Libya: the land of gangs and ‘money spigot’ governments
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Mohammed Ali al-Mabrouk: The Land of Gangs and “Money Spigot” Governments
Source: Libya Al-Mostakbal
What makes Libya stand out among all the countries of the world is that it is a land of gangs that are officially appointed, licensed, legitimized, or sponsored. These gangs are in control but no authority accompanies their power. In Libya, there is no legislative or executive authority; there are only gangs that are loyal to their own gang, not to the nation. Their interests are personal interests and not national interests. These gangs include:
- The February Revolution gangs. These are armed gangs that mouth the slogans of the February Revolution. They are only nominally affiliated with official bodies, but have no real loyalty except to the head or chief of the gang, or the region that they belong to. Libya has seen nothing but the worst from them, for example: waging war against Libya’s regions; displacement of their residents; imprisonment and torture of Libyans; closing roads on Libyans and confining them in their regions, closing ports and oils fields (as happened with the gang guarding oil facilities in central Libya); closing public service departments or attacking hospitals, airports and schools; fighting amongst one another in cities without regard for civilians; blackmailing and stealing public funds; and compelling governments to appoint ambassadors, directors, or ministers, such as happened recently in eastern Libya.
- Gangs affiliated with deviant, extremist ideologies, known as “Salafi,” such as Ansar al-Sharia and ISIS. These are legitimized armed gangs that only belong to deviant ideologies. They emerged during the February Revolution like seeds scattered in the turmoil of a storm until they were set down and mingled organically, and grew up into trees bearing poison fruit, hideous to look at, that only crows would use as a nesting place. They have done nothing but accuse Libya’s own Muslim people of unbelief, seize mosques, spread their books and publications, impose their imams and preachers in these mosques, bring in foreigners, carry out assassinations and bombings, compel people to follow their beliefs, destroy symbolic, touristic, and historical landmarks, and seize entire regions – as happened when the Un-Islamic State took over Sirte. These gangs do nothing but kill in horrific scenes that are more evil than evil itself. Even still, these gangs receive support from and are allied with certain February 17 gangs.
- Criminal gangs. With the February 17 Revolution that blew in and shook the Libyan soil and then brought out latent evils and churned chemical and organic elements, thus making Libya’s soil fertile ground for the growth of various forms of criminal armed gangs, including gangs involved in kidnapping, narcotics, theft, highway robbery, illegal migration, fuel and antiquities smuggling, etc. Some of these gangs are allied with or enjoy the protection of certain February 17 gangs. They control ports such as Zuwara and others in western Libya, which they use for migration, fuel smuggling, and transporting members of ISIS from North Africa to Sirte. They control land borders in south, west and east Libya. In the sight of Libyans, some of these gangs have taken over archeological, mineral, and environmental sites in east, west and south Libya in order to plunder antiquities and mineral resources, and hunt and smuggle animals abroad with the help of international gangs.
Meanwhile, the political bodies that ostensibly hold national responsibilities have no existence inside Libya itself, but are dependent on the vicissitudes of these gangs. The General National Congress in western Libya is a money-spigot congress and its so-called national salvation government is a money-spigot government. At the same time, the House of Representatives in eastern Libya is a money-spigot parliament and the al-Thani government is a money-spigot government. They are money spigots that have no other profession than disbursing money to themselves and these gangs that are greedy to the point of vulgarity, as if the money were an inheritance or gift and as if there were no such thing as public money, only private money. These gangs are like bacteria that have infiltrated the cells of the Libyan body, and they are enabled by the existence of these money-spigot governments that have destroyed the antibodies of the immune system to the point of bankruptcy. As a result, the Libyan people is now living in a diseased body afflicted with misery and poverty. Fear and terror dominate the news and its destiny is driven by nothing but tragedies. However, a glimmer of hope remains if we can unleash our currently dormant will to move forward. This will be achieved once the Libyan people rises up against the money-spigot rulers and armed gangs and dissolves them, and then rallies around three basic pillars to enable Libya to recover. The first pillar involves the security aspect, embodied in the form of Tripoli’s deterrent force, which deserves to be the nucleus of a strong security body in Libya, since it has proven its patriotism in fighting crime. The second pillar is the military, which exists in the form of Libyan army units in eastern Libya and certain inactive units in western and southern Libya, which are only loyal to Libya and nothing else. These units deserve to be the nucleus of a strong regular military. Then the third pillar is the political aspect, which exists in the form of the national unity government proposed by the UN, which presupposes that the money-spigot GNC in western Libya and the money-spigot House of Representatives in eastern Libya will removed by the Libyan people rising up against them. These pillars will enable Libya to emerge from the danger and then afterward take things one at a time.