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Why are the Libyan Rebels seeking Israel's support?

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Administrator's Note: This action as well as other evidences from the rebels should tell us who is really behind them. 

As mediation and ceasefire initiatives such as the Road Map proposed by the African Union via South Africa's president Jacob Zuma failed, a French writer, Bernard Henri Levy announced that he delivered a message on Thursday from Libyan rebel leaders to Israel's Prime Minister, saying they would seek diplomatic ties with the country if they came to power.

This move, which is set to be ambivalently received in the Muslim world,  also breaks the National Transitional  Council from the Gaddafi regime, which does not have any diplomatic relations with Israel. Also it comes as the rebels are slowly gaining advantages over Gaddafi. In the last few days  they have progressed on the battlefield while the Libyan leader's regime is facing an increase in defections and is becoming increasingly isolated internationally, especially after last week when Russia shifted its position and called on Gadaffi to step down.

The latest high-profile defection to further demoralise the regime was that of Shukri Ghanem, the regime's oil minister and former prime minister. He was followed by the defection of eight Libyan army officers, including five generals, who were part of a wider group of 120 military personnel that defected in recent days.

In Africa, five other countries do not formally acknowledge Israel  as a state or have diplomatic relations with it. They are Algeria, Comoros, Djibouti, Somalia and Sudan, while in the Middle East Iraq, Lebannon, Kuwauit, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Yemen and the United Arab Emirate share the same position.

So why are the rebels interested in obtaining Israel's support, and affirm they will acknowledge the existence of Israel as a state as soon as they gain power?

Well, according to Levi "The main point was that the future Libyan regime would be moderate and anti-terrorist and will be concerned with justice for the Palestinians and security for Israel,"

It seems that the move will infuriate Gaddafi, not because of the new born relationship between the rebels and Israel but rather because it assumes the transitional council will, no matter what, gain control of the state.

Interestingly, the council's stance and newly found  interest in playing a major role in the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict comes just after the International Criminal Court chief prosecutor, Luis Moreno Occampo revealed  this week that following accusations of arbitrary imprisonment and ill treatment of foreign workers by the rebels fighters, he was "investigating reports of unlawful arrest, mistreatment and killing" of sub-Saharan African civilians wrongly perceived to be mercenaries.

Also, as members of the fighters on the ground were accused of having ties with Al-Qaeda, it seems that expressing support for (and gaining support from) Israel will help the council steer away from accusations of having links with terrorist movements or of harbouring Muslims fundamentalists, who are not generally noted for their love of Israel.

If the new regime (if it arrives) wishes to be taken seriously by Western countries and become a successful  intermediate between Israel and Palestine, then recognition of Israel would give it some initial international brownie points by putting it firmly on the international geopolitical map in a region where the West and Israel are actively seeking new allies.

Of course another possibility is that after the surge of negative reports in the last few days the regime felt it had to take a very public stand to reassure Western liberal democracies of its dedication to democracy but also to their ideals and values.

While only time will tell us what really motivated the move, the conflict is still on-going.

Today, the Libyan government tried to play down the significance of yesterday's defection of the country's oil minister Shukri Ghanem,

While Libyan officials had previously insisted that Mr Ghanem was on an official trip to Tunisia, Europe and Egypt, a government spokesman was forced to dismiss Mr Ghanem's departure was a blow to the regime.

"This is a country, a state, a government, not just one person," Mussa Ibrahim told reporters and insisted Libya would be still represented at the meeting of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) in Vienna on June 8. "I don't have a name yet but we'll have somebody."

An executive with the state-owned National Oil Corporation, Mosbah Ali Matoug, took Mr Ghanem's place today at a meeting of the Gas Exporting Countries Forum in Cairo.

Meanwhile in rebel-held eastern Libya, an explosion damaged a hotel used by rebels and foreigners in Benghazi, wounding one person while 270 people, who were fleeing the country, went missing after a fishing boat carrying migrants from Libya to Italy broke down just off the Tunisian coast.

According to a state run agency, 570 people were rescued and seven people injured, and passengers were mainly said to be migrants from Africa and Asia who planned to enter Italy illegally.


A. Mustafa Ali
+3 #1 A. Mustafa Ali 2011-06-05 20:53

Personally, I view the move by the so-called rebels as lacking in significance. There are much larger challenges in Libya and across the middle east that have nothing to do with disregarding or accepting the existence of the state of Israel. The fact is being drawn into an ever-expanding vision of a Zionist state is threatening. However, this becomes less and less a viable option for the Israeli leadership if African and Arab leaders can develop economically viable infrastructure, technology, and industry that create jobs and opportunities for their people. Does the existence or the prescence of the state Israel prevent any of those options? Developing social systems that represent the Islamic principles of justice, equity, human dignity, and freedom may be a viable step to ensuring a brighter future for the people of the region. Does the existence or the prescence of the state Israel prevent any of those options? Perhaps, we are wasting to much time on the existence of the state of Israel--they exist and Insha-Allah will exist into the forseeable future. Collaboration of states to enhance their global social, political, economic, and moral role capable of leading the world into a peaceful, productive, and dynamic future may be possible. Does the existence or the prescence of the state Israel prevent any of those options?

I am just posing the question! Sheik may be correct about the so-called Arab awakening--but are we totally powerless to shape our collective destiny?

+2 #2 Nashid 2011-06-06 05:40
Wa Alaikum As Salaam,

Very interesting and insightful comments brother Mustafa. I think the alignment of the rebels with Israel especially after they have been visited by senators Lieberman and McCain as well as British Zionist leaders is significant more to show who is behind them and whose tune they will dance to rather than a true expression of freedom.

You are so correct abut the irrelevance of recognizing Israel to the enhancement of global, social, political, economic, and moral roles for the people of Libya and the Arab world. This recognition is only symbolic to show who are the masters the new rebel government will bow to. The following article is worth checking out because it gives great details regarding who is really behind the Libyan rebels:

Libya: The Zionist Dragon and The Drums of War
#3 JackieG 2011-06-23 06:15
Putin is going to turn Tel Aviv and Haifa into a sheet of glass.
And it wont be long now!
Fredrick Toben
+2 #4 Fredrick Toben 2011-06-30 14:58
Well analyzed - and if one recalls that Israel has a security contract with Nigeria, and recently there was a 'terrorist' explosion in Nigeria, then it's clear what is happening and who is behind such destabilising activity.

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