As the NATO attack on Libya continues, more and more civilians are being killed by US, French and British bombings. These attacks are not just aimed at military targets, but at civilian targets as well.
What the US has said publicly was that civilians need to “distance themselves from Gaddafi regime forces and equipment”. This phrase is very telling; it is basically telling the people of Libya that they must leave all government buildings and refuse all government services including essential services. On the 22nd a NATO bombing killed 9 state water utility employees in Sirte.
On the 20th seven civilians were killed and 18 wounded in a southwestern Tripoli suburb by NATO air strikes. Four more people were killed in a town near the Libyan capital.
The message from the NATO powers is clear: do not use any government services or you will be punished as though you were Muammar Gaddafi himself. This reveals a very anti-Libyan people position, the population is being attacked for the interests of the NATO forces, proving this war and eventual occupation is not to liberate the Libyan people.
This reality is being covered up by “politically acceptable” press releases. US Defence Secretary Robert Gates stated publicly on the 21st that the drone attacks had been order by President Obama because of their ability to strike precisely. However, anyone who has even passing knowledge of warfare knows that such a statement is completely false. These “precise” attacks by drones (along with smart bombs) are anything but useful in reducing civilian causalities.
It is almost insulting the public telling us care for civilians is going into these attacks.
Not only is this war against the Libyan population, it is also against the US population as well. According to a New York Times/CBS News poll, 45 percent of the US population is against the war, while only 39 percent support it. It is clear that the majority of Americans do not want the killing of Libyans to continue. It is an insult to facade of US democracy that these attacks continue against the will of the people.
Despite the surface of appearance, the imperialist powers are still fighting over their respective interests when it comes to the oil resources of Libya. It is precisely the reason why no comprehensive plan for, or use of foot soldiers has taken place thus far. All sides are currently trying to work out how much of the oil producing areas they can get their hands on.
The most determined to take advantage of the situation is France who has fought quite hard to play a leading role in military operations. The French Foreign Ministry is planning ground forces soon in order to “deliver humanitarian aid” to Misrata. However the UK Ministry of Defence has already said that the European Union would not launch ground forces in Misurata.
Regardless of what the UK Ministry of Defence says, ground forces will be absolutely necessary. The weeks of bombing have severely impacted Libyan military forces, but has not knocked the Gaddafi regime out of power. This is due to the lack of support for the US attacks in Libya.
Already it is assumed (not publicly in the media) that thousands of Libyan soldiers have died. US sources have already claimed that 30 to 40 percent of the Libyan military has been eliminated. However despite such losses, US officials are admitting that the situation is become a stalemate.
Such a stalemate on the horizon will no doubt require the more intense bloodletting that John McCain has been advocating while in Libya. This war by the nature of imperialist conquest will only lead to more and more suffering by the Libyan people at the hands of the capitalist profit motive.