Thursday, 27 October 2011

Libya: Gaddafi Dead - What now?

By Robert Bechert, CWI,

Independent action by Libyan workers, youth and poor vital to prevent revolution’s derailment

While the defeat of the last major forces defending Gaddafi’s dictatorial and increasingly megalomaniac regime was widely welcomed, the way in which it fell means that clouds now hang over the future of the Libyan revolution. There are now both opportunities and dangers facing the working masses and the youth in Libya. The combination of the absence of an independent workers’ movement, the bitterness resulting from an increasingly brutal civil war and particularly NATO’s intervention, have combined with Libya’s own history and characteristics to produce a complicated political and social situation.
In August we wrote, just after Tripoli’s fall, that it “was greeted with rejoicing by large numbers of, but by no means all, Libyans. Another autocratic ruler, surrounded by his privileged family and cronies, has been overthrown. If this had been purely the result of struggle by the Libyan working masses it would have been widely acclaimed but the direct involvement of imperialism casts a dark shadow over the revolution’s future ...
“While many Libyans are celebrating, socialists have to be clear that, unlike the ousting of Ben Ali in Tunisia and Mubarak in Egypt, the way in which Gaddafi has been removed means that a victory for the Libyan people was also a success for imperialism. Without NATO acting as the rebels’ air force or the soldiers, weapons, organisation and training that NATO and some other countries like the feudal Qatar autocracy supplied, Tripoli would not have fallen to the rebels in the way that it has.” (‘Gaddafi regime crumbles’, 26 August, 2011)
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