Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Time for The United States to return the $30 billion seized to the Libyan people

    Guards struggling to control crowds at the Tunisian border.

On February 25 2011, the U.S. Treasury has frozen $30 billion in cash and securities of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi and his government in what amounts to the largest ever such U.S. action

The freeze was a result of President Barack Obama’s executive order issued Feb. 25 2011.

The freezing of Libyan assets in the U.S. was part of the Obama administration’s effort to pressure Gaddafi to step down. 

After NATO’s intervention in 2011, Libya is now a failed state and its economy is in shambles, with hundreds of thousands of Libyans struggling for life and fleeing the country by boat towards Italy by the thousands.

Such a mass migration is sparking Europe's far right xenophobic groups who aren't aware the U.S. Government caused such a chaos because of not only the bombing of  the country but also of this huge asset freezing 

The situation is now a humanitarian emergency and I think that time has come for the United States Government to return those funds to the Libyan people who not only are in desperate need but because it's their money.  

In 1967 Colonel Gaddafi inherited one of the poorest nations in Africa; however, by the time he was assassinated, Gaddafi had turned Libya into Africa’s wealthiest nation. Libya had the highest GDP per capita and life expectancy on the continent. Less people lived below the poverty line than in the Netherlands.

For over 40 years, Gaddafi promoted economic democracy and used the nationalized oil wealth to sustain progressive social welfare programs for all Libyans. Under Gaddafi’s rule, Libyans enjoyed not only free health-care and free education, but also free electricity and interest-free loans. 

Now thanks to NATO’s intervention the health-care sector completely collapsed, institutions of higher education across the country are shut down and black outs are a common occurrence in once thriving Tripoli.

One group that has suffered immensely from NATO’s bombing campaign is the nation’s women. Unlike many other Arab nations, women in Gaddafi’s Libya had the right to education, hold jobs, divorce, hold property and have an income. 

The United Nations Human Rights Council praised Gaddafi for his promotion of women’s rights.

When the colonel seized power in 1969, few women went to university. In 2011 more than half of Libya’s university students were women. One of  the first laws Gaddafi passed in 1970 was an equal pay for equal work law.

Nowadays, the new “democratic” Libyan regime is clamping down on women’s rights. The new ruling tribes are tied to traditions that are strongly patriarchal. Also, the chaotic nature of post intervention Libyan politics has allowed free reign to extremist Islamic forces that see gender equality as a Western perversion.

Nonetheless, three years ago, NATO declared that the mission in Libya had been “one of the most successful in NATO history.” 

Now it's time for America to do the right thing and return the $30 billion to the Libyan people.
That money is property of the Libyan people and they're desperately in need of it.

E Pluribus Unum 

Writing Credits: Garikai Chengu