Atrocities Being Committed By Libyan Rebels Against Black Libyans
Rick Moran writes today about a story that hasn’t gotten much attention amidst the backslapping and glad-handing that’s been going on over the victory of the rebels in Libya, a victory that remains incomplete due to the fact that Muammar Gaddafi remains at large. It’s a story that isn’t getting much attention in the American press, but it deserves as much attention as the stories from back in March about supposed atrocities against civilians by the Libyan government that were used to justify the United Nations Security Council Resolutions that led to the US/NATO mission.
In a piece at FrontPage Magazine, Moran writes about the horrible treatment being received by black Libyans by the rebels due to their perceived support for the Gaddafi regime:
Chaotic conditions in post-Gaddafi Libya have led to a breakdown in security that threatens hundreds of thousands of sub-Saharan black African migrant workers. Reports from Tripoli indicate that the rebels who took control of the city last week have been rounding up people described as “mercenaries,” but who appear to be innocent residents caught up in a racial dragnet, with the soldiers and their neighborhood council adjuncts arresting and detaining almost all males with a black face.
There is no firm number of blacks being held in Tripoli, but one rebel commander said that about 5,000 prisoners were being detained in several locations around the city. Human rights groups believe the number is much higher and have raised the alarm about the conditions in which prisoners are being held, as well as concern over the safety of all blacks in Libya. The African Union has withheld recognition of the National Transitional Council, taking them to task for what they view as a racist detention policy. And the NTC has rejected a UN offer of peacekeeping troops to “monitor” the situation.
This isn’t the only report out there about disturbing behavior by the Libyan rebels in the wake of their victory. Al-Jazeera has reported in recent days about rebel forces hunting down refugees from the Taureg, a tribe of nomads, that live in the vast deserts of the Libyan south, and Amnesty International has called on the rebels to put a halt to the mass arrest of sub-Saharan blacks that have followed in the wake of the fall of the Gaddafi regime. Amnesty International also says that the rebels have tapped into “existing xenophobia” that apparently pervades Libyan society. There have been “racist overtones”, but the racism of some of the Libyan rebels has sometimes been explicit, and manifested itself in violence. A slogan used in Misrata while the fighting raged in that city gave homage to “the brigade for purging slaves, black skin”. There have been mass arrests and gruesome murder, all of which have been cataloged by human rights organizations. Right now, rebels are threatening to launch an indiscriminate assault on the city of Sirtre, a Gaddafi stronghold, using language that is strikingly similar to the words Gaddafi himself used when he was threatening an assault on the rebel stronghold of Behghazi in the weeks before the UN/NATO intervention.
The rebel leaders are claiming they are trying to control their troops and discourage retribution, but they are also blocking UN observers and being openly hostile toward international human rights organizations. As Moran notes, the prospect for something truly ugly happening in Libya seems fairly high and, if that happens, then the entire moral facade of the Administrations “Responsibility To Protect” doctrine, which served as the basis for the intervention in March, will be revealed for the fraud that it is, and the presumption that the mission in Libya was any kind of success will be revealed as a sad joke.