US Evacuates Libya Embassy Following Biggest Local Violence Since Gadhafi Ouster

Tyler Durden's picture

The middle east is burning again: first it was the fascinating ascent of the brutal Al-Qaeda spinoff ISIS, creating its own Caliphate in northern Iraq and in the process taking over a third of Syrian territory as well as all of its oil infrastructure. Then, the latest iteration of the Israel vs Gaza conflict has now claimed over 1000 lives and is dragging virtually all neighboring countries into it as well. And the cherry on top is that the Libyan "liberation" by the US has just gone full circle, as the country is is now witnessing one of its worst spasms of violence since Gadhafi’s ouster. End result: nearly two years after the deadly attack on the US embassy in Benghazi, moments ago the US once again shuttered its embassy in Libya, this time in Tripoli, evacuating more than 150 Americans to Tunisia.  This is happening just 24 hours after the US Secretary of State was literally next door in Egypt, assuring the region that peace and stability are just around the corner.

From NBC:

More than 150 Americans have been evacuated from the U.S. embassy in Tripoli, Libya, amid spiraling militant violence aimed at the Libyan government. "The U.S. together with other countries have decided that because of the freewheeling militia violence that is taking place particularly around the embassy ... it presents a real risk to our personnel," Secretary of State John Kerry told reporters during a trip to France.

 

American officials told NBC News that the 158 Americans, including 80 heavily armed U.S. Marines, left the embassy compound early Saturday in a caravan of SUV's and buses and drove west toward neighboring Tunisia. Besides the Marines who were the embassy’s security force, the caravan was also protected overhead by two American F-16 fighter jets and unmanned drones that shadowed the group on their drive.

 

At least two American warships, a guided-missile destroyer, the USS Ross and a guided-missile cruiser, the USS Vella Gulf, were nearby in the Mediterranean in case additional military protection was needed, officials told NBC News.

 

While there appeared to be no direct threat of an attack against the embassy, the rising violence in Libya recently prevented delivery of food and other vital supplies to the embassy over roads now largely controlled or threatened by rebel militant forces, the officials added.

While it needs no reminding, CBS does so nonetheless, that  "the move marks the second time in a little more than three years that Washington has closed its embassy in Libya. In Feb. 2011, the embassy suspended operations amid the uprising that eventually toppled longtime leader Moammar Gadhafi. After the formation of a transitional government in July, 2011, the embassy reopened in September. Gadhafi was killed in October of 2011."

The Obama administration has been particularly sensitive about security of U.S. government employees in Libya since the Sept. 11, 2012, attack on the U.S. mission in the country’s second largest city of Benghazi that killed ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans. The administration is still fending off criticism from Republicans and others that it did not either enhance security in Benghazi or evacuate the mission due to rising violence in that city in the months prior to the attack.

 

The Benghazi mission was abandoned after that attack and never reopened. The embassy In Tripoli has been operating with reduced staff since but has remained open even as the violence intensified.

But wait, didn't Brent drop recently because the political situation in Libya was getting better? Recall from Goldman:

On July 2, federalist rebels handed the central oil terminals of Ras Lanuf and Es Sider back to the Libyan government, with a combined capacity of 560 thousand barrels per day. The government lifted the force majeure on July 6, allowing the NOC to start marketing crude from the ports. This development points to a potential sharp ramp-up in Libyan oil production from its current 320 thousand barrels per day level as well as a ramp-up in exports that have been erratic so far this year. This has led to a decline in crude oil prices, with Brent prices down nearly $2.00/bbl since Reuters first reported this deal and currently trading near $110/bbl, although the lack of further deterioration in Iraq, where exports remain undisrupted, has also contributed to the broader decline in prices over the past two weeks.

 

 

Apparently not.

In Tripoli, the militias are fighting mostly for control of the airport. They are on the government’s payroll since authorities have depended on them to restore order.

 

The U.S. is just latest in a number of countries to have closed down their diplomatic operations in Libya. Turkey on Friday announced that it had closed down its embassy and militia clashes in Benghazi have prompted the United Nations, aid groups and foreign envoys to leave.

 

In Tripoli, clashes near the international airport have forced residents to evacuate their homes nearby after they were hit by shells. On Friday, the official Libyan news agency LANA reported that explosions were heard early in the day near the airport area and continued into the afternoon.

 

The battle in Tripoli began earlier this month when Islamist-led militias — mostly from the western city of Misrata — launched a surprise assault on the airport, under control of rival militias from the western mountain town of Zintan. On Monday, a $113 million Airbus A330 passenger jet for Libya’s state-owned Afriqiyah Airways was destroyed in the fighting.

 

The rival militias, made up largely of former anti-Gadhafi rebels, have forced a weeklong closure of gas stations and government offices. In recent days, armed men have attacked vehicles carrying money from the Central Bank to local banks, forcing their closure.

 

Libyan government officials and activists have increasingly been targeted in the violence. Gunmen kidnapped two lawmakers in the western suburbs of Tripoli a week ago and on Friday armed men abducted Abdel-Moaz Banoun, a well-known Libyan political activist in Tripoli, according to his father.

Finally, there is of course the obligatory spin:

Full statement from the State Department on the evacuation:

Due to the ongoing violence resulting from clashes between Libyan militias in the immediate vicinity of the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli, we have temporarily relocated all of our personnel out of Libya.

 

We are committed to supporting the Libyan people during this challenging time, and are currently exploring options for a permanent return to Tripoli as soon as the security situation on the ground improves. In the interim, staff will operate from Washington and other posts in the region.

 

Securing our facilities and ensuring the safety of our personnel are top Department priorities, and we did not make this decision lightly. Security has to come first. Regrettably, we had to take this step because the location of our embassy is in very close proximity to intense fighting and ongoing violence between armed Libyan factions.

 

This relocation was done over land, with our personnel arriving in Tunisia this morning, and traveling onward from there. We are grateful to the Government of Tunisia for its cooperation and support.

 

We will continue to engage all Libyans and the international community to seek a peaceful resolution to the current conflict and to advance Libya’s democratic transition. We reiterate that Libyans must immediately cease hostilities and begin negotiations to resolve their grievances. We join the international community in calling on all Libyans to respect the will of the people, including the authority of the recently-elected Council of Representatives, and to reject the use of violence to affect political processes. Many brave Libyans sacrificed to advance their country toward a more secure and prosperous future. We continue to stand solidly by the Libyan people as they endeavor to do so.

Turns out "it does make a difference after all."

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Kirk2NCC1701's picture

Why not evacuate it for good?

BigJim's picture

You mean Libyan embassy staff aren't expendable?

nmewn's picture

What difference does the staff make!?!? ;-)

icanhasbailout's picture

well, they wrecked Libya and threw it into utter chaos, which now threatens their own lives

 

if that ain't difference-making, what is?

nmewn's picture

Nonsense, we have it on the "best of authority" that the chaos was caused by a youtube video ;-)

Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

http://shoebat.com/2014/06/17/company-botched-obamacare-website-tied-ben...

n a SHOCKING discovery, CGI Federal – the Canadian Company that built the Obamacare website – appears to have a connection to the “Innocence of Muslims” video the Obama administration blamed for the Benghazi attacks.

And here’s how it was done:

The evidence is well established that in 2010, CGI acquired Stanley Associates, which “provides services to the U.S. federal civilian, defense and intelligence agencies”. [1]

When the crudely produced video “Innocence of Muslims” was posted to a YouTube it needed a boost, especially since it was posted by someone no one had ever heard of and who had only uploaded two videos – that were basically the same.

Well, a YouTube channel known as NewsPoliticsNow3 (NPN3) has been connected to Stanley Associates, the service provider for U.S. defense and “intelligence”.

...

But what difference does it make?

 

nmewn's picture

lol...incredible.

Produce the video, market the video and then claim the video is what caused it.

Arius's picture

Kerry is going to be a peace maker between palestinians and israelis ... fix your peace first!

Save_America1st's picture

Doesn't this all make sense? 

Government needs crisis to maintain power and control

Totally creates chaos throughout MENA and even trains, funds, arms and protects Al Quaida and ISIS

Oil companies also want to 150 to 200 barrel oil, but consumption is down world-wide due to massive "hidden" depression/recession

Allow terrorists to take over in Syria and Iraq for triple-whammy...jeopardize oil to drive up prices, and create "terrorist" chaos so the MIC gets to continue building weapons and playing war, all while using threat of said "terrorists" to destroy American freedom and create a tyrannical police state in order to "keep us safe" from the very terrorists they have created.

I'd say this is all going to end very badly, but at the same time it never really ends.  The psycho, treasonous governments, the MIC, and global elitists and banksters just keep this shit rolling on year after year in perpetuity.  And they will continue to do so until they locked the world down and begin to conduct hard-core extermination of anyone who resists.

 

onthesquare's picture

This is known as "The Stategy of Terror".  It has been going on for centuries and done so by France, Britain, Japanese, Germans, Dutch, Russians, Romans, Egyptians, Danes, Italians, Australians...or just about everybody and now USA has the new plane and so here we are.

7.62x54r's picture

Odumbo still has staff there?

What a retard.

Hulk's picture

That is incredible. So often, marketing is completely overlooked !!!

Pool Shark's picture

 

 

"What difference at this point does it make??!!"

 

 

ilion's picture

150 pathetic losers.

disabledvet's picture

Are we paying for that?

Never One Roach's picture

Bring back Gen Westmoreland. He and LBJ know how to win a war .. sent over half a million soldiers to Vietnam and see how we beat the pee out them....

 

Oh, wait a sec.....

Marigold's picture

Just like the Yanks slinked out of Saigon with their tails between their legs after being defeated by a nation of peasant farmers and fishermen so they again do the same in Iraq & Libya after leaving a trail of destruction behind them. It's time to say it ... The USA is truly the evil empire.

FinalEvent's picture

Temporarily closed,... hmm,.. reminds me of the gold window in 1971

Ratscam's picture

what were the jobs of the 78 embassy people (158-80 marines) in Tripoli? Issuing visas or being paid by Joe Sixpack to serve the interests of big corporations?
War is a racket, Smedley Butler

Aussie V's picture

If there was ever a woman who needed a massive course of 'Large Dick with Onions" It is that Marie Harf!!

Fair Dinkum, I've never seen a more frigid, dizzy brained, stuck up woman than that one.

tarsubil's picture

Little preview of DC? Oh please.

Freddie's picture

Bushes, Clintons and Obama all the same NWO gang.

Paul Craig Roberts said Libya towards the end of Khadaffi was one of the better places in the world for citizens.  Khadaffi had been using a lot of the oil revenue to improve the conditions.  Far better than Chavez or the Saudis who are/were fu*k ups.

It is all about stealing oil and gold via murdering people including innocent civilians.  Iraq, Libya, they are still trying in Syria, lots of places in Africa, they would roll over Iran if they could.

BadDog's picture

Dr. Roberts also went on to state that the neocons who are in charge of the U.S. now believe that a nuclear first strike on Russia can be pulled off.  These lunatics are from the same order that murdered JFK when he would not go along with their schemes.

laomei's picture

Just a reminder, Libya used to be nice and stable, enjoying some of the highest HDI levels in Africa.  They were not in debt and provided some amazing social services to keep things under control.  This was all because of literally a bunch of merchants backed by the US who were upset that they were not getting as much as they potentially could.  They funded the terrorists, which resulted in Gadaffi attacking them back, all the while screaming "terrorists". Can't have that though, so they execute him while his family flees.

 

And now this is where we are.

Omen IV's picture

yes but as i remember there were billions invested in a Goldman Sachs fund that disappeared or went away

whatever happened to that?

Freddie's picture

Putin was pretty enraged by what happened in Libya.  He was furious of the murder of Khadaffi.  Putin had said that he could have been given the chance to leave the country or been given a trial.

laomei's picture

A trial was never on the table, he knew far too much and in chaos such as the present situation would have resulted in his coming back to lead.  A stable Libya is simply a threat to far too many interests and it had been for decades.  Gaddafi always put his neck out on the line due to the "good example" problem.  That being, primarily, that if at any time there is a successful example of societal and economic theory that runs counter to the status quo, it MUST be demonized and destroyed.  For if it is allowed to foster, that's the end of capitalism.  See how the US attacked them over and over again for zero reason, then called Gaddafi the "mad dog".  When that wasn't good enough, the US started targetting his family directly for murder.

 

Great Man Made River - Notice how NATO found any excuse to bomb it... virtually unlimited water for everyone for free? Can't have that.

Education - University was free, as was all education up to it.  Along with the government gladly paying for education abroad

Subsidies - Massive piles of money for citizens to ensure stable lives after marriage.  No rents, everyone owned their home, gas and food was dirt cheap. Cars.. the government paid 50% of it for you.  Electricity? Also free.

Healthcare - Some of the best, also free... not good enough? Government pays for your treatment abroad

Agriculture - Want to be a farmer? Have some free land, free home, free equipment, free livestock and free seed

Unemployment - Graduated and unable to find work? The government will pay you the average salary until you can find work.

 

Sounds fucking insane, but all this was in despite of western sanctions with zero external debt, large cash reserves and surpluses, and they specifically rejected IMF bullshit.  No police forces either, so kinda hard to have a "police state".  The government was strictly grassroots bottom up.  HDI higher than Saudi.  Of course, such a place in the modern world cannot be allowed to exist, especially at a time when the great reset is nearing... it might spread.

 

See how the system was not only torn down entirely, but the western model was imposed on it, complete with a jew bank and international debt.  Gee, I wonder why it's in chaos, after ruining a system that worked for most... to the bane of a handful of merchants upset that they didn't have as much power and riches as they wanted who allied with al qaeda to get what they wanted.  There was a housing shortage which was being addressed. The plan to do away with the government bodies tasked with distributing oil revenue and give it to the people directly seemed to be enough to piss off some internal factions (who then began plotting), but the final straw was the unified african gold dinar system being devised.  Bad enough that Gaddafi presided over a "good example" system, that could be countered with propaganda and black ops.  But threatening the USD and Euro? That was as far as the west was willing to allow it to go.  You can say a lot of shit about the guy, but his speeches, while long and rambling tended to be incredibly accurate.

 

Oh well, he's murdered and dead now, and chucked out into the desert to be forgotten like a piece of trash while everything he spent his entire life building is being torn apart.  

whyami's picture

Putin was furious because he was cheated by the NATO scam caled 'no fly zone.' Later turned it to a full scale bombing and ground troop invasion.

ednraleigh's picture

Now THAT'S change we can believe in.  Hope they're alright.  Really!

whyami's picture

Don't even mention that! I feel cheated by trusting what this sociopath has to say. He lied just about everything he as promised. health care, lobbying, government transparency, liberty, tax cut, social security, deficit, economy, too big to fail, unemployment, income gap, poverty, crime, energy, and many others …

 

Dubaibanker's picture

That's right nmewn.

US officials from the TOP down are dumb and dumber.

Watch this clip that happened just yesterday on the US Capitol Hill.

A US Congressman does not know the difference between officials on his side or on the opposite side. Disaster is just round the corner for the US officials, whether it is Libyan, Iraqi, Pakistani or any other embassy or the Capitol Hill itself. 

Congressman Mistakes U.S. Officials For Indian Ones
Antifaschistische's picture

Well, the irony to me, is that if Russia put "heavily armed" Marine (equivalents) in the Ukraine...a country which has Ethic Russians, a country with which they share a border, the White House and it's propaganda machine would insist on boycotting the entire country of Russia.

Yet, we sprinkle our Marines around the globe like candy and don't expect anyone to detect any hypocrisy. 

Renewable Life's picture

What's really amusing, is talking to my fellow Americans who don't think the EXACT same thing would happen in this Country, if you removed the unified military and police threat of federal and state governments, at this point in our history!

Ethnic, religious, and economic pockets of violence and influence would emerge overnight, along with racial and cultural violence and "payback" killings, extortion, and massive refugee migrations!!

People would struggle to control their neighborhoods and communities, let alone deal with the bigger picture!! Thomas Jefferson and the boys worked this out 250 years ago and it's AS relevant today if not more, then it was then!!

But the powers that be, would always rather have tyranny and dictatorship, then Freedom, no matter what era you live in!!

americanspirit's picture

Renewable Life - I wish I could give you 100 greenies for your perceptive comments. The only missing part is what would happen to all the bankers and politicians who couldn't manage to get out of town in time.

whyami's picture

They are fine with us ordinary citizens so long as we are under their control. They can care less about how we live.

thorsmjollnir's picture

How else are they going to get close enough to buy off the next regime?

Disenchanted's picture

The US Embassy in Libya was always in Tripoli.

There was not an embassy in Benghazi...

observer007's picture

Evacuation comes only hours after Libyan government warned country could be torn apart by clashes between rival militias.

Latest News:

http://tersee.com/#!q=libya&t=text

Antifaschistische's picture

....are those US made rocket launchers, guns and bullets I see in the hands of milita men!!

Shouldn't Putin point that out!!

Kirk2NCC1701's picture

I suspect that the Bear and the Camel are teaching the Eagle that TWO can play the game of National Destabilization.

Who's gonna sell you oil now, bitchez!?

Clycntct's picture

"National Destabilization"

That says it all.

onewayticket2's picture

another crisis, another fundraiser.....is all this destruction the "hope" or the "change"?

Zero Govt's picture

no this is US Govt Foreign Policy remember.. the strategy is to be hated by the local population always trying to put NWO puppets in

...same strategy back home 

it's working

Catullus's picture

Marie Harf, resident douche, Washington DC

thamnosma's picture

Living the high life off of our backs.  

More_sellers_than_buyers's picture

PLUS A MILLION...I have never met her, but I can guarantee she is a douche

Urban Redneck's picture

The embassy is either open or closed.

Making up words like a child and arbitrarily assigning them to one of these only two options (which therefore must encompass the new made up word) does not change the fact that embassy is either open or closed.

If the embassy is not open, then the embassy must be closed.

Max Cynical's picture

Marie Harf, Jen Psaki...little girls playing government.