Während die Welt sich darüber freut, dass die Deutschen (Russen und Chinesen) Unrecht zu behalten scheinen mit ihren Annahmen über Libyen, ist es an der Zeit, die Irrtümer über den Konflikt in Nordafrika aufzuarbeiten.
Der linke Nahostexperte Juan Cole hat viel Gegenwind aus dem eigenen Lager zu spüren bekommen, weil er den Krieg der NATO gegen Gadhafi unterstützt hat. Cole sieht sich durch den bevorstehenden Fall des Diktators bestätigt.
Gadhafis rapiden Sturz erklärt Cole sich damit, dass der Oberst nur noch auf Gewalt setzen konnte, weil seine Herrschaft bei weiten Teilen der libyschen Bevölkerung den Rückhalt verloren hatte.
Seine Liste der 10 schlimmsten Irrtümer über die libysche Revolution ist lesenswert:
Given the controversies about the revolution, it is worthwhile reviewing the myths about the Libyan Revolution that led so many observers to make so many fantastic or just mistaken assertions about it.
1. Qaddafi was a progressive in his domestic policies. (...)
2. Qaddafi was a progressive in his foreign policy.
3. It was only natural that Qaddafi sent his military against the protesters and revolutionaries; any country would have done the same. No, it wouldn’t, and this is the argument of a moral cretin. In fact, the Tunisian officer corps refused to fire on Tunisian crowds for dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, and the Egyptian officer corps refused to fire on Egyptian crowds for Hosni Mubarak. (...)
4. There was a long stalemate in the fighting between the revolutionaries and the Qaddafi military. There was not. This idea was fostered by the vantage point of many Western observers, in Benghazi.
5. The Libyan Revolution was a civil war. It was not, if by that is meant a fight between two big groups within the body politic. There was nothing like the vicious sectarian civilian-on-civilian fighting in Baghdad in 2006. The revolution began as peaceful public protests, and only when the urban crowds were subjected to artillery, tank, mortar and cluster bomb barrages did the revolutionaries begin arming themselves. (...)
6. Libya is not a real country and could have been partitioned between east and west. (...) I don’t understand the propensity of Western analysts to keep pronouncing nations in the global south “artificial” and on the verge of splitting up. It is a kind of Orientalism. All nations are artificial. (...)
7. There had to be NATO infantry brigades on the ground for the revolution to succeed. (...) But there are not any foreign infantry brigades in Libya, and there are unlikely to be any. Libyans are very nationalistic and they made this clear from the beginning. Likewise the Arab League. NATO had some intelligence assets on the ground, but they were small in number, were requested behind the scenes for liaison and spotting by the revolutionaries, and did not amount to an invasion force. The Libyan people never needed foreign ground brigades to succeed in their revolution.
8. The United States led the charge to war. There is no evidence for this allegation whatsoever. (...) Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, the Pentagon, and Obama himself were extremely reluctant to become involved in yet another war in the Muslim world. It is obvious that the French and the British led the charge on this intervention, likely because they believed that a protracted struggle over years between the opposition and Qaddafi in Libya would radicalize it and give an opening to al-Qaeda and so pose various threats to Europe. French President Nicolas Sarkozy had been politically mauled, as well, by the offer of his defense minister, Michèle Alliot-Marie, to send French troops to assist Ben Ali in Tunisia (Alliot-Marie had been Ben Ali’s guest on fancy vacations), and may have wanted to restore traditional French cachet in the Arab world as well as to look decisive to his electorate. Whatever Western Europe’s motivations, they were the decisive ones, and the Obama administration clearly came along as a junior partner (something Sen. John McCain is complaining bitterly about).
9. Qaddafi would not have killed or imprisoned large numbers of dissidents in Benghazi, Derna, al-Bayda and Tobruk if he had been allowed to pursue his March Blitzkrieg toward the eastern cities that had defied him. But we have real-world examples of how he would have behaved, in Zawiya, Tawargha, Misrata and elsewhere. His indiscriminate shelling of Misrata had already killed between 1000 and 2000 by last April,, and it continued all summer. (...)
10. This was a war for Libya’s oil. That is daft. Libya was already integrated into the international oil markets, and had done billions of deals with BP, ENI, etc., etc. None of those companies would have wanted to endanger their contracts by getting rid of the ruler who had signed them. (...)