Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Libyan Interests

'Gaddafi threatened to replace western oil firms with companies from India and China in a March 2 speech and more than 10 days later discussed possible investments with the ambassadors of the two countries and Russia, state-run television reported.'   Bloomberg notes that as well as Rome-based Eni, foreign oil producers in Libya include France’s Total SA, Austria’s OMV AG  and Spain’s Repsoi YPF SA.    The U.K.’s largest oil companies Royal Dutch Shell  and BP  were exploring for oil and gas before suspending operations when the anti-government uprising started in the east of the country in mid-February. '  (Bloomberg)

Well he won't be acting on the outcome of any of those discussions now, will he?

Meanwhile the hyped-up 'row' about who commands the Allied intervention to protect civilians from the Regime's military is dressed in  Nato/not Nato clothes but is really about the administration of  post-'No-Fly' Libya.  Clearly humanitarian assistance is badly needed to restore electricity and water supplies, restock the hospitals,  rebuild damaged settlements and continue to hold off resurgent aggression at petty levels by Gadaffisti while the Transitional National Government establishes itself, and elections at national and local levels are held.

Humanitarian assistance comes armed and usually from military structures. Of necessity, warfare consisting in destroying humans and human support infrastructures, humanitarian assistance has to be equal to coping with it.  And Gadaffi promises to wage war on his people (and on the rest of us) for as long as he can.  Italy, from where what humanitarian assistance that has been  supplied has come, not unnaturally sees itself as a main provider, and recipient of the profits from all that provision of infrastructure and goods.  But now that the regime's international and local aggression and defence capabilities have been taken out (apart from terrorist attacks on their own and other state's civilians) the rest of the Alliance would like to offer humanitarian assistance as well, and for the same reasons as Italy.

In the meantime we can rely on the United States continuing to run the show until the humanitarian assistance allocations are sorted out.  After all, the No-Fly zone has now been extended enormously to the south and west; who knows what might be lurking, out there in the desert, that  demands further aerial intervention.


Sackerson said...

Your first para lends weight to the suspicion that the West started this shebang.

hatfield girl said...

Diverting oil from Italy to China (or India) isn't going to win my support either, S. It's not acceptable for a Libyan terrorist dictator to interfere with our oil security any more than with our personal safety as we go about our lives and worlds.

Odin's Raven said...

Here's a nice article about the centenary of the first aerial bombing mission - by an Italian, over Libya!


"The world’s first aerial bombing mission took place 100 years ago, over Libya. It was an attack on Turkish positions in Tripoli. On 1 November 1911, Lieutenant Cavotti of the Italian Air Fleet dropped four two-kilogramme bombs, by hand, over the side of his aeroplane. In the days that followed, several more attacks took place on nearby Arab bases. Some of them, inaugurating a pattern all too familiar in the century since then, fell on a field hospital, at Ain Zara, provoking heated argument in the international press about the ethics of dropping bombs from the air, and what is now known as 'collateral damage’. (In those days it was called 'frightfulness’.) The Italians, however, were much cheered by the 'wonderful moral effect’ of bombing, its capacity to demoralise and panic those on the receiving end."

Odin's Raven said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
hatfield girl said...

Italians have done all kinds of things in Libya since Roman times, as you know Raven, and are famous for nasty behaviour as well as quite useful development efforts there.

You might like to take down the other comment - it quotes views that are unacceptable as well as silly.

hatfield girl said...

I took it down, Raven, it was horrible.