The 2011 armed conflict in Libya was fought between forces loyal to Colonel Muammar Gaddafi and those seeking to oust his government. The war was preceded by skirmishes and protests in Benghazi beginning on Tuesday the 15th of February 2011.
Within days of the conflict beginning the Guardian began publishing pro interventionist and overtly aggressive editorials.
“The quicker Muammar Gaddafi falls, the better……. a no-fly zone should become an option. Lord Owen was therefore right to say that military preparations should be made”
“American and other western forces in the Mediterranean area, working with military units from Arab countries, could probably destroy the Gaddafi family’s ramshackle legions in about the same amount of time it took over 150 years ago. When sniper fire rakes crowds outside mosques and when ill-armed fighters face machine guns, the temptation to reach out for a quick military solution is strong.”
“The emerging compromise may be that for a few more days the current rules of engagement, allowing ground attacks on military assets not directly or actively threatening civilians, will continue in force but then a narrower interpretation will prevail. That gives Nato planes a slender window to tip the military balance further against Gaddafi.”
During the conflict the Guardian also seemed very eager to report that Gaddafi was issuing Viagra to his soldiers so they could commit mass rape against his opponents.
This ridiculous claim which lacked any evidence whatsoever was then refuted by major activist groups – as stated on Wikipedia.
Amnesty international, Human Rights Watch and Doctors Without Borders failed to find first-hand evidence that mass rapes were occurring, this was confirmed by the UN’s investigator, M. Cherif Bassiouni.
I cannot find any evidence that the Guardian bothered to report the findings of Amnesty international, Human Rights Watch, Doctors Without Borders and the UN investigator.
One of the major selling points of the Libyan intervention was the issue that Gaddafi used airstrikes on his population. This rumor was repeated over and over (like the claims of mass rape) by the mainstream media but I have yet to see any compelling evidence that it actually happened. Please send me any information if I am mistaken. There is no video evidence anywhere online and until there is I have to keep an open mind. According to a Russian news network the Russian Military confirmed that “Airstrikes in Libya did not take place”. If airstrikes are such a deciding factor in whether or not a government decides to go to war – surely some evidence for the general public would be beneficial.
Another biased attribute of the Guardians reporting on Libya was the downplaying or ignoring of atrocities committed by the NATO backed rebels. As stated on a previous blog post…
“The UK Government and media outlets downplayed and largely ignored the brutalization of black communities during the Libyan conflict and in its aftermath reports of ethnic cleansing were conveniently swept under the carpet.”
The examples of propaganda and media bias during this bloody conflict are many. The action on the ground unfolded so quickly that before investigations into what was true and what was false could even begin – NATO had already started its bombing campaign and civilians were being killed in the name of ‘humanitarianism’.
It speaks volumes that the ongoing violence in Libya is now barely reported by the Guardian. During the conflict, major incidents were treated to rolling news coverage and headlines on the home page but ever since the forced regime change the faux concern has shifted to the citizens of Syria, almost as if to imply – job done – on to the next.
It is very important to note that there were some articles on the Guardian website opposing intervention in Libya but the pro interventionist propaganda had already begun. By promoting a conversation on the positives and negatives of war – war itself becomes rationalized, when the very idea of such carnage should be opposed at every single level. We live in an apathetic world where powerful, Western Governments have been able to destroy entire countries based on deceit and a complete lack of accountability. For every anti war campaigner working against the tide there seems to be a well paid war apologist with column inches to fill. We must hold our mainstream media to account whenever it prints pro war commentary and any form of propaganda.
For further reading on mainstream media propaganda during the Libyan conflict, please visit the following links >