last update Sept. 13
Note Sept. 13: The following is a thought I had that may be of value, and may not. See the end note for more details.
Among the Tripoli massacres, I turn now to the approximately twelve victims of the fighting in Tripoli shown by many cameras now at a grassy lot in the Abu Salim neighborhood. They're black-skinned men, at least two of them bound hands-behind with plastic ties and executed. These were seen on August 25, the same day rebels first swept through Abu Salim, following another NATO bombing there.
Dan Rivers from CNN (broadcast, August 25), said "We don't know what happened to these people, whether they were executed by the rebels or, or what." He also noted, in a slightly different report, they looked like "Gaddafi fighters" (being "black Africans"), and more explicitly suggested the rebels had killed them.
But he also said, in the first link, that the area was "awful to see and smell." I thought, even from a distance, they looked a bit stiff, perhaps discolored and "ill." Ate last two seem bloated (though on closer look one of them is a rare fat Libyan). In the August heat the stench of death may settle in quicker than I thought, but ... the same day? It seemed possible that these people were killed some days prior to this footage being shot.
Stop War Crimes!. The first image (at left, and here at full resolution) is of two of these victims, close up, thousands of pixels per side. It's the two in red and white undershirts, laid heads-together with the obvious plastic ties, pulled very, very tight, we can see.
It confirms brilliantly my suspicion that the bodies were certainly not today's-kill fresh. Others needn't look close, but I did. Either or both of them might have some kind of burning injuries prior to binding, especially the left body's left arm. But on both bodies, the skin of the hands and forearms is cracking and peeling away like onion skin, showing discolored layers of decay - and perhaps even bone - underneath. Both are crawling with hundreds of maggots on the skin, and brightly colored flies or beetles on the seats of their pants. Their hands are discolored and bloated, fingers deeply blackened. The left body has a mysterious layer of brown slime beneath his arms, where the skin of his lower back should be.
I'm no expert on these things, but I think these guys had already been dead at least a week before they were seen on this grass on August 25.
Of the other photos shown at Stop War Crimes!, both also huge resolution, and all given as August 25. One of them (full resolution) is of five people killed in a medical tent (previously reported). They wear loyalist green cloths on their wrists, and were freshly slaughtered, injured and tending alike. No mercy for those who refused to embrace "the revolution" at their gates. This is a rebel war crime, plain as day.
But the other image (full res) shows a small pile of at least five people, apparently not black, some in camouflage pants but not clearly soldiers (one has the boots too, but one is fat). They're on the sandy ground outside some walled compound, doused in some kind of oil and partially burnt (one visible face is grisly). These bodies, like those at the roundabout, seem to be a bit decomposed and discolored as well, prior to burning. In both cases where decay is involved, things get more complicated.
If the bodies were dead before the rebels ever got there, a natural presumption is they were killed by those in charge there prior - the Gaddafi regime. I predict this will be announced fairly soon, to some perplexity. "But Gaddafi hires the black men," people think (wrongly, for the most part), "and the rebels kill them, regrettably but understandably." (see some of the videos to see how understandable they are) I predict the rebel/PR drone explanation for these long-dead black men will be this:
"These were mercenaries that the racist user of black men, Muammar Gaddafi, felt were "expendable." He had them killed just to drop in the Freedom Fighters' path, to frame them as horrible negro-killers!"
The rebel forces across "free Libya" have on their own earned quite a reputation (if under-reported) for anti-black racism and summary killings, torture, etc. I always figured they'd need to address and "correct" this PR problem some day. And this decay-enabled claim might let them lamely say the whole notion was regime propaganda. "They were the ones sending black guys against us, and here even killing them and blaming us! Just look at the decay, they were dead before we got there! We have black members of the rebellion, see? Black people, and Africa, love us! We're really okay!"
But if this is a frame-up, it's not to the rebels' credit that, aside from the rot, it would work so well. These people still look, even to a mainstream media journalist who was smelling them, like the ones rebels love to kill, in the way they're known to do it.
Think about it this way: if a killing were to happen just before the rebels entered, it would be hard to prove with any precision they weren't killed just after they rolled in. But if the decay is advanced enough, it would make the perfect cover - so long as we all just presume the killing happened where the bodies were found. And pinning this on Gaddafi's forces - like so many other bogus charges have been pinned - requires that presumption.
They could have been executed by the rebels in any one of their many atrocities on the long road to Tripoli (nearby az Zawiyah is popping to mind). If the killing and the filming are separated by days of time, why not by miles of space? If they had surplus dead bodies to explain (likely), and too many "Gaddafi" mass graves in their wake already (only a few of them publicly known yet, in Qawalish, Qawalish, and Tawergha), they could solve both problems and get a further, twofold advantage quite simply. They might truck in a few dozen corpses, or more, and basically plant them on Gaddafi by tossing them about inside and around his compound and strongholds.
That probably sounds pretty insane to most, but sadly, it's just not so. It makes entirely too much f***ing sense.
Nonetheless, expect the "truth" to emerge (as it is) that the regime was killing like crazy for a week or so before the rebel attack, to suppress the masses and, perhaps, even to give the rebels a bad name along the way as racists. But the maggots prove that, all fears aside, the rebels must have actually interrupted a bloodbath in Tripoli and thus saved countless lives!
Such a handy illusion, all at their disposal with some ingenuity and the simple by-product of their bestial bloodbath across Libya.
Note Sept. 13: Apparently the battles around Abu Salim had been going on for some couple of days prior to the filming of Aug 25, and I can't rule out 2-3 days decay. Though earlier I said it was at least a week, one reader at least contested that, suggesting as little as one day may have passed. I'll say as few as two days, perhaps, but still no expert. These guys are:
The bodies which had more sun exposure took longer to display insect activity than those bodies in the shadier areas.""
"By the afternoon of Day 1 some initial signs of decomposition were present, including marbling on the legs and some fly activity around the head (Figure 6). By Day 2 the marbling was also apparent on the arms, and some skin slippage was noted. Fly activity was also much more prevalent. Maggot activity was first noted on Day 4, and appeared to peak around Day 8 (Figure 7). Bloat was noted on Day 6.
We have bodies that seem by the burn, cracking skin, to have been exposed to sun, suggesting day 4 or later. Some bodies were bloated, suggesting day 6 or so. The studies in that PDF were done in Tennessee, which is quite different from Libya. That's my research for now.
So the possibility of local combat death for these rotting black men is there, but strange. The victims at the medical tent right next to the dump were clearly killed days later than them, likely just hours before the cameras rolled in. Why were they giving medical care for days while leaving so many rotting bodies just outside the tent, not even covered? I still suspect planting as outlined, but the rationale is slightly less clear than I at first thought.