Participants in the national demonstration against all the wars from Central Asia to the Middle East and North Africa. (Photo: Abayomi Azikiwe), a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
WORKERS WORLD EDITORIAL
Speak up now – U.S./NATO out of Libya!
Published Aug 22, 2011 10:02 PM
The NATO powers of Europe and the U.S. are declaring victory after having pounded the small country of Libya for five brutal months.
They are claiming that the “rebel” forces they command, whose road to Tripoli was paved by NATO air strikes that knocked out much of Libya’s civil and military capability, now control the capital.
Britain, France, the U.S. and most of the other imperialist bandits have given diplomatic recognition to the grouping they themselves cobbled together. There should be no confusion about who these “democratic” forces are. They are the contras of Nicaragua, the Cuban mercenaries at the Bay of Pigs, and earlier the Manchukuo puppet regime set up by Japan to facilitate its imperialist invasion of China.
After the exposure of all the trickery and outright lying that U.S. governments used to mask their criminal aggression against Iraq and Afghanistan, there is no excuse for any progressive person to act confused and stand on the fence. The motives of Washington and Wall Street for this latest aggression are clear and unambiguous.
Just as in Iraq, there is a big economic motive on the part of the small group of politically powerful, transnational companies that control the world’s oil. Libya, with a population of only 6 million people, has the largest oil reserves in Africa.
The giant energy companies of Britain, France, Italy and the U.S. have for months been in a ruthless competition over who will get the biggest spoils from this undeclared war. While the front pages may talk about Libya in terms of freedom and democracy, the business sections of the same imperialist newspapers focus on the bottom line: oil profits.
Moreover, the U.S. ruling class sees breaking down Libya as an opening for further penetration into sub-Saharan Africa and implementation of its plans for military domination of the entire continent through Africom – the Pentagon’s new Africa command structure.
However, the Libyan people’s resistance has been heroic. For nearly half a year they have stood up to not only bombs but a blast of propaganda worthy of Hitler’s Joseph Goebbels.
Around the world, in every language, the corporate media have depicted the aggressors as angels of mercy, even as they systematically terrorized the people of Libya with nearly 7,500 air strike sorties that have deprived this desert nation of electricity, water, food and fuel. With its oil wealth, Libya has built a modern, largely urban environment.
As in Iraq, this raised the people’s quality of life but also left them more vulnerable to the damage that high-explosive bombs can do to a city’s power supply, water pipes and purification plants, roads and ports.
The media are now in a feeding frenzy over who can use the vilest, most racist terms to describe Col. Moammar Gadhafi, whom the West has never forgiven for having supported African freedom struggles and nationalized Libya’s oil. Having personalized the issue – “Gadhafi must go!” – the U.S. government and the servile media are trying to whip up a lynch mob mentality that is supposed to climax with the capture or assassination of Gadhafi – after which their cameras and reporters will go elsewhere while the people’s wealth is partitioned out among the imperialist bandits and their henchmen. That, at any rate, is the scenario.
As this is written, those defending Libya from the new colonialism of NATO are reportedly continuing to fight the “rebels” in Tripoli.
Despite all the air cover and the presence of British, French and undoubtedly U.S. special forces on the ground, taking over this city of 2 million people is not a cakewalk. The resistance to imperialism can take many forms, especially among a people who have been armed by the Libyan government.
Anyone who stands for the right of nations to self-determination, who understands the predatory character of the U.S. wars and occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan, who believes in people before profits and is for jobs and housing and education, not more billions for the Pentagon, should speak up now against this atrocity being committed in north Africa.
And we should remember that this dirty war is happening when desperate times have come to hundreds of millions of workers all over the world. A prolonged capitalist economic crisis eats away at their livelihoods and safety nets.
The imperialist countries whose ruling classes have fattened the most off the resources and labor of the oppressed nations of Africa, Asia and Latin America must now destroy jobs at home and slash social budgets to guarantee the profits of the billionaires.
Whatever happens in Libya over the next few days and weeks, one thing is clear: It is becoming more and more difficult for the imperialist powers, despite all their death-dealing weaponry, to keep the billions of workers and oppressed people around the world under their iron heel.
This is not the dawn of imperialism, when a few thousand soldiers armed with rifles and field guns could be sent overseas to drown a people’s resistance in blood while finance capital spun its web around the local elites.
This is the age of rotting, moribund imperialism when the profit system is undercutting its own markets, pauperizing workers everywhere in a chase for ever greater profits while production stagnates. It is the age of high-tech war and high-tech production, both of which require enormous capital outlays at the expense of the shrinking class of producers.
In the imperialist countries, all of which are now home to workers of many nationalities, it is an age of awakening internationalism, class solidarity and resistance to the hardships that imperialist war brings to those at home as well as abroad.
U.S. and NATO out of Libya! The struggle to end imperialism and wage slavery continues.
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