By Hanne Nabintu Herland
This analysis documents falsified accusations against Abdullah al-Senussi presented in the media in 2011, and calls for his release from prison inTripoli, Libya.
He is over 70 years old, has health issues and his release will demonstrate good will for national reconciliation as Libya seeks to unify the nation.
Abdullah al-Senussi is the brother-in-law of the late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, married to the sister of Safia Farkash, Fatima Farkash.
“But the coalition is now changed (2011). The US and Britain were fighting extremist Islam and now they are allied with them.”
Since then, the 2016 British House of Commons Foreign Affairs Committee report proved that Gaddafi was not attacking his own people, which al-Senussi is accused of implementing.
Mustafa Abdul Jalil has given an interview, where he admits that he lied about Gaddafi attacking his people, the very accusations that Abdullah al-Senussi has been in prison for many years. Jalil said that they knew that Gaddafi had not ordered the shooting and that Gaddafi’s soldiers had not shot at the population, around 17 February 2011.
He knew this, Jalil says, because he was part of the group of five or six people who played a key role in Gaddafi’s government at the time and were responsible for dealing with the demonstrations. Among the six, Abdullah al-Senussi.
The US Defense Intelligence Agency Report, 2012, retrieved by Judicial Watch in 2014 also demonstrated that Al Qaida in Iraq was Western ally.
Abdullah al-Senussi is, according to Libyan sources, in the Mritiga El Radaar base prison, run by warlord Abed Raouf Kara. Western backed warlords now rule Libya with extreme violence and merciless assaults on the population.
The case for Abdullah al-Senussi
Abdullah al-Senussi was captured in Mauritania in 2012 and is still imprisoned in Libya along with reportedly over 40 other senior Gaddafi era officials.
This includes Gaddafi’s last Prime Minister Baghdadi al-Mahmoudi, years after the NATO military coup in 2011.
The NATO led attack on Libya in 2011 produced a failed state, 150 billion and more in state funds looted, millions of displaced persons, a refugee epidemic that threatens to destabilize Europe, and a Libya under Islamist militia rule.
Family members and members of Senussi’s tribe, the Magerha, has called for Senussi to be released on the basis of medical problems. “The law and medical reports support our legitimate demand,” said one of them.
The Magerha tribe has also issued a statement saying the liberation of Abdullah al-Senussi would “contribute to and consolidate national reconciliation” in a country torn apart by intercommunal conflicts since Gaddafi’s fall. Abuzeid Dorda, Gaddafi’s head of foreign intelligence, who was sentenced at the same time as Abdullah al-Senussi was released from prison in February, 2019. The protesters held up photos of al-Senussi behind bars and placards reading “Freedom to prisoners. Yes to national reconciliation”.
ICC case, Western media support for Al Qaida groups
International demand: Tripoli to release Abdullah al-Senussi:Like Gaddafi’s son, Saif al-Islam, Abdullah al-Senussi was subject to an International Criminal Court arrest warrant for suspected war crimes during the 2011 uprising.
The ICC indictment accuses Abdullah al-Senussi of being an “indirect perpetrator of crimes against humanity of murder and persecution based on political grounds. (Senussi) once instructed by Muammar Gaddafi to implement the plan of deterring and quelling civilian demonstrations against the regime in Benghazi… directly instructed the troops to attack civilians demonstrating in the city,” committed in Benghazi as the uprising began in early 2011.
The ICC overturned the case to the Libyan courts in 2013, where eight other Gaddafi era leaders, including Gaddafi’s son, Saif al-Islam, also received death sentences in 2015. The trial was widely condemned by the United Nations and others as seriously flawed, as the court judges were under heavy pressure from Gaddafi’s enemies who had taken over the country with Western help.
The Western press was, at the time, citing numerous anonymous jihadists’ view on Gaddafi in its articles, remaining highly biased in the coverage of the uprising.
One example, but a quick Google search can give you many more, The Guardian: “Senussi will support Gaddafi until he dies,” said Noman Benotman, a former Libyan jihadi who knows Senussi well. “He’s a brutally honest guy, not at all sophisticated. They all agree on using force to crush the uprising.”
The interim government leader, Mustafa Abdul Jalil, also quickly called for an immediate no-fly zone because “Gaddafi is attacking the people from the air”. He asserted that Gaddafi himself was responsible for all of the attacks perpetrated in Libya. By then, Western politicians, such as Norwegian Jonas Gahr Støre, had been all over the place stating that the Arab Spring uprisings would not lead to the rise of Al Qaida affiliated groups.
President Barack Obama commented at the time that “military fighter jets and helicopters bombed innocent people who had no chance to defend themselves against the airstrikes”. He said that “water supplies were cut off in Misurata, which affected hundreds of thousands of people”. Nevertheless, in early March, the Pentagon had already denied that such attacks had happened.
US Defense Secretary Robert Gates was asked whether they had found evidence that there had been airstrikes, to which he replied “we’ve seen the media reports, but have found nothing to confirm them”. Still the newspapers continued to write as if the rumors were true.
In March 2011, UN Resolution 1973 was approved by the UN Security Council. It established a no-fly zone based on information later proven as false, claiming that Muammar Gaddafi attacked his own people, bombed hospitals and so on. Professor at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs, Alan J. Kuperman, has since stated that “Gaddafi never threatened civilian massacre in Benghazi, as Obama alleged”.
Killing Gaddafi and family members
International demand: Tripoli to release Abdullah al-Senussi: The Libya war public demonstration of the Western tactic to go after a leader by killing his family, children and grandchildren, in violation of all International Law and the Geneva convention. Numerous Gaddafi family members were killed in the NATO war 2011, among them the husband and children of Aisha Gaddafi, his son Muattasim, Khamis og Saif al-Arab.
One of Gaddafi’s sons, Saadi al-Gaddafi is still in prison even if the courts acquitted him.
Hannibal Gaddafi is still incarcerated in Lebanon. Gaddafi’s wife, Safia Farkash and daugher, Aisha Gaddafi still unable to use their frozen bank accounts or to travel. Since when was it a crime to be a president’s wife? Or daughter? Today it is.
One may safely say that the biased media coverage has since backfired. Only 30 % of the Western public now believe to be true what they read in the newspapers. Over 90% of the American media is owned by only six global companies, it is very easy to influence public opinion.
“No mercy will be shown,” Gaddafi said in his speech, which was directed at the rebels and published on 17 March. The New York Times also confirmed in an article that Libya’s leader offered amnesty to any rebel that “put down their weapons”. Gaddafi even promised them a chance to flee the country via Egypt in order to prevent continued battles. Data from Human Rights Watch confirms this, only 3% of the wounded from the Gaddafi retaliation were women.
The UK Report 2016 documented Gaddafi did not attack civilians
International demand: Tripoli to release Abdullah al-Senussi:Muammar Gaddafi led Libya with a strong centralized organization, imprisoning people without charge or trial, supporting guerrilla movements and leading a complex country with diverse African ethnic minorities that had historically been at each other’s throats.
Yet, in August, 2016, the British House of Commons Foreign Affairs Committee report stated that the premise for the intervention in Libya’s domestic affairs, based on accusations of “Gaddafi murdering his own people” and “genocide in Libya”, was a lie propounded by Western and Gulf State media.
The report also highlighted the important role of exiled Libyans, many of whom belonged to Al Qaida affiliated groups who were Gaddafi’s enemies number one. The UK Report came to the very same conclusion stated by Abdullah al-Senussi in the TV interview from 2011, that the rebels included significant Islamist elements:
The Foreign Affairs Committee concludes that the British government “failed to identify that the threat to civilians was overstated and that the rebels included a significant Islamist element.”
- Qaddafi was not planning to massacre civilians. This myth was exaggerated by rebels and Western governments, which based their intervention on little intelligence.
- The threat of Islamist extremists, which had a large influence in the uprising, was ignored — and the NATO bombing made this threat even worse, giving ISIS a base in North Africa.
- France, which initiated the military intervention, was motivated by economic and political interests, not humanitarian ones.
- The uprising — which was violent, not peaceful — would likely not have been successful were it not for foreign military intervention and aid. Foreign media outlets, particularly Qatar’s Al Jazeera and Saudi Arabia’s Al Arabiya, also spread unsubstantiated rumors about Qaddafi and the Libyan government.
- The NATO bombing plunged Libya into a humanitarian disaster, killing thousands of people and displacing hundreds of thousands more, transforming Libya from the African country with the highest standard of living into a war-torn failed state.
Professor at King’s College in London, George Joffé, confirms in the UK report that President Sarkozy’s administration was heavily influenced by exiled Libyans with close contacts in the French intellectual milieu (Bernard Henri-Lévy was heavily involved), working to pull off a coup d’état in Libya.
The British report concludes by saying that exiled Libyans, for various reasons, knowingly exaggerated the likelihood of “genocide in Libya” in order to persuade the West to intervene, which it did. Maybe Western leaders eventually will explain why the Western-backed government in Tripoli continues to hold thousands of Gaddafi loyalists prisoner without charge or trial in Libya.
The Libyan courts’ and the ICC accusations against Abdullah al-Senussi: ..”once instructed by Muammar Gaddafi to implement the plan of deterring and quelling civilian demonstrations against the regime in Benghazi… directly instructed the troops to attack civilians demonstrating in the city,” was documented as false, according the the UK Commons report and numerous others.
Abdullah al-Senussi is right in stating Gaddafi worked with CIA
Furthermore, Abdullah al-Senussi was right in stating that Libya prior to 2011, worked closely with the CIA and US authorities and Western intelligence to take control over Sunni Muslim terrorist groups in the region such as al-Qaeda.
Gaddafi was known for being al-Qaeda’s arch enemy; they had attempted to take his life on multiple occasions. Lawrence Wright gives a good account of this in The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11. In 2007 Muammar Gaddafi received praise from President George Bush for his willingness to commit to reforms. Condoleezza Rice praised Libya for the country’s active strides to combat al-Qaeda terrorism and its strong cooperation with the United States.
When the Gaddafi regime fell, it was then al-Qaeda-affiliated leaders such as the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group commander, Abdulhakim Belhadj—a man with a long history of ties to terrorist groups in Afghanistan, Libya and other places—who formed the nucleus of Western-backed Libyan leaders which follow the same ideology as al-Qaradawi, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Within a few years, Belhadj allegedly became one of Africa’s richest men with a worth of more than USD 19 billion. And in 2015, Belhadj —John McCain’s good friend—was reportedly the leader of ISIS in Libya.
Furthermore, the Judicial Watch retrieved DIA report from 2012 demonstrated who was allied with who in the Syria war. The Report came from the US Defense Intelligence. For years, Judicial Watch has sued the US government and State Department for classified documents, as an extensive amount of documents have been kept secret that Judicial Watch felt should be public.
One of these was the DIA report, dated August 12th, 2012, long before ISIS surfaced. The situation in Syria is herein defined “The Salafist, the Muslim Brotherhood, the Al Qaida in Iraq are the major forces driving the insurgency in Syria. The West, Golf countries and Turkey support the opposition, while Russia, China and Iran support the regime.” Many have commented on the hypocrisy: Why pretend that these are not our allies?
Interim Government leader Abdul Jalil admitted to lies about Gaddafi uprising
International demand: Tripoli to release Abdullah al-Senussi: In addition, then leader of the Western Libyan Interim Government, Abdul Jalil, has openly admitted that the allegations against Gaddafi attacking his people were false.
As stated above, Mustafa Abdul Jalil was very active in 2011, informing Western media about the “Gaddafi attack”. He spoke in a number of interviews on this topic and was widely cited in the leading mainstream outlets.
In one, Jalil says that “we want a no-fly zone, and a naval blockade. Gaddafi has been using his air force and navy to destroy the country and all the cities. All we want is to have the international community level the playing field”. Statements like this, as well as letters and documents with the same message, were absolutely instrumental in NATO’s decision to attack.
The same man—Jalil—gave an interview with Libya Channel One, uploaded to YouTube in May, 2014, where he admits that he lied about Gaddafi attacking his people, the very accusations that Abdullah al-Senussi has been in prison for many years now. Jalil said that they knew the whole time that Gaddafi had not ordered the shooting and that Gaddafi’s soldiers had not shot at the population on those fateful days, around 17 February 2011.
He knew this, Jalil says, because he was part of the group of five or six people who played a key role in Gaddafi’s government at the time and were responsible for dealing with the demonstrations.
He explains that the meetings were terribly intense, with raucous discussions about how they should be addressed. In the interview, Abdul Jalil confirms—in Arabic—that everyone in the group agreed that it was crucial to deal with the demonstrations without the use of force.
Those in attendance were himself, Libya’s Director of Military Intelligence Abdallah al-Senussi, Interior Minister Abdel-Fatah Younis, Libya’s Chief of Police Tohah Michaled and Director of Foreign Military Intelligence Abuzed Dorda.
Abdullah al-Senussi was, to repeat, present in the government meetings regarding how to react to the uprisings. Mustafa Abdul Jalil confirms that he and al-Senussi agreed in the meetings that it was crucial to deal with the demonstrations without the use of force.
Jalil confirms in the interview in Arabic, that they agreed to allow the protesters to set things on fire in the streets, burn up and destroy valuable items, cars and so on without Gaddafi’s forces intervening and using force. They considered this to be the best method to get the protester’s rage and fury to subside.
This admitted Mustafa Abdul Jalil, the same man who spread accusations against Gaddafi all over the world, which contributed to the legitimization of the 2011 NATO attack. Four years later, he says the exact opposite on Libyan Arab TV.
There are numerous humanitarian pleas, also including from the UN, imploring the international community to take responsibility for the destruction of Libya that NATO instigated in 2011. It is time Abdullah al-Senussi, who is over 70 years old, be released from prison so that he may return home to his tribe and his family.
Hanne Nabintu Herland – Founder of The Herland Report, Historian of comparative religions, author, TV producer
The Herland Report News, Independent Cultural Analysis
Herland Report TV Channel on Youtube, Interviews with Leading Intellectuals
Email – [email protected]