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Sunday, July 10, 2011

Amnesty International: Making Sense on Libya

June 28 2011
slight edits July 10

(props Peet73 for the tip)

Amnesty International, the premier Human Rights group - by some measures, I would presume - has just the other day taken an unusual stance vis-a-vis the Libyan civil war. A blanket discreditation of several prevalent conspiracy theories about the Libyan government's behavior. To keep it simple, here's a big excerpt from the UK Telegraph's story on it, and a link for the rest.

Human rights organisations have cast doubt on claims of mass rape and other abuses perpetrated by forces loyal to Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, which have been widely used to justify Nato's war in Libya.

Nato leaders, opposition groups and the media have produced a stream of stories since the start of the insurrection on 15 February, claiming the Gaddafi regime has ordered mass rapes, used foreign mercenaries and employed helicopters against civilian protesters.

An investigation by Amnesty International has failed to find evidence for these human rights violations and in many cases has discredited or cast doubt on them. It also found indications that on several occasions the rebels in Benghazi appeared to have knowingly made false claims or manufactured evidence.

The findings by the investigators appear to be at odds with the views of the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, who two weeks ago told a press conference that "we have information that there was a policy to rape in Libya those who were against the government. Apparently he [Colonel Gaddafi] used it to punish people."

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton last week said she was "deeply concerned" that Gaddafi's troops were participating in widespread rape in Libya.
My money's on Mrs. Clinton and Mr. M-O being wrong here. Hands down.

Again, by this, the claims rebuffed are:
- Gaddafi ordered mass rapes (accepted by M-O as a basis for arrest warrants)
- Gaddafi used foreign mercenaries (M-O's basis for wanting to arrest Saif Gaddfi was for recruiting these)
- Gaddafi employed helicopters against civilian protesters (not to mention fighter jets, allegedly)

These have already been questioned by those "less credible" like myself (African MercenariesRape orders) Along with many other accusations like:
- Gaddafi ordered snipers to shoot children in Misrata
- Gaddafi ordered 130 of his soldiers executed in the east for refusing to shoot protesters
- Gaddafi ordered the cluster bombing of Misrata
- etc ...

And it goes past AI to other prominent voices in the Human Rights world, willing now to rock the boat.
Liesel Gerntholtz, head of women's rights at Human Rights Watch, which also investigated the charge of mass rape, said: "We have not been able to find evidence."
The Telegraph had to counter:
Credible evidence of rape came when Eman al-Obeidy burst into a hotel in Tripoli on 26 March to tell journalists she had been gang-raped before being dragged away by the Libyan security services.
On the bolded - ??? - She's got the Qatari government beating her up now too (but no rape charges there)!
Rebels have repeatedly charged that mercenary troops from Central and West Africa have been used against them. The Amnesty investigation found there was no evidence for this. "Those shown to journalists as foreign mercenaries were later quietly released," says Ms Rovera. "Most were sub-Saharan migrants working in Libya without documents."

Others were not so lucky and were lynched or executed. Ms Rovera found two bodies of migrants in the Benghazi morgue and others were dumped on the outskirts of the city. She says: "The politicians kept talking about mercenaries, which inflamed public opinion and the myth has continued because they were released without publicity."
My observation here - their more astute plotters learned from watching the best - the Anglo-American propaganda machine against Libya, the ones responsible for the travesty of the Lockerbie "investigation."

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