Posted on | May 20, 2014 | 44 Comments
The revolt by Gen. Khalifa Hifter threatens to detonate the long volatile divisions among the multiple militias that dominate Libya amid the weakness of the central government and military. Hifter says he aims to crush Islamists he accuses of seizing control of the country and he appears to have the support of some militias from the eastern half of the country and the western Zintan region. . . .
In the other camp, parliament chief Nouri Abu Sahmein — an Islamist-leaning politician — ordered a powerful umbrella group of mainly Islamist militias known as “Libya’s Central Shield” to mobilize on Monday to defend against Hifter’s forces. The umbrella group is dominated by a militia from Libya’s third largest city, Misrata.
Dozens have been killed, dozens more wounded, and the clashes between General Hifter’s forces and Islamist militias don’t seem to be winding down. The country is thoroughly fragmented, flirting with the failed state label.
It was a war of choice, fought on the credit card, with no real understanding of the country targeted and no clear exit plan, complicated by astonishing incompetence in following up after the dictator was toppled.
Gosh, that sounds so familiar . . .