The first shipment of Libyan oil arrived to the US on July 8th, following a deal signed by the US and the Transitional National Council, the self-proclaimed legitimate government of Libya. The sale finally reveals the true reasons behind the NATO campaign, previously described as an attempt to provide security for Libyan civilians. The said civilians keep suffering, NATO forces keep trying to break the stalemate and America seems to be the only side of the conflict benefitting from the so-called “rescue operation”. Meanwhile representatives of Arab and Western countries are meeting in the United Arab Emirates to discuss Libya’s future after the presumed end of Muammar Gaddafi. However Gaddafi doesn’t seem to be in a hurry to give up, which was clearly demonstrated by the lack of results of NATO bombardments of Tripoli.
A plan “to take all necessary measures to protect civilians and civilian populated areas”, declared by the UN Security council resolution is failing miserably. However, while Libyan civilians suffer from the actions of both the rebels and government troops, Libyan oil is getting safely transported to America. As the US State Department confirmed on Wednesday, the rebel government in control of the eastern regions of Libya had made its first sale. The deal followed an April announcement by the Office of Foreign Assets Control at the Treasury Department that established a new licensing policy with Libya. The US had to take this measure to facilitate oil-related transactions with the Transitional National Council.
According to a written statement from the State Department, Tesoro, a U.S. oil refiner, signed a deal with the Transitional National Council based in Benghazi, Libya for 1.2 million barrels of Libyan crude oil. The dollar value of the deal is still unknown.
The statement claims that the true reason behind the deal with TNC is an intention to support the Libyan people. However, one must be extremely naïve to believe that any Libyan person caught in the chaotic cross-fire would get a single cent out of this deal.
As the US is successfully solving its oil problem, Western and Arab leaders are preparing to decide the future of Libya. The members of the so called Contact Group – a coalition of various countries and international organizations that have officially recognized the TNC as the legitimate government of Libya – are to meet in the United Arab Emirates. It is the third meeting of the group tasked with discussing the potential development of the country after the end of the Gaddafi regime.
It’s a surprising fact that despite beginning of oil trade with the TNC, the United States has not recognized the new government of Libya. “We are still considering it but there’s no final decision as of right now,” said a US official, commenting on the possible recognition of the TNC.
While the members of the Contact Group are deciding the future of post-Gaddafi Libya, Gaddafi himself expresses no intention to give up his power. “We will not surrender, we will not give up,” the beleaguered leader declared in response to the intensified bombardment of Tripoli by NATO air forces. NATO has to face the fact that all of its strategies to end the conflict remain nothing but empty words, while the country sinks deeper into chaos.
The latest report of the UN Human Rights Council states that war crimes in the troubled country continue and that means the citizens of Libya keep paying a bloody price for European ambitions and American oil.
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