BSNews interviews Don DeBar
Don DeBar is an independent journalist who has recently travelled to Libya before and during the NATO invasion. BSNews emailed him some questions regarding the conflict.
1/ We know that the intervention in Libya was not humanitarian – some suggest oil others, including Ellen Brown (http://webofdebt.wordpress.com/2011/04/16/libya-all-about-oil-or-all-about-banking ), have suggested it was more to do with money and central banking. Do you have a theory on the real reasons for the invasion?
There is first and foremost the geopolitical consideration – that the US and EU are determined to take direct control of Africa’s resources. Libya was – and, thus far, remains – the single largest impediment to this effort, with Gadhaffi personally being the single human being who is the largest obstacle.
Begin with the fact that one of Gadhaffi’s first acts after deposing the western puppet King Idris was to evict the US from its only military base on the continent. This act, taken four decades ago, left the US in the position of having to base its AFRICOM force, established in October, 2008, in Stuttgart, Germany, laying bare the nature of this “alliance.”
More immediately, in terms of geopolitical irritations, Libya has heavily invested in African infrastructure, such as telecom system construction, an African satellite, and other communications projects. The revenue which now stays in Africa – hundreds of millions of dollars a month – comes directly out of the pockets of US, EU and other global telecom companies, a trend that is in exactly the opposite direction sought by US/EU power elites.
Even more to the point is that Gadhaffi has been pushing for – and funding the enabling of – an independent and united African economic entity that could rival the EU and other global economic powers. Among the tasks underway at the time of the invasion was the creation of an African sovereign bank and an African currency printed in Africa under African control. This would wrest control over African resources from the French and others whose power to print African currency translates into economic and, ultimately, political control.
One more extremely important point: Libya since 1969 has offered an economic and political model to Africans and others suffering colonial control that stands in stark contrast to the models of such as Nigeria and South Africa. The country’s natural wealth has been directly applied to the economic needs of the population, with the result that every Libyan owns their home – without mortgage encumbrance or rent or property tax burdens; a first-rate health care system was built and operated that is free and available to all; a first-rate education system was built and operated through the post-graduate level that is free and available to all; the oil revenues are distributed to the people in the form of a monthly stipend in the thousands of dollars; and public infrastructure – such as roads, water systems, electricity, etc., were constructed and operated efficiently and made available to all.
So the threat is a.) a plan to democratize control of Africa’s wealth and b.) a successful example of doing this in Libya, demonstrating that it is possible and offering a “how-to” model to the people of the continent. A serious threat to colonial ambition that is perhaps unmatched in the world at present.
2/ On March 19th the rebels met to discuss the setting up of a new central bank. Have you ever known an uprising, especially one as unpopular as this, setting up a central bank before power had even been taken?
No. And nor have I seen the wholesale appropriation of a nation’s sovereign wealth, with a portion of it used to fund such an enterprise.
3/ We’re seeing reports that Doha, Qatar was used to build film sets of Tripoli (replicas of Green Square, Bab al-Azizya compound and several streets) so that news feeds could show the rebels entering the capital. Have you heard this and can you confirm?
I have heard this. Although I cannot confirm from direct evidence, it is such a widely held belief that even CNN is now saying we cannot believe the pronouncements from or about the rebels on such matters. Meanwhile, every person I have spoken to who has visited either Green Square or Bab al-Azizya and saw these feeds has said the same thing – close, but no cigar: the videos are faked.
4/ From what we’ve been reading, Libya has a much better welfare state than most western nations. Can you confirm my research into this?
* Free health care – if an operation is not available within the country, the patient is flown abroad for treatment and Libyan govt picks up the entire bill. True. And also funds travel and board for the patient’s family.
* Free education – Libyan students choosing to study abroad get their university fees and and living expense paid for (not a student loan) – True. All that is required is that the student is accepted for admission by the university.
* Income tax = 15% (apart from farm labourers and agricultural workers who pay no income tax) Correct.
* VAT = 0% Correct.
* Fuel, food and even car purchases are all subsidised. AND Promoted.
* Most people own their own home free of mortgage – ALL people own their homes free of mortgages, rent or taxes.
* All infrastructure projects are funded using the Libyan Sovereign Wealth Fund – some foreign investment – WITHOUT EQUITY – was allowed for a part of the past decade.
* Most importantly, Libya has no national debt (apart from annual current account) and so is not indebted to the IMF / World Bank and BIS – Correct. Although these have stolen billion of Libyan assets in the past months.
* Gaddafi was planning to introduce a new currency – the gold dinar – which would be used to free the continent from colonial / imperial enslavement. The plan was for all African oil producing countries to sell oil and possibly other resources in this new currency. Obviously this would be a huge threat not only to the petro dollar hegemony but to the euro as well. Correct. See detail above.
5/ We’re seeing reports that Erick Prince (Blackwater / Xe) setup a mercenary army known as Reflex Responses (R2) – do you know if these are being used to help the rebels and if so, when did they engage?
Unknown. My reports are that the main invasion forces were Qatari regulars dressed as irregulars, except for their commanders, who were in national uniform. I also was told there are many dead Qataris in Tripoli.
Click here to for the full interview
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Thats some interpretive post