Monday, June 09, 2014

354 Alan Kuperman proves: Ghadaffi did nothing wrong.

This blog:

There is an Update below.

Interesting lecture by an American prof. whose interest is in effectiveness of Human Intervention. 
He studied the Libian revolt against  Ghadaffi with another goal than the usual scholars.  His information on what happened during the war is like 'colateral information'. He had no motive to lie. 
He is an interesting source. 

Prof. Kuperman:  LBJ School of Public Affairs,  Univ. Of Texas att Austin.
Kuperman spoke at the Internat. Inst. for Social Studies in The Hague, Netherlands, on 29 may 2012.

Dr. Alan Kuperman studied the Humanitarian Intervention ( HI) in  Libya very meticulously.

Het is not at all a fan of Ghadaffi.  ( He says at the end of the session that  Ghadaffi  ( G.) financed a lot of rebellions in Africa, like the one of Kagame in Rwanda)

His central question is :  is HI  effective, does it help the people, or does it  make, to tthe contrary, make humans  suffering bigger?

Kuperman starts with the common wisdom: that what we all think.
( As written in Foreign Policy in 2012 by ... They consider this a 'model' intervention. )

1. There was a peaceful uprising
2. Ghadaffi bombed peacefull civilians.
3. As a reaction, te revolt became violent.
4. G. starts to attack coivilians, also by air.
5. G. threatens to crate a bloodbath in Benghazi.
6. US and Nato intervene to prevent the bloodbath.
7. The nation-wide support ( from the Libian people)  for the rebels enabled their victory.
8. Conclusion: Nato prevented a Rwanda-like genocide and promoted freedom and democracy.

Kuperman  then says: all of these points are untrue.

Did Ghadaffi target peaceful civilians?

1.    The protets were violent from the First day.
2.    G. used restraint in the beginning. Only after demonstraters started to shoot, Gh also did use arms.
3.    The soldiers did shoot to wound, not to kill:” shot in the legs.

Initial dead toll was not thousands, as reporter in MSM, but about 250.

G. was targetting not everybody, but rebeld.
HRW: of all the wounded in Misrata, only 3 % were women.

After 2 months of war, only 257 people were killed.  So G. did not try to kill people.
He was despeartely trying to avoid killing civillians.

In how many cities did G,.. commit a bloodbath?  In none.
Why would he create one in Benghazi?
He explained it too. He said:
1.    I will not target civilians.
2.    I will not target rebels who saurrender.
3.    I will give free way out to flee the country for the rebels.

G. forces did not initiate the violence.  It was the rebeld. That is for the ffirst 3 dayys.
Later G. did initiate vioplence in o0ther places.

2. Was Nato’s interventiuon to protect civilians ?

Maybe in the begining it was motivated by that, at the beginning…
But: once Nato decided to use force,  the object became: Regime Change.
1.    Nato attacked retreating forces.
2.    They targeted places like Sirte, where the civilians all supported G.  They were not threatened by the G. forces.
3.    The USA and Nato provided intelligence to the rebels.
4.    Nato trained rebels. The rebels got weapons from other countries. They fueled a civil war. That is contraruy to protect civilians.
5.    Nato did not accept seaae fire, which was offered. Extra civilians died from that reason.

The war.
This was a regional armed uprising against G. Not a national uprising.

Uprising  in Misrata, and in the west: all rivals of G.
G. forces were surprised.   Unprepared. Rebels quickly won terrain.
In 2 weeks time much of the country was won.
Op 5 march: all the cities in east: controlled by rebels . This wa s the high point of the rebels.
On 15 march the rebels had lost all but Benghazi.
Then G. says: it will  be over in 48 hours.
That could very well be happening. Normally.
But: on march 17:  UNSC resolutie 1973.
March 19: Nato starts bombing. 
March 20:( Not in the Kuperman lecture, it just became known in april 2014)
                   Ghafdaffi offers to abdicate and leave the country. 
                  Washington refuses ! ( See Update, below). 

France bombs the cities and G. 's army. 

Then the rebels start winning again.

Op 2 august G. tries a last offensive.
This fails.

Tripoli falls.
In october the rebels find G. and kill him.

 Was this a humanitarian intervention ? (H.I.)

What would have happened if there were no H.I. ?
Kuperman ( Ku)
I th9ink G. was right: the rebels would have lost on march 22, 2011.
( without HI intervention)
How many people would have died in total, without H.I. ?
I calculated:  1000 people.
Calculated guess:  Benghazi: 500 , Misrata 200. Tripoli 200, Zawariya 170 Central Libya 10 ?

We did not get a 5 week war. We got a 30 weeks war.

Not 1000 deads.  But 8000 deads  ( US estimate nov. 2011)
30.000 ( Libya estimate, sept. 2011) ( 15000 G. forces and 15000 rebels + civilians.)

The moral hazard of Humanitary Intervention.

It backfires by stimulating rebels. It pays fort hem to starta war with civilian deads, so that intervention will come and help them.
Prospective or actual intervention will  stir and even  escalate rebellion.  

Jalil : 11 days after the begiining: he asked the UK for a No Fly zone.
Nato armed, trained the rebeld. And bombed the ennemy of the rebels.

Post War Libya.

First: reprisal killings on G. forces.  On mercenaries ( black africans were killed.

Ethnic cleansing in Tawergha. ( The black people were all killed.)
The country is now controlled by many miliotias . Even in towns different controlling groups.
Oil rich eastern part wants secession.
HRW says that former rebels commit crimes against humanity.
42% of Libyans want a new strong man like G.

Regional spillover.

Mali: weapons from Libya. ->  Tuareg rebellion.  
Syria: Nato intewrvention for Libyan rebels.
In Syria the protests were really peaceful in the beginning.  Tehen it became violent.  Were they stimulated by Libians example?
Somalia.   Weapons from Libya. Al Shabab
Proliferation: surface to air missiles ( Manpad’s ) still missing.  You can easily take down a civilian airliner.

Net Humanitarian Impact?
War perpetuated : 7x longer.
Deadth toll magnified: 8 times x to 30 times.
Human rights situation unimproved.
Economy and governance damaged
Mali civil war
Syria : rebels encouraged. More deads.
Future benefits to compensate this costs?  

Lessons 1.
Beware of misinformation and disinformation.
Regional rfebellion is not a democratic uprising.
Urban counter insurgency : targeting civilians.

The west should only intervene on H. grounds if the government reaction is grossly disproportionate.

Lesson 2.
Often it results in Regime Change.
Ku thinks that this is because west wants to prevent cognitive dissonance: how can we work with such a criminal: lets get him out.
( I know:  the HI was done  only to get the leader out , NOT to help the civilians.  Ku is naïve !! )
So there is a question: Ca none support H.I.  if one opposes the forcible overthrow of r3egimes thata are not deliberately targetting civilians?

-------------------------------- END of lecture-------------------------------

Questions from students:

Does the West have good intentions? Or was i the agenda to bring the countreis into chaos?
42 % like a kind of strongman back. And the other 48 % ?

Man:1  ??

Man 2:  How come that the Media  tel lus all this wrong information ?

Kuperman’s answers:

He believes that the intentions of the governments invoilved were  really Humanitarian.
Quiet results in Oxford in sfebr 2012, Ku had to g there and get the rsults.  They were not published.

Must R2P  be discarded?
No , do not stop it.
We can implement it in better ways.
5 recommendations: Rethinking the R2P.
The International community should only intervenen when the gov. Uses disproportional force.
Encourage peaceful solutions.

Media reporting.   ( The limits of H.I. )
I argued there: In Rwanda there was a Gross underreporting of the killings in the First 2 weeks. The numbers and the killing.  Dead toll in the 2 first weeks was probably 200 to 300 000. Violonce was different in the capital.

French doctor in Benghazi: who thougth : ‘I had 5 people killed today.  Extrapolated : 1000 in Benghazi ! :  misinformation)( Rebels: disinformation) Bloodbath in Benghazi:  who used this word for the First?  It came from a Libyan ex-pat in Geneva, in Western Europe. He said for the foiorst time: “There is a bloodbath in Benghazi !  

In Rwanda the genocide was under reported.  Now they over-report it.  Reporters will not be criticised fort hat.

“Susan Rice worked for the Clinton admin, when Rwanda genocide happened.  She was opposed to intervention ! Opposed  ! ( Ku sees it as proof why she is now pro intervention.  I see it all as logical:  )


Kuperman on Fox about the kissld ambasador in Benghazi:

I got a reaction. (See below). The reaction is based on this article on WND ( WorldNetDaily)
 There in some investigation about how ambassador Stevens was killed in Benghazi. This led to a witness, admiral Kubic.  His statement is 'breaking news' for me: Kubi says that he was a kind of mediator, and that Ghadaffi offered a sease fire and also offered to leave Libya.  In fact: he delivered the country to the rebels, in a way.  Guess what: Washington did not want to hear it!
Even Kuperman did not know about this!

Is this new?  Not really: in Washington's Blog we can read that also Mullah Omar and Ghadaffi did wave the white flag, but the war had to go on.  In the case of Iraq it was probably to weaken the country , which was considered a threat to Israel.
In the case of Afghanistan and Libya I need mopre time to understand why they refused and preferred war.

A UN high comissioner, Navi Pillay, was responsable for unwarranted support for the rebels in Lybia
in a very early ( and this crucial ) stage: (  Navi Pillay )
Now she is spreading very incredible rumours about the separatists in Ukraïne: ( Women and children)

UPDATE:  here is a very good article on Lybia, july 2014: ( Gerald A. Perreira


  1. Did you know this story?: Did U.S. choose war in Libya over Gadhafi abdication?
    In March 2011, immediately after NATO’s punishing bombing campaign began, Moammar Gadhafi was “ready to step aside,” says retired Rear Adm. Charles R. Kubic, U.S. Navy. “He was willing to go into exile and was willing to end the hostilities.”
    What happened? According to Kubic, the Obama administration chose to continue the war without permitting a peace parley to go forward. Kubic made these extremely incendiary charges against the Obama administration while outlining his role as the leading, if informal, facilitator of peace feelers from the Libyan military to the U.S. military. He was speaking this week at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., where the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi was presenting its interim report.
    Through Libyan intermediaries whom he knew in his post-naval career as an engineer and businessman, Kubic was hearing that Gadhafi wanted to discuss his own possible abdication with the U.S. “Let’s keep the diplomats out of it,” Kubic says he told them. “Let’s keep the politicians out of it, let’s just have a battlefield discussion under a flag of truce between opposing military commanders pursuant to the laws of war, and see if we can, in short period of time, come up with the terms for a cease-fire and a transition of government.”
    During a follow-up telephone interview I had with Kubic, he underscored the show of good faith on both sides that created hopefulness that these flag-of-truce negotiations would come to pass. On the night of March 21, Gen. Ham issued a public statement on Libya in which he noted the U.S. was not targeting Gadhafi. By March 22, Gadhafi had verifiably begun pulling back troops from the rebel-held cities of Benghazi and Misrata. The cease-fire Hillary Clinton said the “international community” was seeking only days earlier seemed to be within reach, with the endgame of Gadhafi’s abdication and exile potentially on the table. Then, shockingly, Kubic got what amounted to a “stand down” order from AFRICOM – an order that came down from “well above Gen. Ham,” Kubic says he was told – in fact, as Kubic said in our interview, he was told it came from outside the Pentagon. U.S. Rejected Offers by Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya to Surrender … and Proceeded to Wage War

  2. Ha, een comment !

    Dat gebeurt hoogst zelden op mijn blog, moet ik helaas constateren.
    Ik begrijp niet goed waarom.
    Natuurlijk ben ik geen begenadigd schrijver, en er is een gigantisch aanbod van blogs, maar toch...

    Beste heer Roffel, beste Wim,

    hartelijk dank voor deze info.
    Nee, ik kende die niet. Dateert ook pas van april zag ik.

    Ik wist wel dat in Afghanistan Mullah Omar had aangeboden om Osama uit te leveren, mits hij een goede berechting zou krijgen. Is ook geweigerd.
    Ik zal het artikel van washingtonsblog dat daarover gaat ook gaan lezen uiteraard.
    En ik zal uw info verwerken in de bovenstaande blog.

    Toch zit er mij iets dwars: wij kunnen bloggen tot we een ons wegen, maar wat bereiken we?
    Kent U de visie die aan Karl Rove wordt toegeschreven? HIj zei zo ongeveer dit: "Prima als U na heel goed onderzoek constateert wat er werkelijk allemaal is gebeurd, maar tegen de tijd dat U dat hebt achterhaald, hebben wij de werkelijkheid al weer driemaal veranderd."

    En zo is het natuurlijk: Wij hebben nu de werkelijke toedracht in handen omtrent Afghanistan, Irak, Libië en Syrië, maar zij zijn bezig om inde Ukraïne weer precies hetzelfde te doen.
    En ze hebben de MSM in handen om dat te bereiken.

    Wist U dat er onderzoek is waaruit blijkt dat mensen pas bereid zijn om de waarheid ( zoals ze die zien) te geloven als minstens 10 % van de mensen in hun omgeving het met hen eens is? Tot die tijd kiest men voor veiligheid, en zegt men niets.

    Het is dus zinvol om meer mensen te bereiken, denkt U niet ?

    Met vr groet. J . V.