 2016 18:07 utc | 50

Piotr Berman@38, V. Arnold@39 - I was scouring the interwebs last night trying to get a handle on which was the case or where the rumor got started (either way). No conclusion - both stories claims exist on a number of new outlets, and both are refuted on a number of sites claiming the other is wrong.

I think Mark Kersten sums it up nicely in his Justice in Conflict blog:

Updated: What We Know (and Don’t Know) About Saif Gaddafi’s ‘Release’

To sum up: His lawyers say he was released in April, Zintani military and civil officials say no way. Probable: he has been granted some degree of 'liberty' in Zintani (like house arrest vs. prison shackles) but Zintani officials are unlikely to just let him leave. He's probably holed up somewhere in Zintani and isn't going anywhere soon - regardless of his claimed legal status.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Jul 8 2016 18:28 utc | 51

I really doubt that Saif will be embraced by the Libyan people; certainly not in the East of the Country. Saif may find friends in the tribes of Bani Walid and Tarhuna, Warshafana and even Sirte, but he will not be a unifying factor. Saif is overestimated in this article and he is a weak individual who had other people paint artwork for him that he paraded around the world as his own work. His thesis(dissertation)from the London School of Economics was found to have been written for him by a professor who was forced to resign upon the breaking of the scandal. There is also the indictment against him from the ICC that needs clearing up, he still is wanted by them.

So no, however romantic the idea; Libya needs a fresh, solid new start and not some mediocre has-been who has no back bone nor a strong , independent character. He has his chance, he blew it. The late King of Libya Idriss; his grandson would be a better choice as he is so much better spoken and more intellectual than Saif.

The future of Libya relies on the coming together of Libya's main tribes and a power sharing agreement hashed out amongst them. As Libya is a highly tribal society.

Posted by: bored muslim | Jul 8 2016 18:37 utc | 52

bored muslim@52 - "...and not some mediocre has-been who has no back bone nor a strong , independent character.

This sounds like the exact kind of flawed, psychopathic characters the CIA looks for to run their latest U.S. puppet regimes. Too bad for the CIA that Saif's family name is Gaddafi and he's wanted by the ICC.

If I live to be a thousand, I will never be able to apologize enough to the Libyan people for my country's intentional destruction of theirs. Said is right about one thing: it will probably take 40 years to put Libya together again.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Jul 8 2016 19:01 utc | 53

It would seem the whole purpose of creating a 'failed state' was to insure no pre-existing social or political structures remained operative or even standing. Revolution may replace a prior political or social power with another but social structures usually remain intact or so modified to remove resistance to the subsequent managing parties.

When Gaddafi replaced King Idris in 1969, most existing social, economic, military and political structures remained intact or were so modified as to assist the wishes of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi's junta. The 'NATO' 2011 attack succeeded in destroying completely those infrastructures; nothing remains. It beggars the imagination that any mature thinking adult would even consider some individual would be capable of rebuilding or maintaining any significant fraction of the structures destroyed, however such thinking is normal for jejune adolescents fully entranced in a dream world. It is most likely, any Gaddafi family surviving will be in such a state of trauma as to be incapacitated to fill such a rôle actively had nothing been destroyed. Any Gaddafi family survivor's only use is as front for nefarious interests giving the appearance of legitimacy to their agendas. They are unlikely to willingly comply with such affront.

The political power structure of the Libyan nation state has been completely shattered. It will be replaced by either an organic growth, over time from indigenous sources or it will be imposed by force from without. Only one will provide long term results. In the meantime Libya's wealth will be purloined until it is gone; of that you can be fully assured.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Jul 8 2016 19:17 utc | 54

PavewayIV @53:

I will never be able to apologize enough to the Libyan people ...

Is it still you're country? Is it still a government of the people, by the people, and for the people?

Don't be so hard on yourself. Those who made the decision and benefit from that decision are very much removed from the rest of us.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 8 2016 20:13 utc | 55

@48 rg the lg.. lets talk about it on an open thread. thanks.

@53-55 i agree very strongly with this line of thinking in the 3/4 posts..

Posted by: james | Jul 8 2016 20:47 utc | 56

Jackrabbit@55 - "Is it still you're country?" Yes, it's my country and I am 100% responsible for anything done in its name anywhere on earth. That's just my nutty personal opinion. I was probably dropped on my head as a child.

"...Is it still a government of the people, by the people, and for the people?..."

No, but the government is just the hired help. They should have been replaced long ago, but the only people interested in the job seem to be the exact same kind of self-serving psychopathic parasites that infest it today. We did ask good, honest people that understand the Constitution to work for the U.S. government, but they refuse. It's kind of like asking them if they want herpes. Someone came up with the idea of outsourcing much of our government to Israel, but that doesn't seem to be working - we all feel like Palestinians now. I don't know at this point... maybe robots?

"Don't be so hard on yourself.

Why not? If I would have had the courage to take up the pitchfork and torch against the psychopathic bullies that I allow to run my country, then maybe a million Iraqis and a quarter million Syrians (and on and on) would still be alive today. Instead, I became one of the bullies hired thugs in the mistaken impression that I was actually helping someone. John got that part right.

The guys that 'solved' the parasitic oligarch problem here 240 years ago used outdoor bathrooms, had wooden teeth and had to plan the revolution in pubs, without a defense budget and against one of the strongest armies and navies on earth. What can I possibly use as an excuse?

"...Those who made the decision and benefit from that decision are very much removed from the rest of us."

Yes, but I'm the closest one with the pitchforks and torches and I do pay the bastards. It's really my problem to solve.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Jul 8 2016 21:04 utc | 57

@ Paveway,

If only more and more Americans thought like you do. And I do agree with you, in fact the Arab people as a whole deserve a huge apology from the U.S. The American people must somehow take back their foreign and financial policy from the 5th column Israel firsters(see Jewish supremacism) that control the U.S ; then and only then will the Arabs, and in fact the rest of the world breath a big sigh of relief.

Posted by: bored muslim | Jul 8 2016 22:50 utc | 58


I am 67 and have been stewing in your juice for 40+ years. It is encouraging to read about others having the same feelings and believe that our numbers can grow into meaningful change.

Let me know if you need some cannon fodder.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Jul 9 2016 0:07 utc | 59

"a mission of this blog is to oppose Fascist movements" ~ #45

I have been reading this blog and making a very rare comment since before Bilmon closed up shop for good. I even survived the temporary closing (or stoppage) of moonofalabama.

I never knew that opposing fascist movements was the purpose of the blog. Fascism is a term denoting an economic system. It is also called "corporatism" (Mussolini's term) or "crony-capitalism". I'll not describe it as you can look it up. The USA has been a fascist economic system since the 30's of last century. I am certainly against the merger of government and big industry but I thought the real purpose of this blog was to fight the warmongering we see all around us and to fight any government tyranny.

If I am wrong, then I guess radical libertarians are not needed or welcome here.

Posted by: Mark Stoval | Jul 9 2016 11:20 utc | 60

@60 MS

Beware the Inkan defining, or limiting, b's intentions. Actually, I don't think b pays much attention to us.

Posted by: jfl | Jul 9 2016 12:07 utc | 61

Bravo, now wait for the knuckleheads to call you all sorts of nasty names.

there seems to be some kind of twisted patriotism in our country in that you must support the cause of the day and never reflect upon the consequences of those actions. Vietnam is conveniently forgotten, wars of choice throughout central and south America are never discussed along with the support we gave murderous dictators there. the most common opinion regarding other people and places is that we should turn their world to glass and let God sort them out.

Even the host at SST has come from being an enabler and supporter of those kinds of things in the middle and far east to someone who believes as I do that the job of the military is to defend our country from would be invaders.

again, eloquently said and dead on. thanks for that

Posted by: dan of steele | Jul 9 2016 14:23 utc | 62

I am certainly against the merger of government and big industry but I thought the real purpose of this blog was to fight the warmongering we see all around us and to fight any government tyranny.
If I am wrong, then I guess radical libertarians are not needed or welcome here.
Posted by: Mark Stoval | Jul 9, 2016 7:20:38 AM | 60

I'm pretty sure that "the merger of government and big industry" is an entrenched disease in the West and that "warmongering" is merely a symptom. Big Industry owns the govt in the West and persuades the Govt to engage in warmongering at times and places of BI's choosing - at taxpayers expense (minimises damage to the bottom line).

Just as "fighting ISIS" is an exercise in futility, fighting "my" govt is just as futile because your govt (need I remind you?) doesn't listen to you. It listens to, and obeys, its owners. The smartest way to fight ISIS is to break the nexus between ISIS and its sponsors by punishing those sponsors severely. Similarly, the smartest way to break the Govt/Industry nexus is by punishing the owners severely. I don't blame closet "libertarians" for feeling faint-hearted at the prospect of doing real and quantifiable harm to billionaires and shareholders, but if you can't even figure out the difference between a disease and a symptom, you'll be just as ineffectual if you remain in the closet and continue to do nothing but TALK and dream of unicorns.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 9 2016 15:33 utc | 63

re: #1
A Canadian general, Charles Bouchard, RCAF led the NATO bombing of Libya. The Canadian parliament unanimously approved a resolution of support and feted Bouchard, now CEO of Lockheed Martin Canada as a hero afterwards, even the so-called social democratic NDP.
Looks like the new PM will follow a similar pro-NATO course. Announced the day after Obama visited Ottawa.

Canadian-Led Battle Group Will Deploy To Latvia, Part of NATO Move To Deter Russia

Posted by: John Gilberts | Jul 9 2016 17:56 utc | 64

@62, Dan

Look no further than 5th column Zio's as 'would be invaders'

Posted by: bored muslim | Jul 9 2016 19:08 utc | 65

Air traffic recordings suggest Benghazi-based Khalifa Haftar is backed by French, British and US forces despite his opposition to Tripoli government

Posted by: Les | Jul 9 2016 19:49 utc | 66

@64 john gilberts... as a canuck - reading your post is very depressing. thanks for the info.

Posted by: james | Jul 9 2016 20:24 utc | 67

paveway, as always thanks for your many enlightened comments.

Posted by: james | Jul 9 2016 20:27 utc | 68

dan of steele@62 - "there seems to be some kind of twisted patriotism in our country in that you must support the cause of the day and never reflect upon the consequences of those actions."

This deserves more attention, Dan. It calls to mind an interesting comment from the Daily Shooter on 21st Century Wire regarding the Dallas shooting:

"...Finally, this event will be used to reinforce and heighten the ever-increasing profile of America’s bizarre new post-9/11 Cult of the First Responder, which appears to be an extension of the ‘Cult of Our Boys’, a lionization campaign which was developed by the Pentagon over years of mass US troop deployment in two highly unpopular wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The main thrust of the effort to glorify and assert to preeminence of the First Responder is part and parcel of a wider US agenda to fully militarize US domestic society, and to characterize US public life as a combat zone, or domestic war zone which society devolves its authority and constant crisis management over to America’s new unified command structure and Gendarmerie – the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the FBI..."

I don't like the use of 'first responder' because this lumps EMTs and firemen in with police. I would rather call it "Cult of the Hero Cop" today. This isn't to detract from the good work police do, but calls out the poisoning of the well to prevent any examination of questionable police actions and motives as somehow unpatriotic and anti-cop. Almost like we're being groomed to be as submissive to authority as possible - "The state knows best." It's damn disturbing.

I'm not sure I buy the entire grand conspiracy the Daily Shooter is suggesting, but he(she?) makes several good points. Media coverage of any questionable police shootings are just dripping with suggestions of "Cult of the Hero Cop." No critical thinking or cell phone video necessary - you are evil if you don't support the Hero Cops story. How dare you question them?

You have to admit the strategy works great in the U.S. - it's kept us involved in immoral, illegal wars for at least fifty-plus years (Yeah, I know it's longer...) with a minimum amount of objections from the sheeple.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Jul 9 2016 20:28 utc | 69

ot - @69 paveway.. i have noticed a lot of the 'cult of the military' in the usa too.. if you are or were a part of the armed forces, you need to be venerated without question.. i guess venerating war in faraway lands is harder to do and the inability of the usa to actually honour those who have fought in wars seems especially striking in contrast.. all the health issues, (mental or phyiscal) that are a byproduct of serving these wars in faraway lands doesn't get addressed very well, but one must always honour those in uniform.. and as it turns out, if you still have some wits about you, you can apply for a job in security or as a policemen given you respect for authority... just don't ask questions and follow orders.. i guess i have a hard time with most of that.

i know there are 'pat lang' types who will say it is none of my business as i live in canada, but as an outsider one can't help observe a deep veneration( by a large part of the usa as portrayed to this canuck) that borders of sickness in all that it claims to venerate... now it is the 'cult of the hero cop'... seems like all that has to happen is to morph the one into the other... all of it is bowing down to authority figures in uniforms, as they know right, even if they don't.. sorry for the rant, but your post got me to thinking of this 'cult of veneration for military people' however right or wrong or misplaced it is.. i have never understood the desire on the part of some people to wrap themselves in a flag, or bow down to some 'king' or what not. self preservation would explain part of it, but if being locked in a (mental) prison cell is part of self p. i am not for it..

Posted by: james | Jul 9 2016 21:23 utc | 70

The brutalities of his father’s regime have since been matched by those of some of the militias that overthrew him

And what brutalities would those be? Genocide? No, thats favorite pastime of NATO's "freedom fighters", Gaddafi never did that in over 40+ years of his rule. Actually he was among the most benign leaders in region ("peaceful" Nutjobyahoo and Erdogan are much worse, what to speak of others), and yet just as with another non-violent leader Assad, West's propaganda made them look like brutal bloodthirsty dictators, which has nothing to do with reality.

So why Galustian falls for Western propaganda?

Speaking of Saif uniting Libya - yeah, it wont happen. Saif could swear up and down that he would be a loyal puppet to the West, and still he wouldnt be selected due to massive BS spilled on his family. Libyans would elect themselves? Yeah, as if anybody will ask them. There will be "elections" games played, but leaders will be selected elsewhere.

Posted by: Harry | Jul 9 2016 21:37 utc | 71

@71, Harry, 'So why Galustian falls for Western propaganda?'

To make a buck as advisor to the TNCs when the gold rush starts? I don't think it's 'falls for' so much as authors.

Posted by: jfl | Jul 9 2016 22:16 utc | 72

Children of Kaddafi.

Aisha (Ayesha etc.) Kaddafi, former mediator and UN goodwill ambassador, into all kinds of humanitarian stuff, former lawyer (W law degrees) for Saddam Hussein, is also ‘on the cards.’ Women’s magazines in Europe make a big deal of her. I was at the hairdresser last week and the ladies were saying maybe Aisha would be better than Saif.

She fled with children etc. to Algeria. She created many problems, the Telegraph for ex. reports, afaik hyped but true,

Shelves in the library went up in flames, as she regularly attacked army personnel looking after her safety. The last straw was when the bleach blonde nicknamed the “Claudia Schiffer of North Africa” destroyed a portrait of Algerian president Abdul Aziz Bouteflika, local newspaper Ennahar reported.

She was finally expelled (?) or encouraged to leave and was given political asylum in Oman (2012) and has been there since.

see for ex article from fort russ

About Hannibal Kadaffi and his wife Aline, you don’t want to know, too gruesome, gut chilling.

Saif has always been presented as the one ‘reasonable’ one, degree from LSE and all that. Also into humanitarian and charity stuff, and giving up WMD by Lybia, and admitting that the AIDS scandal was badly handled, the nurses had been tortured. Wiki on him lists many such moves.

I doubt he is beloved by a majority of the Lybian people.

Posted by: Noirette | Jul 10 2016 16:06 utc | 73

With huge thanks for all you do. Spectacular:

Posted by: Felicity | Jul 10 2016 17:49 utc | 74

Is this what it is - a denial, disinfo or both from the GNA?

Sputniknews International:

Libyan Government of National Accord Confirms Gaddafi's Son Remains in Jail

“The Libyan Government of National Accord (GNA) has confirmed that Saif Islam, son of the country's long-time leader Muammar Gaddafi, remains in custody, the GNA statement said Sunday.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Tuesday, France24 broadcaster, citing Gaddafi son's attorney, reported that he was released from a prison in Libya in line with the amnesty issued by the Tobruk-based Council of Deputies. On Friday, authorities of the Libyan western city of Zintan refuted media reports, claiming that Islam was behind bars.”

Posted by: likklemore | Jul 10 2016 19:38 utc | 75

@73 Good revelations.. The Gaddafi children seem to be pretty bad people.. The thing is that they carry the brand that can rally Libyans.

At the end of the day whomever runs these smaller countries will probably be not-so-nice people, but they will generally need to be well-enough behaved puppets for international scrutiny.

Having a petulant woman in Aisha might be better than having, say, Pinochet or Pol Pot, if you know what I mean.

Posted by: bbbb | Jul 10 2016 20:06 utc | 76

james@70 - I agree, James. I would call it 'Cult of the Hero Soldier' here in the U.S. It was weird and disturbing to me as a vet and I can tell you there are plenty of others like me. I don't even care for the plastic "Thanks for your service!" that's thrown around everywhere here. Most of us were not in actual, real combat and made no special sacrifices. If people are feeling especially grateful for some reason, I can introduce them to plenty of widows, orphans and disabled vets that did sacrifice something and could use some actual material help, not hollow platitudes.

The absolute worst part of this 'Cult of the Hero Soldier' is that it was such an obvious PR campaign trotted out to sell Middle East wars under the guise of fake gratitude. ALberto mentioned Pat Tillman in another thread. He was a football player that gave up a $3 million pro contract to join the army after 9/11. By the end of his tour in Afghanistan, he would have punched anyone in the face that thanked him for his service. His reply would have been, "Thanks for WHAT, you frickin' idiot? Do you have any idea at all what your country is doing to Afghanistan?" Plenty of Iraqi vets would have done the same thing. And while it's nice Viet Nam vets finally got some recognition, I would bet my last dollar that many of them would have reacted the same way back in the day.

Canada will do the same thing if they keep mindlessly sending their troops everywhere, James. It's great for quashing dissent and shaming otherwise rational and critically-thinking individuals. "You're not against the troops, are you, you bastard?? How dare you!"

No citizens of any country should allow their governments to send people off to unconstitutional, illegal and immoral wars for the benefit of Israel, Saudi Arabia, the sado-neocons or the NATO MIC. Then nobody will need to make any sacrifices and you won't need to embarrass anyone by thanking them for their useless service that saved nobody.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Jul 11 2016 6:38 utc | 77

@67 james: Here's more as Trudeau visits Kiev

Ukraine Will Buy Weapons From Canada

Posted by: John Gilberts | Jul 11 2016 7:17 utc | 78

Saif should still be a prisoner according to the Libyan Herald and the pardon may not hold up.

Posted by: Poul | Jul 11 2016 10:03 utc | 79

this passage is rubbish:
'The brutalities of his father’s regime have since been matched by those of some of the militias that overthrew him, most visibly the grim beating of his brother Saadi in a Tripoli jail which his captors filmed in gruesome detail.'

what brutalities? lets take a look at Gaddafis Libya

'Under the revolutionary leadership of Muammar Qaddafi, Libya has attained the highest standard of living in Africa. In 2007, in an article which appeared in the African Executive Magazine, Norah Owaraga noted that Libya, “unlike other oil producing countries such as Nigeria and Saudi Arabia, utilized the revenue from its oil to develop its country. The standard of living of the people of Libya is one of the highest in Africa, falling in the category of countries with a GNP per capita of between USD 2,200 and 6,000.”
This is all the more remarkable when we consider that in 1951 Libya was officially the poorest country in the world. According to the World Bank, the per capita income was less than $50 a year - even lower than India. Today, all Libyans own their own homes and cars. Two Fleet Street journalists, David Blundy and Andrew Lycett, who are by no means supporters of the Libyan revolution, had this to say:
“The young people are well dressed, well fed and well educated. Libyans now earn more per capita than the British. The disparity in annual incomes... is smaller than in most countries. Libya's wealth has been fairly spread throughout society. Every Libyan gets free, and often excellent, education, medical and health services. New colleges and hospitals are impressive by any international standard. All Libyans have a house or a flat, a car and most have televisions, video recorders and telephones. Compared with most citizens of the Third World countries, and with many in the First World, Libyans have it very good indeed.” (Source: Qaddafi and the Libyan Revolution)
Large scale housing construction has taken place right across the country. Every citizen has been given a decent house or apartment to live in rent-free. In Qaddafi’s Green Book it states: “The house is a basic need of both the individual and the family, therefore it should not be owned by others.” This dictum has now become a reality for the Libyan people.
Large scale agricultural projects have been implemented in an effort to “make the desert bloom” and achieve self-sufficiency in food production. Any Libyan who wants to become a farmer is given free use of land, a house, farm equipment, some livestock and seed.'etc

Posted by: brian | Aug 1 2016 12:25 utc | 80

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