Wednesday, June 15, 2011

US war on Libya about oil: report

The US has special interest to acquire Libyan oil reserves, a report by anti-war group A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition says (file photo).

Source: Press TV

A prominent anti-war group has slammed the US-led NATO mission in Libya, saying that the military campaign only aims to plunder the North African state's oil reserves.

Brian Becker of the A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition wrote on Monday that Libya is today resisting a new colonialism as well as forces loyal to Libya's embattled leader Muammar Gaddafi.

These “colonizers,” he said, usually assign noble names such as “protecting civilians” to their military missions both in the Middle East and Africa.

And now they are using the corporate-owned media coverage about their “humanitarian motives” to “disguise their crass and cynical plans in Libya and elsewhere,” Becker's statement read.

He added that according to WikiLeaks-released State Department cables from November 2007 and afterwards, the United States has been constantly worried about who should control Libya's vast oil reserves.

In 2004, former US President George W. Bush lifted economic sanctions against Libya, opening the doors of Libya's vast oil reserves on western-owned oil corporations.

However, during past years, Washington feared a nationalization of Libya's resources.

“Those who dominate Libya's political and economic leadership are pursuing increasingly nationalistic policies in the energy sector that could jeopardize efficient exploitation of Libya's extensive oil and gas reserves,” the November 2007 cable states.

A popular uprising against Gaddafi and the opening of a civil war in mid-February, however, gave the West a perfect pretext to overthrow the Libyan regime and place in power a government that would serve as a client regime.

Just weeks later, under a UN-mandate, the Western military alliance NATO, assumed control of a military campaign to impose a no-fly zone over the country and “save civilian lives.”

Since then NATO jets have been dropping devastating bunker-busting bombs on Gaddafi's strongholds in an attempt to assassinate him.

One son and several grandchildren have died, but Gaddafi has survived.

This is while reports say scores of civilians as well as revolutionaries have so-far been killed in NATO's aerial offensives.

Interestingly, in mid-May 2011, just six weeks after the NATO bombing of Libya began, leaders of the Western-backed Transitional National Council, the self-proclaimed legitimate government of Libya, came to Washington for “talks.”

They spoke at the US-Libya Business Council and together with top ranking US officials formed a public relations/lobbying organization based in Washington, called the Harbour Group.

The principals of the Harbour Group include Hillary Clinton's staff director from the 1992 presidential campaign of Bill Clinton. Another served as a spokesperson for the presidential campaigns of Ronald Reagan and other conservative Republicans. The third served as a public relations figure in the last three Democratic presidential conventions, according to Reuters.

On June 8, 2011, the first shipment of Libyan oil arrived to the US.

Libya, which has the largest oil reserves in Africa and the ninth largest in the world with 41.5 billion barrels as of 2007, has been a big prize for western oil giants.

The US government and oil industry surveys state that Libya has 63 years of reserves at current production rates if no new reserves were to be found. However, Libya is considered to have many unexplored reserves.

As the current war continues unabated in the troubled country, critics say that Libyan people must keep paying a bloody price for the West's unquenchable oil thirst.

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