Why The New York Times Ignored Libya Ethnic Cleansing

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While the U.S. administration and the great newspaper may not hold dear the lives of Libyans and Black people; millions of Black people all over the world do, as does The Black Star News.

[Black Star News Editorial]

Not Genocide If "Our Team" Commits the Crime

When a major newspaper supports so-called "rebels," even though the signs are abundant from the very beginning that they comprise sadistic killers, radical Islamists, and anti-Black racists, what does it do at the end of the day, when the evidence can't be hidden anymore that the so-called "liberators" are in fact genocidal killers?

There are two options. To admit a grievous error in supporting rebels that commit mass crimes: or choose to continue spinning stories and ignoring atrocities committed by the anointed false liberators.

That's the quandary that The New York Times now faces; the newspaper has chosen the latter approach as its solution.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is today in Libya, promising "support" for a government that does not yet exist; even, as The Wall Street Journal has reported that the "rebels" have begun turning their guns against each other and even as they continue to target Black Libyans. Inhumane acts posted online by the Western-backed victors include forcing captured soldiers to eat the carcass of other dismembered captives. The military commander of Tripoli today, Abdelhakim Belhadj, is an ex al-Qaeda fighter. Thanks to NATO he's the most powerful Libyan.

In an article today, The New York Times is disingenuous when it tries to blame the continuing attacks on Black Libyans and other inter-ethnic fighting, not on the NATO-backed insurgents who are actually committing the atrocities, but as some sort of residual of Muammar al-Quathafi's legacy. In a bit of a desperate stretch, The Times reports: "The question of loyalty to the old government has fueled a series of tribal, racial and ethnic disputes, pitting Arab villages against Berber hamlets, militias from the mountains against those from the coast and lighter-skinned Libyans against their black neighbors. The new authorities have presided over their own divisive policies, failing to curb harassment and violence against black people in the territory they control or to rein in their militiamen, some of whom have looted or burned loyalist homes and mimicked the techniques of the former government by detaining suspects arbitrarily and torturing prisoners."

This would make sense if the violence by the "rebels" was something new.

The New York Times should remember Gen. Colin Powell's caution to George W. Bush before the invasion of Iraq, which he had opposed: "If you break it; you own it." The New York Times heavily promoted the war of aggression on Libya; one might even argue that it pushed the Obama Administration's hands. The Times and the White House own the broken country.

The Times published numerous editorials promoting intervention and even urged the Obama Administration to ignore the War Powers Act and to engage U.S. military assets in what was an illegal war from the American position. The New York Times knew that Resolution 1973 was being abused and that the NATO planes acted as air forces for the insurgency. The Times totally ignored gross human rights abuses by the insurgents, even though the supposed mission for the intervention was to protect civilians from abuses by all combatants.

The New York Times' editorial writers displayed a diabolical level of racism, totally ignoring the massive NATO bombardments, which doubtless the editorial writers must have known was killing hundreds of Libyan civilians just based on the frequency and intensity alone. In the city of Zlitan alone, more than 85 civilians were reported to have been killed. It's inconceivable that the people in charge of writing editorials at The New York Times would have slept peacefully at night, had such a criminally negligent bombardment campaign by NATO been conducted on a non-African country in this, the 21st Century.

The Times outdid even The Wall Street Journal, the supposedly right wing newspaper, with its rabid warmongering. There must be some soul searching if the editorial writers posses an iota of human compassion.

Yet, not a single editorial was published by The New York Times calling for a pause or cessation of hostilities and the massive bombardment. In fact, a Google search will reveal numerous editorials by the Times' seemingly depraved editorial writers, urging increased bombardments, knowing full well that civilians would be killed; perhaps taking some comfort in the knowledge that the civilian victims were certainly not Europeans.

The evidence was already available on YouTube, posted by the insurgents themselves in Benghazi, of lynching and beheadings of suspected Muammar al-Quathafi supporters; and the beheadings of Black Libyans and immigrants from other African countries working in Libya. This was the time that the Times, and media organizations such as the BBC and CNN started exaggerating the role of "mercenaries" on al-Quathafi's side; when in fact, the mercenaries were from Qatar, as recent reports in The Wall Street Journal show.

The British and French, also in violation of the United Nations embargo had sent military "advisers." The French also violated Resolution 1970 by air dropping weapons on Western Libya. And the international community still expects North Korea or Iran to respect any United Nations Resolutions? Washington, London and Paris made a mockery of the U.N. and permanently damaged its credibility.

Ethnic cleansing was carried out in Libya and it continues. This is a war crime and crime against humanity. The great newspaper has not called for an investigation and prosecution since it would mean the arrest of the leaders of the "rebels" supported by The New York Times. The Libya conflict exposed The New York Times' as a partisan organization that in fact works hand-in-hand with the United States administration. At least in the case of the old Soviet PRAVDA; the whole world knew that it was created for propaganda. There was no pretence about "objectivity."

The New York Times ignored the massacre of Black Libyans in the city of Misurata by light-skinned Libyans, assisted by NATO's bombardments. This ethnic cleansing was first reported, ironically by Rupert Murdoch's Wall Street Journal, on June 21. The Journal reported at the time that a Misurata neighborhood which had originally been 4/5 Black, was completely emptied of its Black population. Ominously, The Journal also reported that there was a bounty for Black Libyans.

The ethnic cleansing was carried out by the "Brigade for Purging Slaves, black skin" leaving no doubt as to intent; this is critical when determining crimes of genocide. The Journal even quoted some commanders by name. The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Luis Moreno Ocampo, who was quick to hold a press conference about the Viagra rapes hoax, has yet to ask for the indictment of the commanders of the "Brigade for Purging Slaves, black skin."

Had The Wall Street Journal not broken ranks with other corporate media, the world may never have known about the ethnic cleansing campaign by the NATO-and New York Times backed insurgents.

It was again The Wall Street Journal that first reported, on September 13, that the city of Tawargha, populated by 35,000 Black Libyans, had been completely depopulated by the insurgents from Misurata. The Wall Street Journal also reported that the insurgents looted the belongings of the Tawargans, set their homes on fire, and on the walls of the buildings scrawled the words "slaves" and "Negros."

The New York Times was late on the scene, only reporting on the ethnic cleansing of Tawargha on September 23. Even then, the newspaper still seemed to rationalize this war crime; alluding to collective guilt and responsibility. In other words, since Black Libyans had supported al-Quathafi, all of them, including women and children, probably deserved what they got.

The Times has yet to report on the whereabouts of the 35,000 Black Libyans from Tawargha This great newspaper has not dwelt on this crime. Guilt? Callous disregard? Complicity by silence? Only the editorial writers at the great newspaper know.

Complicity is widely shared. Not even the first African American president of the United States, Barack Obama, has condemned the targeted killings of Black Libyans. Not a word of condemnation from Hillary Clinton, Secretary of State, who is in Tripoli today. Nothing from United Nations Secretary General Ban ki-Moon and the ICC's Ocampo.

The only elected official in the U.S. brave enough to denounce the ethnic cleansing, call it genocide, and demand for an investigation, was Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr.

The African Union (AU) condemned the targeted attacks on Black people. The AU's statement was treated with contempt by the U.S. and the Times; in the same way in which the AU's peace proposal, that called for a cease fire, creation of constitution, and elections monitored by the international community, was disregarded. The White House, France, and NATO had to have their way.

Yet the Libya war did teach us all one important and enduring lesson. The days when major corporate media could hide or suppress the news, including stories about ethnic cleansing, are over.

Online media outlets --and The Wall Street Journal by breaking ranks-- allowed the story of the targeted killing of Black Libyans and migrant workers from elsewhere in Africa to be exposed.

The regime in Tripoli is discredited even as Clinton embraces it with her public relations campaign visit. While the U.S. administration and the great newspaper may not hold dear the lives of Libyans and Black people; millions of Black people all over the world do, as does The Black Star News.

Editor's Note added October, 21:

Now that Muammar al-Quathafi has been deposed and killed as The New York Times
advocated for, it's time for readers to revisit the ethnic cleansing of Black Libyans
campaign carried out by the U.S.- and NATO-backed NTC insurgents. Ethnic cleansing is a war crime and crime against humanity by any
definition. PLEASE call (212) 556-1234 ( hit "0" to get operator) and
ask for Joe Kahn, The New York Times' foreign news editor and call back and then
ask for
Arthur Sulzberger, the publisher. Ask them both when The New
York Times
will (1) do follow up stories on the ethnic cleansing of Black Libyans and (2)
when the newspaper plans to write editorials denouncing the ethnic cleansing and calling for an investigation by the United Nations and
investigation and prosecution by the International Criminal Court.


milton@blackstarnews.com
"Speaking Truth To Empower."

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