Qunfuz

Robin Yassin-Kassab

Archive for the ‘Libya’ Category

Infantile Leftism

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picture by Ali Farzat

It certainly feels uncomfortable to watch American, British and French planes enforcing a no-fly zone over Libya, bombing Libya’s anti-aircraft defences and destroying Libyan tanks. Certainly the hypocrisy of the West and the Arab dictators is as galling as ever. There’s no chance of a no-fly zone over Palestine and Lebanon, nor over Saudi-occupied Bahrain. I can understand very well the fears of some that the West will overstay its welcome – although I think this is very unlikely indeed.

I am pleased, however, that the joint British-French-Lebanese (with Hizbullah in government in Lebanon) resolution for the no-fly zone has been adopted by the United Nations, that the massacres of the Libyan people may be minimised or stopped, that liberated Benghazi will probably not now fall to the tyrant.

If Britain, France and others are seeking influence in post-Qaddafi Libya by pleasing the Libyan people, that’s fine by me. Perhaps they fear their companies being banned from Libya as a punishment for supporting the dictator, and they are taking this opportunity to make amends. Again, fine. This is how things are done between strong, free countries which respect each other. It’s not the same as, for instance, Western powers arming and politically supporting the Saud family in return for military bases which are hated by the Saudi Arabian population.

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

March 20, 2011 at 4:33 pm

Posted in Libya

A Tribe Called Libya

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picture by Asma Waguih/ Reuters

Our Tripolitanian witness is alive and well in an Arab country beyond Libya’s borders. Free to use the internet again, she has sent some old reports. This one is from March 7th.

Today is the 7th March 2011, one of the most horrible days that Libya has witnessed since the ‘Greatest Libyan Revolution’ began. Zawiya has seen the nastiest massacres. The city was attacked from 8 am until 9pm; in the morning there were over 1500 protestors in the city streets, and by the end of the day there was no one. Hundreds were brutally murdered by heavy machine guns, missiles, and tanks, others were seriously injured, and some were lucky enough to stay alive.

In Misurata, snipers executed two martyrs after they stopped Qaddafi’s thugs mounting the roof of their building. In Ras Lanoof, families are evacuating the city as Qaddafi’s thugs are getting more brutal by attacking houses and buildings (even mosques) and killing civilians. As a matter of fact, I received confirmed news that a whole family was viciously murdered in their car as they were leaving Ras Lanoof. So Qaddafi and his supporters are not only killing people who try to protest and stand up for freedom, but also people who want to run away for their life to a more secure area.

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

March 20, 2011 at 2:49 pm

Posted in Libya

Tripolitanian Abnormality

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Steve Bell's Qaddafi

Our Tripolitanian witness is alive and well in an Arab country beyond Libya’s borders. Free to use the internet again, she has sent some old reports. The first is from early March.

Today I went out in my area, Ben Ashour, and all the shops were still closed in the main street. I stopped by the bakery for bread and I found a long line of people waiting; the bakery of my area gives each person a rationed number of loaves so each can have at least some bread by the end of the day. I also went to Fashloom, near my neighborhood, and I noticed a weird silence and only a few people walking in that area, the walls all clean of the anti-Qaddafi graffiti that had covered them earlier. I also noticed two cars belonging to Qaddafi’s thugs parked (and undoubtedly armed) in the corners of the tiny streets of Fashloom. Some thugs were dressed like civilians and yet I could tell who they were by their car. Others were wearing military outfits and standing alertly in front of their cars. A member of my family sadly confirmed to me that some families they know in Fashloom (and other areas) had buried their epic martyrs in the gardens of their houses, for they were scared the bodies would be taken away from them by Qaddafi’s thugs.

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

March 20, 2011 at 2:15 pm

Posted in Libya

Should the No-Fly Zone Fly?

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For those of you wondering what’s become of our informant in Tripoli, I’ve heard from a member of her family who lives here in Britain that she is physically safe but in a difficult emotional state – terrified and very tired. The internet is properly down now, and Human Rights Watch reports a wave of “arbitrary arrests and forced disappearances” throughout the capital.

To the west of Tripoli, the heroic city of Zawiya has fallen after Qaddafi’s forces bombed schools, hospitals, mosques and private homes. There are reports of random mass arrests there too. We can be sure that executions and torture are continuing on a massive scale. Further east, first Bin Jawad, then Ras Lanuf and now Brega have been reclaimed by the tyrant after heavy aerial bombardment. It seems that my earlier optimism was misplaced. The Libyan revolution risks drowning in blood. If it does, the larger Arab revolution may well grind to a temporary halt.

This worries me far more than the prospect of Western intervention, because the West is currently in no position to occupy or control Libya. The West’s economy is precarious to say the least, partly because of the adventures in Iraq and Afghanistan. In Iraq, the mighty American army was tied down and humiliated although no more than 20% of the people rose against the occupation at any one time, and despite the political incompetence and sectarian divisions of the resistance. In Afghanistan, NATO achieved the amazing feat of making the almost universally hated Taliban popular again. While the West squanders treasure and blood, China has signed the contracts to exploit Afghanistan’s resources.

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

March 13, 2011 at 5:57 pm

Posted in Iraq, Libya

Daughter of a Martyr

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picture by Ali Farzat

Anonymous eye witness in Tripoli:

After more than ten days at home, yesterday morning I went out for some grocery shopping, and I noticed a sad and fearful quietness in the faces of the Libyans in the streets because of the inhumane events which are happening. The streets are very quiet and almost empty. People no longer feel safe enough to walk in the streets even in daylight. In fact, the shops near here are all closed; only a few small grocery markets are open so people can buy the basic needs (water, flour, oil).

There is an apparent shortage of all goods in the market, including dairy products, beverages, and vegetables. All the goods are highly expensive. We wanted to buy flour but we couldn’t find any. Also people are buying up whatever is available. Two days ago I saw my neighbors carrying big bags of flour. They told me that some bakeries are running out of bread, and that soon all bakeries and food shops will close. Prices of food have almost doubled (a bag of 20 eggs used to cost between 4.75/5LYD, and now it costs 10 LYD). People are suffering between the need to stock up with adequate quanties of food and water on the one hand and the sudden high prices on the other.

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

March 1, 2011 at 10:59 pm

Posted in Libya

Stay in Your Home You Will Be Safe

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From our anonymous eyes and ears in Tripoli.

Right after Friday prayers, people started to leave the mosque which is a two-minute walk from my building. I could hear that gunfire had already started in another area before the people finished their prayers. As the peaceful protestors left the mosque, they started to chant: La Ellaha Ela ALLAH, Qaddafi Adouaa Allah – “There is no god but God, Qaddafi is the enemy of God”. The moment I saw that scene I was so happy, proud, and speechless!

The gunfire in my area, and in Souk Jomaa, Mayzaran, Siyahiya, Dahra and elsewhere, was random and didn’t stop until around 5 pm.

A short time after the protestors passed by my street, an open car with 5 armed thugs parked in front of my building. They opened fire in the air, and then one of them said loudly, “Whoever doesn’t like Qaddafi, get out of your house now!” Then he said, “As long as you stay inside your homes you will be safe, and whoever comes out will be immediately killed.”

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

February 26, 2011 at 11:08 pm

Posted in Libya

The Satan of Our History

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liberated Shahat city. photo by Reuters

Latest from our freedom-loving friend in Tripoli:

I am in Tripoli, on the 24th February at 1pm. As I heard in the news this morning that Zawiya city is under attack, I called my friend in Zawiya to check. He confirmed to me that Zawiya city has been under ruthless and continuous attack since last night at around 2am. He also reported that around 8am there was very heavy gunfire and the sound of exploding bombs. He told me he was terrified because the gunfire didn’t stop the whole night. (An eye witness told al-Jazeera that at least 100 people have been killed in Zawiya this morning).

Minutes after my call with my friend, I received confirmed news that Misurata is under attack too by the so-called security forces, and a little girl along with many other injured people were brought to Misurata hospital.

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

February 24, 2011 at 5:46 pm

Posted in Libya

Scandalously Done

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picture by Carlos Latuff

Our witness in Tripoli writes:

At 2am I hear gunfire and screaming coming from far. Hours later, I heard that a woman was randomly shot by ‘security forces’ while she was standing by her window in an area called Zawiyat Adahmani, which is near the area of Ben Ashour, where I live.

Last night there were big celebrations around the streets and mainly in Green Square by the thug’s supporters (when 2 days ago almost 1000 martyrs were brutally killed). Following his threatening speech, anyone who walks in the streets of Tripoli by night will be cleared (killed) right away- exactly as he said. Right after the celebrations, non-Libyan mercenaries and some black Libyans (from the south) belonging to ‘kitaib khamis‘ (the Khamis Qaddafi Brigade) were spread all around Tripoli (there is a video taken proves mercenaries driving around the area of Fashloom- at least 8 open cars).

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

February 23, 2011 at 9:17 pm

Posted in Libya

Cockroach Rule

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Mussolini and his mistress. April 1945

Our informant in Tripoli, last I heard, was at home, terrified, trying her best to remain calm amid the sound of heavy gunfire.

Tripoli is very hotly contested. Reports suggest eastern Libya, meanwhile, has become an anarchist’s paradise. Benghazi, Tobruk, al-Bayda and smaller towns and villages are in the hands of the people and revolutionary soldiers. Committees have been formed for neighbourhood protection, rubbish collection and traffic direction. The mood is peaceful, triumphant and fearless. Two war planes have been landed in Benghazi by pilots who refuse to bomb the people. Another crashed outside the city after its pilots parachuted out. Today the city of Misurata, in the west, has also been liberated.

Qaddafi’s regime has already collapsed. The army in Misurata, and in the Jebel al-Akhdar region, has joined the people. A statement by high-ranking officers asks all military personnel to head to Tripoli to remove Qaddafi. The Interior Minister and the Justice Minister have resigned, as have many diplomats. All prominent Libyan tribal and religious leaders have backed the revolution. At least a quarter of the country’s oil output has halted; a tribal leader in the east threatened to stop supplies to Europe if Qaddafi continued to kill – and indeed the pipeline to Italy is now dry.

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

February 23, 2011 at 4:44 pm

How Many Martyrs?

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Our thoughts and prayers are with the heroes and heroines and martyrs of Libya, and with our brave correspondent in Tripoli, now under fire. Communication is on and off, mainly off. Here is her most recent report. Since she sent it the phone lines have been cut entirely and the city’s electricity is also disconnected.

I live in the Ben Ashour area of Tripoli. Minutes ago my neighborhood was under severe aircraft attacks. Non-Libyan mercenaries are attacking the people. 60 brave Libyans from the army were executed because they refused to kill their own brothers who were going on totally peaceful, unarmed demonstrations.

I hear the nonstop gun machines all round the area of Ben Ashour. We are witnessing the second massacre today and the death toll is reaching 250 in Tripoli and increasing! At this very moment I’m seeing at least 4 jets flying around the city of Ben Ashour. Armed mercenaries are located in different areas of Tripoli, mainly: Ben Ashour, Fashloum, Soug Ejoumaa, Gergaresh.

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

February 21, 2011 at 10:29 pm

Posted in Libya

The Fall of The People

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Our friend in Tripoli reports.

A new morning with more horrific news. Yesterday in Benghazi Qaddafi henchmen fired at mourners of the dead – and during the burial services of more than 80 martyrs – with machine guns. The families burying their beloved heroes were all shot in the cemetery – الله أكبر (Allahu akbar!) Qaddafi is taking out his lunatic rage against the people of Libya!

Benghazi confirmed the death of 200 in one hospital. There is no question now it was a massacre in Libya. And this morning, the heroes of Benghazi are burying more than 216 martyrs. Reports are informing me that the total death toll is over 400 by now.

Last night in Tripoli, they released many prisoners of ‘’Jdayda’’ (most of them are criminals or illegal/homeless immigrants from different African countries) to terrorize people, attack protestors and steal houses. They kept only prisoners that belong to ward 9 (which contains the most deadly dangerous criminals). Gaddafi also released the female section of the prison and now Tripoli city is filled with thugs and criminals everywhere and it has become unsafe to go out alone. It’s obvious that Qaddafi wants the fall of the people (a play on The People Want The Fall of the Regime).

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

February 20, 2011 at 9:51 pm

Posted in Libya

Massacre in Benghazi

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An update from our freedom-loving friend in Tripoli.

Internet is restored in Libya after 6 hours offline. Kaddafi’s regime is circulating messages to people in Benghazi saying: ‘’Mercenaries in east Libya are killing people and water has been poisoned by unidentified source’’. Gaddafi is facing the fight of his life; not only he is violently responding to protesters, but he is taking advantages of those mercenaries coming from African poor countries – who barely understand or are aware of what’s going on inside Libya and tempt them with small amount of money to KILL Libyans. Around 100 martyrs were killed in 4 days only!

Today, I called my friend in Benghazi. She told me: ‘’We are hungry, no food supplies for us; people are dying more and more everyday, women and children are amongst the dead in the horrific Benghazi massacre, we are isolated from the media coverage.” She also told me that yesterday three tanks tried to roll in but the soldiers abandoned them and citizens burned them. And yesterday night, the hospitals announced 40 dead martyrs including children (one child died- 13 years old), and this morning saw the death of 15 martyrs. Hospitals are running out of medical supplies & are calling for urgent need of medical aid; gun shots barely stop, and helicopters are firing and throwing bombs on protestors. Yet beyond all this mess, she is proud that people in east Libya are doing their best to recover from the virus that has been ruling Libya for over 40 years.

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

February 19, 2011 at 10:56 pm

Posted in Libya

Latest from Libya

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Our friend in Tripoli reports:

It was only one day and it has already witnessed the burial service of 30 martyrs in Hawari cemetery in Benghazi. A source from al-Jalaa hospital in Benghazi confirmed that most of the dead people are between the ages of 13 to 36 years old, including 40 to 50 injured people. The number of martyrs and injured people are growing all around the cities of east Libya and hospitals in Benghazi issued urgent calls for all types of blood.

Today I believe things are getting worse, Gaddafi’s regime has cut all means of communication (land lines, cell phones, internet), water, electricity and gas services from Benghazi, Darna, Zentan, and several cities in east Libya, yet Benghazi is winning by keeping its highly increased courageous spirits and the determination to put an end to the 42 years of oppression.

Today some people from different corners of Tripoli (like Fashloom & Joumhouriya Street) are repeatedly trying to go on demonstrations against the regime but they were immediately oppressed by the backbones of Gaddafi’s regime, who are paid and armed to stop by all means any chance of peaceful demonstrations.

Not forget to mention that on the 16th of February, the night before the Day of Rage’ in Libya, the Libyana company, a Libyan mobile phone company owned by Saif El Islam (one of Geddafi‘s sons) circulated messages to people’s cell phones warning them against crossing ” The Four Red Lines”:

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

February 18, 2011 at 10:30 pm

Posted in Libya

Blood in Libya

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A report from a friend in Tripoli. She must remain nameless.

bread, freedom, human dignity

I’m here and safe for now, al-hamdullah. There is no internet in Libya, and maybe there will be no electricity in the coming days. I uploaded software late at night to get the internet, and very few have access to this software.

The death toll in Benghazi is growing, almost 80 are dead just in 3 days. It’s getting dirty here and the media coverage is too little. We are not getting the international attention and I am afraid if the Libyan protesters are ignored, this murderer will seal Libya off from the world and ruthlessly kill any protest before they even have the chance to begin.

Yesterday, I left work and I went to Sahat el-Ghadra, where all his thugs were supporting him. They got all kids out of schools and forced them to carry posters of his pictures and everyone to hang the stupid Libyan flag inside their cars and … the number of flags around Tripoli are more than the number of bloody flags you can see in the US.

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

February 18, 2011 at 12:43 pm

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The Autumn of the Patriarch

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Brother Leader

Muammar al-Qaddafi is neither a president nor a king (although he did call himself ‘King of Kings’ at one Arab summit). No, what he is, as well as Colonel, is the Brother Leader, and the Guide of the First of September Great Revolution of the Socialist People’s Libyan Arab State-of-the-Masses (he invented the Arabic word jamahiriyya for the last chunk). I’ll refer to him here as Qaddafi.

Qaddafi is famous for grandstanding – his female bodyguards, his tent, his flamboyant dress. In interviews he growls and flicks his hands. At Arab League meetings he puts his feet on the desk, smokes cigarettes, gets into shouting matches, dramatically swans out. Sometimes he says things worth saying, and he’s often provided a laugh for Arabs who don’t live in Libya.

Qaddafi thinks he’s a lady-killing revolutionary of Guevara proportions and a tyrant of the stature of Mao; hence his Green Book (not to forget his fiction). At the same time, he thinks the people, not he, are in control of Libya’s destiny. And perhaps – we can hope after Tunisia and Egypt – he’s right.

Ideologically he’s swung from Arabism to Islamic socialism to pan-Africanism, but it’s all been hot air. His hosting of a diversity of ‘revolutionary’ groups, including religious cults, reinforced the impression that he was either stupid or insane.

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Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

February 17, 2011 at 1:10 am

Posted in Libya

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