With increasing reports that the Libyan rebel forces include extreme Islamic elements and ties with Al Qaeda, a new press report is not going to help matters in the creation of the first new government vis-a-vis the United States. Rebels say that they have discovered documents in intelligence files that show that the U.S. and Britain helped capture and turn over dissidents to the regime. The papers also reportedly show that the CIA used the regime in rendition cases where suspects were handed over to be tortured.
The rebels say that they found hundreds of letters between the CIA and MI6 and the former intelligence chief for Gaddafi — some beginning affectionately with “Dear Moussa.”
Among the people tortured was Abdel Hakim Belhadj, who said he was captured and first tortured by the CIA and then turned over to the Libyan for torture. He is now the military commander of Tripoli in the new government.
38 thoughts on “Libyan Rebels Claim To Find Evidence That CIA Helped Capture Libyan Dissidents and Used Regime For Renditions and Torture”
“With increasing reports that the Libyan rebel forces include extreme Islamic elements and ties with Al Qaeda…”
Wait – what reports? Made up stuff in the Washington Times? “Fox Nation”? “Redstate dot com”?
I’m not just being snarky – please cite these “increasing reports” because I seriously can’t find them. It’s a “well known fact” in the right-wing bizarro-world that the Libyan revolutionaries are rife with active al Qaeda, and that thanks to Obama supporting the unruly towelheads, wily al Qaeda has armed itself from Qaddafi’s stockpiles and that horrible Kenyan Musli-Communist Obama has put US troops there to fight shoulder-to-shoulder alongside al Qaeda! But out here in the reality-based community, the character and extent of any al Qaeda role in the current events in Libya is believed to be fairly minimal.
The fact that a few people fighting in Libya had been “foreign fighters” in Iraq and Afghanistan? If you wanted to fight the infidels, al Qaeda would give you “training”, a ticket to Iraq or Afghanistan and a gun. Some of these fighters are true believers, some aren’t. Just because someone called himself a Communist and fought in the Lincoln Brigades in Spain didn’t mean that he would come back to the US and work to violently overthrow the US government in favor of Soviet rule.
There are ex-pat Libyans in the al Qaeda hierarchy, but I can’t find any evidence that they have meaningful connections or links to people in Libya today, let alone to the Transitional National Council. Also, there was an Islamist anti-Qaddafi insurgency, but again, it isn’t clear that they were “part of” or even “closely aligned with” al Qaeda. The certainly shared outlook and had common enemies, but it’s a stretch to say that “al Qaeda was trying to overthrow Qaddafi from inside Libya” over the last few years.
Starting around March 24th, 2011 through April 5th, 2011 there was an echo chamber of articles published about supposed al Qaeda involvement in the popular Libyan revolution against the Qaddafis. These, in turn triggered a response from regional experts pointing out that beyond the overthrow of Qaddafi, the aims of al Qaeda and the aims of the overwhelming majority of Libyan revolutionaries are radically, fundamentally at odds with each other. The verbal support that al Qaeda gave to the popular uprisings in the region just made al Qaeda look all the more pathetic as they desperately tried to piggyback on these unrelated causes.
Earlier in February 2011 there were reports that about 100 people held in Libyan prisons who had been accused of links to al Qaeda had “escaped.” As we know from Qaddafi family comments that tried to disparage and discredit the national revolution by claiming that it was led by al Qaeda (“they’re putting LSD in the Nescafe!”) Similarly, the Egyptian regime had tried releasing criminals and militants from prisons (in dubious “escapes”) in order to discredit, distract and disrupt the popular uprising.
In February, middle-east expert Juan Cole wrote this:
but by March, he was sick of beating his head against the wall explaining how wildly different the Libyan revolutionaries were from al Qaeda, so he stopped wasting his time debunking al Qaeda claims. (There IS al Qaeda in Saudi Arabia and Yemen. There’s al Shabbab, who are nominally al Qaeda affiliated in Sudan. There are Islamist militants in Egypt, but most aren’t al Qaeda affiliates. Even the AQIM, who changed their name a couple of years ago to add”al Qaeda” and who are 100 to 400 kidnappers running around eastern Mauritania, northern Mali, southern Algeria and western Niger seem to have closer links to the Algerian secret intelligence organization than to al Qaeda itself.)
The reality is that the popular uprisings in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya are very, very bad for al Qaeda. The origins of that group and similar ones were rooted in helplessness and frustration among many millions of people in the region. They felt helpless to make any difference at home, and so re-directed their frustration at “the West” and Israel. Al Qaeda was seen as the only group “striking back” at the outside forces who propped up their domestic dictators. Now that the 100 million people in those three countries potentially have some say in their government and lives, they don’t need to turn to al Qaeda to look for some satisfaction or hope.
Al Qaeda pathetically, desperately wishes that they were playing any sort of role in the revolution, but the reality is that we’re hearing yet another death knell ring towards the end of that particular group.
not surprising, after all our friends become our enemies who then become our friends and so on.
Question what is worse:
Helping Capture Libyan Dissidents and Using Regime For Renditions and Torture
Killing who knows how many Libyans loyal to Gaddafi?
Neither one is better than the other. neither one is justifiable. We really had no business interfering in a purely interior matter not that hasn’t stopped the US before.
I have little doubt this is true. Gaddafi went from US’s public enemy number one with his 1986 proclamation of a “line of death” in the Gulf of Sidra and the subsequent enagagements therein to passive lap dog. There is usually a payoff for these types of turnarounds and this seems no different.
Roco, only if we are willing to rethink our positions on wanting to live in a clean place that does not kill our children slowly. Nice try at putting the blame for our greed on the environmentalists that are trying to save us from the disasters our corporate overlords want to visit upon us.
Don’t know if you read this but the US has been EXPORTING refined gas & petroleum recently because the demand is down here. Thats right, after all the whining about EPA not allowing new refineries (even though we have had a surplus capacity for years) and whining about not permitting the rape & pillage of every nook and cranny of America we have a SURPLUS of gasoline. Yet gas prices just went up. Gawd bless the oil companies.
or we could realize that no countries petroleum is going to last much longer and begin transitioning to more reusable energy sources. maybe even save some petroleum for all the other things we’ve become accustom to having, like plastic or fertilizer.
also you don’t drill for coal or bitumen sands. you dig really large holes that never quite seem to get refilled.
we have huge reserves of oil, coal, natural gas and tar sands. Seems to me we would be better off drilling here. Probably less costly too.
So to say this is just about oil is a bit of a stretch. We should have left the Col. alone and let things happen as they would.
By Hedges reasoning, the environmental lobby is responsible for all wars we have fought in the last 20 years. Maybe it is time to rethink our policy on domestic petroleum production?
Here is a post by Chris Hedges about the realities in Lybia, as he sees them. He doesn’t speculate about whether some elements in the Lybian coalition are muslim or not; it is focused on the jackbooted advance of western corporate interests.
It looks accurate to me.
i think this proves the CIA had nothing to do with JFK’s assassination.
if they did it we’d all be speaking vietnamese
Good idea Gene.
Make them sweat a bit!
As I said even cargo space has its price…sometimes not too much oxygen…or lights…
I’m for letting them ride on the plane. In the plane is too good for war criminals.
the cargo hold sounds like the correct place for them!!
Even cargo has its price…
The CIA is and was out of control and the torture crowd needs to pay for their illegal and immoral actions. I will also chip in some cash for Bush and Cheney’s ticket to the Hague. Of course, I won’t pay for first class for those felons.
Both sides can behave badly. The thrust of the post is that they have.
They always start letters to oil lackeys with “Dear” but should they seek to nationalize the oil for the primary benefit of the people, who own the oil, then the letter is “hey dead man walking“, seen ya soon.
I don’t understand the thrust of Turley’s post.
He says two things, it seems to me.
1) that the USA suspects that there are some “bad guys” among the rebels, (Boooo at the rebels?)
2) the rebels report finding documents that show that the USA colluded with Ghadafi to torture suspected bad guys. (Boooo at the CIA?)
One of the tortured guys now is police chief in Tripoli. (huh? is this good or bad?)
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