Abayomi Azikiwe, editor of the Pan-African News Wire, at the MECAWI office in Detroit, on March 15, 2008, right before the downtown demonstration against the fifth anniversary of the Iraq war. (Photo: Alan Pollock)., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
The Gaddafi Legacy & Libya’s Contribution to the African Revolution
Imperialists, puppet lies cannot mask its crimes and struggles for genuine liberation
By Abayomi Azikiwe
Editor, Pan-African News Wire
Note: The following talk was delivered at the Detroit public meeting in honor of the life and struggles of the martyred African leader Col. Muammar Gaddafi (1942-2011) of Libya. The event was held on October 29, 2011. This seminar was sponsored by Workers World Party in Detroit.
This is one of the most important meetings that we have organized this year. We are not new to the struggle against imperialism and neo-colonialism in Africa and other parts of the world. Through the Michigan Emergency Committee Against War & Injustice (MECAWI) we have been consistent for nine years in our efforts to both prevent and end wars of aggression waged by the United States and its allies.
In every war that has been waged by the U.S. since its inception there is always the demonization of the victims of imperialist militarism. Going back to the days of the forced removal of the Native peoples and the enslavement of Africans, there is always the necessity on the part of the ruling class to denigrate and create fear against the targets of their oppression and exploitation.
In Vietnam, it was the false notion that if the country was united under socialism that there would be a so-called “domino effect” where communism would spread throughout Asia. This was also true of the U.S. war against Korea during the early 1950s when millions were killed in order to prevent the consolidation of power by the Worker’s Party headed by Kim Il Sung.
In Vietnam and throughout Southeast Asia it has been reported that over one million people died as a result of this French and later U.S. war. In Korea during the period after World War II and the era of aggression starting in 1948 and extending through 1950-53, it is estimated that four million lost their lives to stop communism in the Peninsula.
On the African continent in the post-World War II period there has been the war for the liberation of Algeria where a million people were reported killed by French imperialism. In the former Portuguese colonies of Mozambique, Angola, Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde over a million were killed during the struggle for national liberation and the post-independence defense of the revolutions in Mozambique and Angola.
In Angola, the Cuban internationalist forces played a decisive role between 1975-1988, when the racist-apartheid South African Defense Forces (SADF) suffered monumental losses on the battle field to consolidate the total independence of Angola and the liberation of Namibia. In Mozambique during the 1980s, the Zimbabwe Defense Forces came to the assistance of the FRELIMO government that was under attack by the apartheid-funded MNR units that devastated the country in its infancy. The ZDF secured the Beira Corridor that provided a lifeline from the Indian Ocean through Mozambique into Zimbabwe.
In South Africa after the defeat of the SADF in Angola and the independence process in Namibia resulting in its independence in 1990, apartheid would eventually fall with the victory of the African National Congress (ANC) in the first non-racial elections in 1994. Nonetheless, this did not bring about the end of foreign intervention on the African continent.
“Humanitarian Missions”, Proxy Wars and “Anti-Terrorism”
In December 1992, a template of what the future would bring was clearly illustrated with the U.S. Marine invasion of Somalia. This intervention was carried out under the guise of a “humanitarian mission” to provide food and material aid to the Somalian people recovering from drought and civil war.
However, it would only be a few months before the U.S. imperialist armed forces in Somalia would show their true intentions. The masses of Somalis rose up in armed resistance during 1993 against U.S. imperialism and its allies and would within a relatively short period of time drive the Marines and their United Nations counterparts out of the Horn of Africa nation.
In 1994, the Rwandan civil war resulted in the mass killings of people within this central African state. The leadership of the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) fought against the government forces and took power in the aftermath of the genocide.
The RPF however, had close ties with the United States under the Clinton administration. This was also true of the close allies of the RPF, the National Resistance Movement (NRM) ruling party in neighboring Uganda.
In late 1996, the Lumumbaist Congolese People’s Revolutionary Party (CPRP) headed by Laurent Kabila entered the eastern region of the-then Zaire. As a result of attacks leveled against the Tutsi ethnic group in eastern Zaire and other interests, there was a temporary alliance established between the Congolese forces headed by Kabila and the RPF of Rwanda and NRM of Uganda.
By May of 1997, the Alliance of Democratic Forces for Liberation (ADFL) that consisted of various social groups inside Congo, had taken control of the country and renamed it the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). By the following year the Kabila government had requested the departure of the Rwandan and Ugandan troops from the country.
This did not go over well with either country and at the aegis of the United States, Rwanda and Uganda attempted to take control of the government in the DRC. War erupted prompting the intervention of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) states of Zimbabwe, Angola and Namibia in defense of the DRC.
By 2003 the war had wound down and the peace between the various belligerent states did not necessarily translate to the various militia groups who would continue to fight each other and the central government in Kinshasha. The DRC contains a vast reservoir of strategic minerals that are essential to the world capitalist system.
In the aftermath of the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon in New York and Washington, D.C. respectively on September 11, 2001, more pressure was brought to bare against various African states. In Somalia, which had ran US imperialism out in 1993, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and US Special Forces were deployed in order to influence the political situation inside the country.
Even prior to 2001, the oil-rich nation of Sudan had been bombed in August 1998 by the US government under Democratic President Bill Clinton in the aftermath of the attacks against the American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. The Clinton administration claimed at the time that Osama bin Laden had taken refuge in Sudan and that the obliteration of the al-Shifa pharmaceutical plant was necessary but it was a cover for the production of chemical weapons.
No evidence of this was ever revealed and the owner of the plant forced the US to unfreeze assets associated with his business activities in the United States. Looking back on these attacks in 1998, along with the bombing of Afghanistan, illustrated that the events on September 11, 2001 were utilized as a mere pretext for further militarism in Asia, the Middle East and Africa.
By 2006 in Somalia, the country was undergoing a political revolution of sorts. The Islamic Courts Union (ICU) had brought together various factions and social groups inside the country that were taking actions independent of the United States foreign policy in the Horn of Africa region. This was perceived by the Bush administration as a threat to US aims in the region and they set out to overturn the influence of the ICU.
The US funded warlords in Somalia to fight against the ICU forces to no avail. By the end of 2006, the Bush administration would convince the neighboring governments of Ethiopia and Kenya to take hostile postures towards the growing influence of the ICU. Ethiopia would invade Somalia at the aegis of the US in order to reverse the influence of the ICU.
This intervention by Ethiopia was another US proxy invasion linked with the so-called "war on terrorism." Although the Ethiopian government denied that they were acting on behalf of US interests, subsequent documents would reveal just the opposite.
The Ethiopian invasion of Somalia created the conditions for the worst humanitarian situation in the world. By the end of 2008, hundreds of thousands would be displaced and thousands were dead. Ethiopia withdrew from the country and the US was able to split the ICU into moderate and radical factions. The youth wing, Al-Shabaab, demanding the withdrawal of both the AMISOM forces and Ethiopia, prompted a realignment of political interests in Somalia.
Consequently, Al-Shabaab became the focus of US foreign policy in Somalia linking the organization to al-Qaeda. Today Al-Shabaab fights on amid the bombing of the country by the US and France as well as a land invasion by another neighboring pro-US regime in Kenya.
The aim of the Kenyan land invasion into Somalia is to crush Al-Shabaab and force the movement to abandon the port at Kismayo which serves as a base for the ongoing resistance to US influence in the Horn of Africa. US imperialism has built up regional support for this renewed war in Somalia but there is resistance inside the country and throughout the region.
Libya and the Struggle Against Neo-Colonialism
What does the developments in other countries in North Africa, Central Africa, the Horn of Africa and Southern Africa have to do with the current US-NATO war against Libya, everything. As a whole the African continent has for centuries been struggling against slavery, colonialism, imperialism and neo-colonialism.
Libya gained its national independence from Italy in 1951 after decades of armed and political efforts to win liberation. The region of North Africa is considered the cradle of world civilization where next to the area that became known as Libya, the ancient Egyptians built the first elements of urban life with mathematics, engineering, water distribution systems, agriculture, architecture, philosophy, weaponry, art, and highly sophisticated philosophical and religious systems.
According to South African journalist Ruth First, “The Ancient Greeks gave the name Libya to all North Africa west of Egypt, but for many centuries the terms Tripoli or Barbary (after the corsairs who practiced piracy in the Mediterranean) were used instead. It was in 1934, after the completion of the Italian conquest of Cyrenaica and Tripolitania, that the two provinces were united under Italian over-rule as the colony of Libya. The independent State that was established in 1951 kept that name as the one associated with the region from the ancient times.” (Ruth First, Libya: The Elusive Revolution, 1974)
First then goes on to discuss the geographical differences between the various regions of Libya and the impact this had on the colonial system established by the Italians. She notes that “The political divisions of the former provinces of Cyrenaica, Tripolitania, and Fezzan corresponded with the country’s natural physical barriers and differences. Geography had made the ancient affiliations of the two coastal regions dissimilar—Cyrenaica’s early history was influenced by Greece and Egypt, whereas Tripolitania fell under Rome and was close to Tunisia.” (First, p. 31)
This author then goes on to examine the influence of the Arab migration within North Africa saying “The Arab invasions had unifying effects on the population, as did the Turkish occupation in the sixteenth century. But the three provinces were never closely unified, and successive foreign powers, whether they controlled all of modern Libya or only parts of it, generally continued to follow the natural divisions of the country in the shape of their administrations. Libya in more recent times has been not so much an artificial political entity as one which physical conditions mitigated against. The basis for the modern state was laid by international diplomacy after the end of the Second World War, but it was to be the demands of the oil economy which created a unified state.” (First, p. 31)
Consequently, the imposition of colonialism and the oil industry which largely served the interests of imperialism, served as the basis for the political economy of the post-independence state. The regional differences among the population have been utilized as a brake upon both the anti-colonial struggle as well as the quest for genuine economic liberation in the aftermath of independence from Europe.
It is these differences and the dependency of the post-colonial states on the imperialist countries that has laid the basis for neo-colonialism, the major impediment for the development of Africa today. This is why successive African liberation movements and progressive states have fought against regionalism and tribalism because these reactionary ideas and efforts only serve to enhance imperialist influence and domination.
Kwame Nkrumah in his book entitled “Neo-Colonialism: The Last Stage of Imperialism” (1965) wrote that “The essence of neocolonialism is that the state which is subject to it, is in theory independent, and has all the outward trappings of international sovereignty. In reality, its economic system and thus its political policy is directed from outside.” This was the last book published by Nkrumah prior to his government being overthrown in Ghana in February of 1966 at the aegis of the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) utilizing local reactionary elements within the military and the police.
In the book “Some Essential Features of Nkrumaism” (1975) published by the editors of The Spark (Accra) and Panaf Books, it says that “Nkrumah gave a detailed analysis of the workings of international monopoly capitalism in Africa, and showed how meaningless political freedom could be without economic independence. It is ‘sham independence.’ Nkrumah considered neocolonialism to be more insidious, complex and dangerous than colonialism.” (Nkrumaism, p, 133)
In regard to Neocolonialism, Nkrumah says that “It not only prevents its victims from developing their economic potential for their own use, but it controls the political life of the country, and supports the indigenous bourgeoisie in perpetuating the oppression and exploitation of the masses. Under neocolonialism, the economic systems and political policies of independent territories are managed and manipulated from outside, by international monopoly finance capital in league with the indigenous bourgeoisie.” (Nkrumah, Revolutionary Path, (1973) p. 313)
“Some Essential Features of Nkrumaism” goes on to stress that “The foundations of the neocolonialist or client state are laid during the period of the national liberation struggle. Nkrumah points out that the colonial powers exploits differences between various sectors of the populations ‘to orientate the leaders of the liberation movements to a brand of nationalism based on petty-minded and aggressive chauvinism as well as to steer the liberation movement along a reformist path....Local agents, selected by the colonial power as ‘worthy representatives’ are then presented to the people as the champions of national independence, and are immediately given all the superficial attributes of power: a puppet government has been formed.” (Handbook of Revolutionary Warfare, (1969) pp. 9-10)
In Libya with the decline of the Ottoman Empire which ruled large sections of North Africa and the Middle East between the 16th century and World War I, the Italian colonialists saw an opportunity to take control of the country and turn it into another province of Rome. This was a vain attempt to give rebirth to the ancient Roman Empire whose armies invaded Libya 74 BC.
Yet the control of the Roman Empire over Libyan territories was tenuous at best. The rebellious peoples of the east, west and the south left the Byzantine rulers largely confined to the coastal regions of the area.
The Tripolitania state was representative of this fierce independence of the Libya people during the 18th and 19th centuries. The United States fought a series of military conflicts with Libya during the late 18th century through the early 19th century known as the Barbary Wars. These conflicts centered on the control of shipping lanes and the payment of fees for their utilization.
With the intervention of Italian colonialism during the so-called Italo-Turkish War of 1911-12, the three regions of Tripolitania, Cyrenaica and Fezzan were united under the control of Rome. From 1912 to 1927, the territory now known as Libya was called Italian North Africa. It was in 1934 that the name Libya was adopted by the Italian fascists under Mussolini, who in the following year would invade Ethiopia in another effort to enhance its imperialist rule over large and strategic sections of Africa.
The main population groups in Libya consisted of the indigenous Africans who inhabited areas along the coasts, in the south as well as east of the territory; the Berbers, who had long lived alongside Africans in North Africa; the Tuareg, who lived in the south of the country and maintained a fierce independence; and the Arabs who entered in great numbers during the period of the invasions of the 7th century. In 1917 there was a rebellion among the Tuareg against the French encroachment in the region which literally liquidated a platoon of French troops.
Ruth First described the onslaught of Italian colonialism in Libya by pointing out that “Italy, it was said, occupied Libya so as to breathe more freely in a Mediterranean stifling with the possessions and naval bases of France and Britain. The colonization lasted thirty-two years, from 1911 to 1943, and together with that of Algeria, where the occupation was far more prolonged and the struggle even more cataclysmic—and of Palestine where the occupation was anomalous but bitter—this was the most severe occupation experienced by an Arab country in modern times.” (First, p. 45)
The author continues saying “The object of the colonization was to incorporate Libya as Italy’s fourth shore: it was to be colonization by peasant settlement, and the advent to power of Mussolini’s Fascist order opened Libya to mass emigration financed and organized by the State. Nonetheless, during the initial invasion in 1911 the Italians were struck by the fierce resistance of the Libyan people.
First notes that “Italy had expected Libyans to welcome her as relief from the clutches of a dying Ottoman Empire; instead she faced combined Turkish-Libyan resistance. A year after the invasion there was military stalemate. The Italians forces were in command of the coastal enclaves and of the sea, but thousands of tribesmen were under arms.” (First, p. 46)
However, in 1912 Italy and Turkey reached a peace agreement and the Ottoman leaders withdrew from the resistance to the domination of Rome. A deal was reached which granted nominal independence to Tripolitania and Cyrenaica and at the same time recognized the right of the Italian colonialists to rule the territories.
This changed the entire composition and political nature of the war against the Italians. First points out that “Overnight the war changed its character. It ceased to be one in which a foreign power was trying to seize a colony from a tired empire; and became an anti-colonial war by an indigenous people, battling to retain their lands and their independent way of life.” (First, p. 46)
It was the Bedouin and other indigenous groups within Libya that played the critical role in the anti-colonial struggle. First reports that “In Cyrenaica and the Fezzan, despite heavy losses, the tribes had begun the guerrilla warfare so suited to their terrain and their traditions of turbulent independence. When parts of Cyrenaica were overrun, resistance flared in the Fezzan, led by the Sanusi forces supported by the Tuareg and Tebu from even the furthest corners of the desert. At one stage the Italians were forced to retreat into the southern Algeria for French protection. It was apparent that as long as the Bedouin were at large and un-subdued, there was bound to be resistance, and that the Sanusi Order was able to organize the united resistance that Tripolitania alone was unable to summon.” (p. 47)
King Idris, who would later be recognized by Italy as the leader of Libya when it gained independence in 1951, did not play a leading role in the anti-colonial war with Rome. Idris had signed numerous treaties with Italy and was able to build up wealth which was deposited outside the country in Cairo.
Ruth First notes that after 1923 the King went into exile and “Idris did not return to Cyrenaica until almost the end of the Second World War in 1943. Though many of the Shaikhs and Brothers of the Sanusi Order played a leading part in the prolonged resistance that followed, the Sanusi family as such ‘played an inconspicuous and inglorious part in the resistance.’ (p. 50)
Therefore, when the country was granted independence in 1951 its leadership was already severely compromised. Libya was controlled by a monarchy that was supported and propped-up by the British and the United States which maintained economic control as well as a military air base. Libya, until the Al-Fateh Revolution of September 1, 1969 that was led by the 27-year-old Col. Muammar Gaddafi, was one of the poorest countries in Africa and the Middle East.
During the anti-colonial struggle Omar Mukhtar would emerge as the face of the guerrilla war against Italy. In the region of Cyrenaica the population of the Bedouin was reduced by 65 percent. Many Libyans were forced into concentration camps as slave laborers in an effort to destroy their traditional way of life and their indomitable resistance to colonialism.
After the defeat of Italy during World War II in 1943, Libya was turned over for administration to the British and the French. The war transformed the industrial capacity of world capitalism where 75 percent of investment capital and over 65 percent of industrial capacity was controlled by the United States. U.S. troops were stationed on every continent in the world, including the construction of Wheelus Airfield in Libya, right outside of Tripoli.
The U.S. invested $100 million in building this base, its first military outposts on the African continent. With the escalation of the Cold War after 1947, the Wheelus Airfield became important to U.S. and British strategic interests in the Mediterranean.
According to Ruth First, “once the Cold War had begun to grow hot—the Korean War broke out in 1950—United States military planners resolved that the bases in Libya were not only useful but indispensable. Suitably handled, the granting of independence would make Libya safe for American and British bases and would keep the Soviet Union out of the Mediterranean. (It also, to Britain’s satisfaction, got France out of the Fezzan, after many decades of Anglo-French rivalry in Central Africa.) “(First, p. 67)
First says of the defeated colonial power that “Italy was mollified by being given the trusteeship of Somalia in return for the withdrawal of all claims over Libya….Thus it was recognized, admittedly late in the day, that far from independence being an obstacle, it could prove indispensable to the full utilization of Libya’s strategic position, as long as there was the certainty that Libya could be depended upon to join the strategic alliance of the Western powers.” (First, p. 67)
From Neo-Colonialism to Pan-Africanism
When oil was discovered in Libya in 1959, its value to imperialism became even more strategic. The country gross domestic product rose sharply during the 1960s although the wealth was not evenly distributed and very little was invested in the development of agriculture, industry and the elevation of the social wage of the population.
Widespread discontent with the system of neo-colonialism and western domination would lead to the Al-Fateh Revolution of September 1, 1969. Gaddafi and a small group of lower-ranking military officers would seize power and establish a Revolutionary Command Council.
Soon the Wheelus Airbase would be forced to leave Libya and the Al-Fateh Revolution proclaimed support for the struggle of the Palestinians and all Arab and African movements against imperialism. Gaddafi was inspired by the leader of the Egyptian Revolution of 1952, Gamel Abdel Nassar. Nassar would visit Libya soon after the removal of King Idris and form an alliance with the new revolutionary leadership in Tripoli.
Over the course of the next few years Libya would lead the way in the nationalization of oil in Africa and the Middle East. The wealth of the lucrative oil industry would be reinvested into the national economy where infrastructural improvement were made in the fields of health, construction, roads, housing and social welfare.
In 1977, Libya officially changed its name to the Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya. The country was governed by a network of General People’s Committees and Gaddafi said that he held no official position within the state apparatus.
This pattern of nationalization and the adoption of socialist methods of planning, production and wealth distribution were not unique to Libya. In Ghana during the era of Kwame Nkrumah, socialism and Pan-Africanism became state policy. Ghana became a haven for fighters from various national liberation struggles from throughout the African continent and the Diaspora.
On the continent in various states these revolutionary changes were proclaimed in Mozambique, Angola, Guinea-Bissau, Somalia, Ethiopia, Congo-Brazzaville, Tanzania, Benin, Guinea-Conakry, Algeria, Zambia, Zimbabwe, among others. These efforts to reclaim the natural resources and land for the indigenous people are essential for the genuine revolutionary transformation of the African continent.
However, these policies met serious challenges by the imperialist states. As Nkrumah points out “If leaders of the national liberation struggle are vigilant, and possess genuinely revolutionary qualities ‘then and only then, does a truly independent government emerge, dedicated to national reconstruction in the liberated territory, and determined to assist all those engaged in anti-imperialist struggle.’ In these circumstances, neocolonialists then resort to policies of encirclement and subversion in order to overthrow progressive governments using such weapons as ‘coup d’etats, assassination, mutiny within the party, tribal revolt, palace revolutions and so on, while at the same time strengthening neighboring puppet regimes to form a political safety belt, ‘cordon sanitaire’.” (Nkrumaism, p. 137)
This is the same strategy used by the U.S. and other imperialist states against Libya. The legacy of regionalism inherited from colonial rule is utilized to divide and foster rebellion in one section of the country. A false claim of returning the country to its monarchical roots which in actually stifled the genuine independence of the post-colonial state through foreign control of the national wealth and the presence of military installations and troops from imperialist countries.
The calling in of the former colonial and neo-colonial powers to assist the counter-revolutionaries in their purported fight against dictatorship and repression provides a political rationale for invasion. Then the utilization of the United Nations Security Council and other western-dominated world bodies such as the International Criminal Court (ICC) in efforts to cloak the imperialist designs on the country in pseudo-legalistic terms.
Other states within the regions are strong-armed and mislead into believing that the imperialists are beyond direct colonial seizure of African territories. Then of course there was the failure of the African Union, the Arab League, the Organization of Islamic Conference to adequately defend the targeted state from the military destruction by the western forces.
Then of course there are the mechanisms of control that will be put in place in Libya for the consolidation of neocolonialism. These instruments of control are varied but Nkrumah stressed nine of them and we see these efforts being implemented today in Libya.
“Nkrumah described the mechanisms of neocolonialism as follows: (1) Economic control in the form of ‘aid’, ‘loans’, trade and banking; (2)The stranglehold of indigenous economies through vast interlocking multinational corporations with their subsidiaries and affiliates.; (3)Political direction through puppet governments; (4) The cultivation of an indigenous bourgeoisie closely linked with the international bourgeoisie; (5) The imposition of ‘defense’ agreements, and the setting up of military, naval and air bases; (6) Ideological propaganda through the mass communications media of press, radio and television—the emphasis being on anti-communism; (7) The fomenting of discord between countries and tribes; (8) Collective imperialism, such as the politico/military cooperation of the racist minority regimes in central and southern Africa; (9) Activities of intelligence and espionage organizations and international agencies--the sending of ‘advisers’ and ‘experts’ (international bureaucrats), evangelists, Peace corps, etc.” (Nkrumaism, p. 139)
Nkrumah advocated the formation of an all-African Union Government under socialism as the only bulwark against neo-colonialism. Gaddafi, following this line of thinking, was also a strong proponent of Pan-Africanism. In 2009, when Gaddafi was chair of the African Union he spoke to this question at various international gatherings including his speech before the United Nations General Assembly in September of that year.
Yet despite the strength of neo-colonialism in the present period, it also represents imperialism in its final phase. The world capitalist system is facing terminal crises. Tens of millions of unemployed and homeless workers and farmers, coupled with unending wars of aggression will prove unsustainable. The very fact that a country the size of Libya with a population of six million has been able to hold out against the U.S. and NATO for eight months speaks volumes in regard to the waning influence of the West and its allies.
Nkrumah stressed that “The immense resources of Africa can only be fully utilized to raise the standard of living of the masses if our continent is totally liberated from all forms of oppression and exploitation, and if our economy is developed on a continental basis. The essential pre-requisite is socialist planning within the framework of political unification.” (Neo-Colonialism, p. 519)
This is a worldwide struggle against imperialism in all of its manifestations. Nkrumah points out that “The world struggle, and the cause of world tension, has to be seen not in the old political context of the cold war, that is, of nation states and power blocs, but in terms of revolutionary and counter-revolutionary peoples. It cuts right across territorial boundaries and has nothing to do with color or race. It is a war to the finish between the oppressed and the oppressors, between those who pursue a capitalist path, and those committed to socialist policies.” (Neo-Colonialism, p. 76)
Implications of the Libyan War for the Anti-Imperialist Movement in the U.S.
The escalating military aggression on the part of U.S. imperialism in Africa must become a major focal point of anti-war and anti-interventionist forces inside the capitalist states. There is no such thing as a humanitarian war under imperialist leadership since the ultimate aim of the ruling classes within the western countries is the total subjugation of the workers and farmers and the theft of their natural resources and labor.
This will be true in Libya as well. Consequently, it is the duty of the peace and anti-war organizations to transform their forces from being merely against interventions in certain regions of the world into becoming genuine anti-imperialists in their outlook and activities.
Any other course of action will lead to confusion and objectively aiding imperialism in its various manifestations. The brutal assassination of Muammar Gaddafi by a US-NATO lynch mob clearly illustrates the barbaric character of imperialism in its modern form.
Nonetheless, the Libyan people will continue their struggle against the imperialist occupation of the country. Developments in other African states throughout the continent will inevitably lead to the emergence of a unified revolutionary anti-imperialist and socialist front to battle the US Africa Command as well as the military forces of Britain, France, Italy, Canada and other Western states along with their allies on the continent and in the Middle East.
The anti-war movement inside the United States must be ideologically and politically prepared to meet these new challenges that are emerging as a result of imperialist aggression in its current phase of decline and desperation. No matter how many wars are launched and no matter how many resources are stolen from the peoples of the world, the capitalist system will remain the albatross of the workers and farmers throughout the planet.
In order to seek a new society and a new world, the capitalist system must be overthrown and socialism must be built on its shattered foundations. The wealth of the world must be redistributed to the masses of people who work for a living and who are deserving of support from those who are creators of value within society.