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Arab League condemns broad bombing campaign in Libya

CAIRO—The Arab League secretary general, Amr Moussa, deplored the broad scope of the U.S.-European bombing campaign in Libya and said Sunday that he would call a league meeting to reconsider Arab approval of the Western military intervention.

Moussa said the Arab League’s approval of a no-fly zone on March 12 was based on a desire to prevent Moammar Gaddafi’s air force from attacking civilians and was not designed to endorse the intense bombing and missile attacks — including on Tripoli, the capital, and on Libyan ground forces — whose images have filled Arab television screens for two days.

“What is happening in Libya differs from the aim of imposing a no-fly zone,” he said in a statement on the official Middle East News Agency. “And what we want is the protection of civilians and not the shelling of more civilians.”

Moussa’s declaration suggested that some of the 22 Arab League members were taken aback by what they have seen and wanted to modify their approval lest they be perceived as accepting outright Western military intervention in Libya. Although the eccentric Gaddafi is widely looked down on in the Arab world, the leaders and people of the Middle East traditionally have risen up in emotional protest at the first sign of Western intervention.

A shift away from the Arab League endorsement, even partial, would be an important setback to the U.S.-European campaign. Western leaders brandished the Arab League decision as a justification for their decision to move militarily and as a weapon in the debate to win approval for a U.N. Security Council resolution two days before the bombing began.

As U.S. and European military operations entered their second day, however, most Arab governments maintained public silence, and the strongest expressions of opposition came from the greatest distance. Presidents Hugo Chavez of Venezuela, Daniel Ortega of Nicaragua and Evo Morales of Bolivia and former Cuban president Fidel Castro condemned the intervention and suggested that Western powers were seeking to get their hands on Libya’s oil reserves rather than limit the bloodshed in the country.

Russia and China, which abstained on the U.N. Security Council resolution authorizing military intervention, also expressed regret that Western powers had chosen to get involved despite their advice.

In the Middle East, the abiding power of popular distrust of Western intervention was evident despite the March 12 Arab League decision. It was not clear how many Arab governments shared the hesitations voiced by Moussa, who has said that he plans to run for president in Egypt this year. But so far only the Western-oriented Persian Gulf emirate of Qatar has announced that it would participate despite Western efforts to enlist Arab military forces into the campaign.

The Qatari prime minister, Hamad bin Jasim al-Thani, told reporters that the kingdom made its decision in order to “stop the bloodbath” that he said Gaddafi was inflicting on rebel forces and civilians in opposition-controlled cities. He did not describe the extent of Qatar’s military involvement or what the mission of Qatari aircraft or personnel would be alongside U.S., French and British planes and ships that have carried out the initial strikes.

Islam Lutfi, a lawyer and Muslim Brotherhood leader in Egypt, said he opposed the military intervention because the real intention of the United States and its European allies was to get into position to benefit from Libya’s oil supplies. “The countries aligned against Libya are there not for humanitarian reasons but to further their own interests,” he added.

But the Muslim Brotherhood and its allies in the youth coalition that spearheaded Egypt’s recent upheavals took no official position. They were busy with a referendum Saturday on constitutional amendments designed to usher in democracy into the country. Similarly, the provisional military-run government took no stand, and most Cairo newspapers gave only secondary space to the Libya conflict.

When the Arab League approved imposition of a no-fly zone, only Syria and Algeria opposed the decision, according to Egyptian officials. Syria’s Foreign Ministry on Thursday reiterated its government’s opposition, as diplomatic momentum gathered for the U.S.-European operation, saying the country rejected “all forms of foreign interference in Libyan affairs.”

Al-Qaeda, which could be expected to oppose foreign intervention in an Arab country and embrace Gaddafi’s description of the Western campaign as a new crusade, made no immediate comment. This was probably due in part to the difficulty for the al-Qaeda leadership to communicate without revealing its position. But it also was brought to mind Gaddafi’s frequent assertions that al-Qaeda was behind the Libyan revolt and that he and the West should work hand in hand to defeat the rebels.

Iran and its Shiite Muslim allies in the Lebanese organization Hezbollah, reflexively opposed to Western influence in the Middle East, also were forced into a somewhat equivocal position, condemning Gaddafi for his bloody tactics but opposing the Western military intervention.

“The fact that most Arab and Muslim leaders did not take responsibility opened the way for Western intervention in Libya,” declared Hasan Nasrallah, the Hezbollah’s leader, in video speech Sunday to his followers. “This opens the way for foreign interventions in every Arab country. It brings us back to the days of occupation, colonization and partition.”

At the same time, Nasrallah accused Gaddafi of using the same brutal tactics against his opponents as Israel has against Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

The Iranian Foreign Ministry, which previously criticized Gaddafi’s crackdown, on Sunday expressed “doubts” about U.S. and European intentions. Like the Latin American critics, it suggested that the claims of wanting to protect civilians were just a cover for a desire to install a more malleable leadership in Tripoli and make it easier to exploit Libya’s oil.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/arab-league-condemns-broad-bombing-campaign-in-libya/2011/03/20/AB1pSg1_story.html

 
Poll

Added: Mar-20-2011 Occurred On: Mar-20-2011
By: ezrider1967
In:
Iran, Middle East
Tags: no-fly zone, arab league, Nato
Views: 8277 | Comments: 60 | Votes: 0 | Favorites: 0 | Shared: 0 | Updates: 0 | Times used in channels: 1
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  • Comment of user 'nurdmyth' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
    • Exactly...

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (8) | Report

    • You don't understand. The arab league JUMPED at the first chance to avoid sending their own loyal subjects out of their respected fiefdoms. Now they can breath a sigh of relief,
      BASH the crusader west, have their population agree and chant "death to america" while distracting them from their own problems with their own overlords.

      ..it is written in the Q'uran
      -> life is good when you can use the kaffir to do your bidding

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (9) | Report

    • Exactly, again. Everyone knows the US is there only because of NATO obligations. France knows this too, otherwise they wouldn't even risk going against a 4th-world loser like Kadummy.

      What the hell is this "Arab League" anyway? What do they do? What have they ever done? Why should anyone care what they say? What are they - some 14-year-old guys who have an internet connection?

      Who cares? Shoot them, dust to dust, the world will be a better place.

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (1) | Report

    • ^X2

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (0) | Report

    • when we all ride our bikes to work we can say that.......until then a stable barrel of oil is the task at hand.

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (0) | Report

  • arabs are disgraceful, two faced people

    Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

    (13) | Report

    • Check out this al Jazeera article posted less then SEVEN DAYS ago;

      ""Where are the Arabs""?

      http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/opinion/2011/03/201131365925476865.html

      a brief history of inaction going back some 30 yrs.

      lol

      oh,
      but they stand united and voice outrage AFTER the war hammer crashed and smashed the delicate emotional feelings of a meglamaniac lunatic and their mantra is " yet another biatch slap on the arab world "


      No more air miss More..

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (2) | Report

    • exactly again.

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (0) | Report

    • A fitting codicil.

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (0) | Report

    • Two faced. Okay how's this, the Libya civilians rise up against their leader and he starts killing them. The west doesn't like the killings so a no fly zone is enforced. In Bahrain the civilians rise up and the Saudi government declares all protest in their country illegal and sends their troops into Bahrain to slaughter those protesters. And the west says nothing. I'm not taken any political sides, just pointing out the hypocrisy. And that makes me wonder, when the American population raises up More..

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (1) | Report

  • Like I posted before
    We should keep out of this
    Its an internal affair
    Only a few days and the Muslims are already complaining that we are killing them
    Let them kill each other.
    Its better that they complain theat we arent helping them than having them strap bombs on and try and blow up innocent civillians in retalliation
    There has never been a single succesful example of the wests involvement in the middle east.
    It just spurs the neanderthals on to have another reason to hate us More..

    Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

    (10) | Report

  • We should sent them the fucking bill.
    Assholes.

    Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

    (9) | Report

  • I suppose the 'arab league' (what a pompous name) could have done it themselves... they didn't so they should shut the fuck up.

    Worthless arabs always bitch and whine no matter what happens.

    Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

    (6) | Report

    • The Arab League is made of dictators who themselves squash rebellion for democracy in their own country with automatic weapons. A gang of hypocritical snakes armed by our industry. Unfortunately, there is no alternate party. The Arab world is rotten to the bones.

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (5) | Report

  • What the fuck? first they ask for help to us and then they complain about our methods? then do it yourselves next time you stupid arab fuckers and don't ask for help.

    Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

    (5) | Report

  • Day one: "We need your help!!"
    Day two: "Infidel crusaders go home!"

    I admit it was stupid of the US to get involved in this shit storm, but this flip flopping Arab League is just as culpable as those sending in the bombs and missiles. Were they expecting the west to go in there and drop daisies and daffodils?

    Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

    (4) | Report

  • I would like to see any, or all of the Arab Leauges military's impose a no fly zone, and preform that duty without wounding or killing any civilians.

    Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

    (4) | Report

    • And actually take on Gaddafi without civilian losses.

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (3) | Report

    • If all your doing in enforcing a no-fly zone is to make sure there are no fighter aircraft flying sorties than there shouldn't be any civilian casualties. But if your only using the no-fly zone as a pretext to help overthrow the Libyan government by attacking pro-government ground targets than that's another matter.

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (-2) | Report

    • obama said wants ghadaffy to give up half the country., vacate his military or he'll lay waste to it;
      http://english.aljazeera.net/news/africa/2011/03/2011320202616794816.html

      8:27pm Obama says that Gaddafi has lost the legitimacy to lead his people, and asserts that he must comply with the conditions set in the UN resolution. He says that Gaddafi must withdraw forces from Ajdabiyah, Misurata, Az Zawiyah and stop an advance on Benghazi, and must also restore water and power to all cities.

      More..

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (1) | Report

    • Are you a moron? how can we make sure there are no fighter planes flying if the Lybian air defense will shoot any NATO plane on sight? use your fucking brain.

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (4) | Report

    • We have targeted his Radar and Anti aircraft sites and the news showed Kaddaffi supporters chanting around the targets we are hitting. I believe we are in a close tie right now with him on killing Civilians.
      Don't you watch CNN

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (1) | Report

  • Comment of user 'HKuseless' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
    • The arab league signed off on a no fly zone that included this caveat;
      The no drive zone. They kew his shit was gonna get spanked sitting out in the middle of the no shit desert exposed to all sorts of natural elements

      Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

      (0) | Report

  • The Arab League will only support Gaddafi,
    West did all right when we support the people,
    it's The Arab League leaders who are the problem,
    stop sell weapons to them and other tech stuff.

    Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

    (3) | Report

  • Thank you for your opinion, Arab League. Your opinion is very important to us...

    Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

    (2) | Report

  • Will we never learn? Try and help and then they bite the hand that feeds them. We all (western powers) need to just learn to stay out of that shit. Make them help themselves for once.

    Posted Mar-23-2011 By 

    (2) | Report

  • it's inbreeding that makes the arab world so crazy, not the heat. 5 families run everything. even new jersey has more families running it than the whole arab world.

    Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

    (1) | Report

  • Comment of user 'rick761953' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
  • Why do we have to be the worlds police,and why are we the American tax payers flipping the bill for the campaign,let these prehistoric desert people kill each other till the last savage is standing,use my tax payer money to help the Japanese people who deserve our help.

    Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

    (1) | Report

    • Comment of user 'rick761953' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
  • Fuck Lybians. They killed Doc Brown.

    Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

    (1) | Report

  • nobody cares about muslims they don't want freedom they'll all be calling for sharia law next

    Posted Mar-21-2011 By 

    (1) | Report

  • The disgusting Arab league should be bombed!

    Posted Mar-21-2011 By 

    (1) | Report

  • You see that was a trap!

    Posted Mar-21-2011 By 

    (1) | Report

  • Comment of user 'Amusing' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
  • LOL I knew they would pull this shit.

    Posted Mar-21-2011 By 

    (1) | Report

  • That poll makes no sense. arab league CAN'T put together a no fly zone cuz they themselves Don't have their SH!T together.


    They would have accepted khadaffy's triumph in quashing those revolution making trouble makers and honored him at the UN with a formal dinner

    lol
    oh, thats how things play out

    Posted Mar-20-2011 By 

    (0) | Report

  • They are getting exactly what they asked for last week. You have to bomb/missile strike things on the ground in order to establish air supremacy for a "no-fly zone".

    Posted Mar-21-2011 By 

    (0) | Report

  • "Broad bombing campaign"? Are you kidding? Fookin Muslims need to clean up their own house in their usual wholesale, slaughter-intensive way. Scumbags.

    Posted Mar-21-2011 By 

    (0) | Report

  • Stupid fucking Arabs. They condemn the defense of innocent civilians, but won't condemn the murder of innocent civilians by these savages?

    Posted Mar-21-2011 By 

    (0) | Report