[Marxism] How Libya defies conventional political analysis

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Fri Feb 14 19:21:40 MST 2014


(This is the consequence of the deep state being smashed. Has there been 
another society in the 21st century that has existed in such a state of 
anarchy, in the sense of a state being smashed? Libya has its problems 
but mercifully they are far different than Egypt's.)

NY Times Feb. 14 2014
In Libya, a Coup. Or Perhaps Not.
By DAVID D. KIRKPATRICK

CAIRO — Stealing a page from neighboring Egypt, a senior army officer in 
Libya on Friday announced a military takeover, the suspension of 
Parliament and a new “road map” for the future.

Then, nothing happened. Prime Minister Ali Zeidan called the supposed 
coup “ridiculous.” A military spokesman called it “a lie.” None of the 
Libyan Army’s few tanks or soldiers made any visible moves. The empty 
Parliament was quiet.

It was the latest evidence of the long shadow cast across the region by 
the military takeover in Cairo last summer that was announced by 
Abdul-Fattah el-Sisi, then an army general. The attempted imitation in 
Libya, though, demonstrated the limits of the Egyptian example.

While Egypt’s military ushered out President Hosni Mubarak three years 
ago and dominated the political transition, the Libyan military never 
had much cohesion even under Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi, and it had 
splintered long before his ouster.

The Libyan transitional government has struggled in vain to build a 
national military or internal security force that might subdue fractious 
local militias that have sprung up across the country. Perhaps the most 
positive aspect of the Libyan chaos may be a rough balance of local 
powers, in which no single leader or institution is strong enough to 
declare a coup or dictate a “road map.”

But that did not stop Maj. Gen. Khalifa Hifter from trying on Friday. He 
was once a senior officer under Colonel Qaddafi but broke with him more 
than two decades ago over his unsuccessful war with Chad. General Hifter 
fled to exile in Northern Virginia and returned in 2011 to join the 
Libyan uprising.

He was falsely rumored at one point to have been named to lead the rebel 
military offensive. But he has never held a top military title like 
defense minister or chief of staff. Some reports on Friday indicated he 
was retired, although the distinction between active and inactive 
military personnel is blurry in Libya’s loosely organized armed forces.

“The national command of the Libyan Army is declaring a movement for a 
new road map” to rescue the country, General Hifter declared Friday in a 
video posted online and sent to news outlets.

His speech echoed the declaration that General Sisi, now Field Marshal 
Sisi, made last July 3 about a new “road map” for Egypt and like the 
field marshal, General Hifter also pledged to “hold meetings with 
different parties and groups regarding implementing this road map.”

Mr. Zeidan, who has also struggled to organize and control a government, 
quickly shot down the idea. “Libya is stable,” he told Reuters. 
Parliament “is doing its work, and so is the government,” he added.

“The army is in its headquarters, and Khalifa Hifter has no authority,” 
Mr. Zeidan said. “No military u




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