Horrific Libyan Suffering Under US-Supported ISIS Rule
by Stephen Lendman
Washington helped ISIS establish a foothold in Sirte, now expanding to control more coastal territory. Most city residents able to get out fled after its fighters took over.
In a new report titled “We Feel We Are Cursed: Life under ISIS in Sirte, Libya,” Human Rights Watch (HRW) said it’s “inflicting severe hardship on the local population by diverting food, medicine, fuel, and cash, along with homes it seized from residents who fled, to fighters and functionaries it has amassed in the Mediterranean port city.”
According to terrorism/counterterrorism analyst Letta Tayler, “ISIS is causing terrible suffering in Sirte even for Muslims who follow its rules.”
With world attention focused largely on Syria and Iraq, “ISIS is also getting away with murder in Libya.” HRW documented dozens of killings, kidnappings and disappearances, many presumed dead.
Major war crimes are being committed, replicating what’s happening in Syria and Iraq, civilians brutally targeted in cold blood, some accused of being spies or sorcerers.
Former and current Sirte residents HRW interviewed outside the city explained “public beheadings, corpses in orange jumpsuits hanging from scaffolding in what they referred to as ‘crucifixions,’ and masked fighters snatching men from their beds in the night.”
So-called “morality police” patrol streets menacingly, terrorizing residents, “fining or flogging men for smoking, listening to music, or failing to ensure their wives and sisters (are) covered with loose black abayas.”
Fathers were ordered to marry off their daughters to group fighters. Men and boys are forced into mosques for prayer and religious training. A young woman in Misrata for healthcare called conditions in Sirte “unbearable.”
“Everyone is living in fear. They are killing innocent people. There are no groceries. The hospital has no doctors or nurses.”
“There is no medicine…There are spies on every street. Most people have left but we are trapped. We don’t have enough money to leave.”
Homes of perceived enemies are looted and destroyed. Shops selling Western clothing were closed. ISIS controls the entire city and adjacent coastal areas.
A US-installed Libyan Government of National Accord puppet regime has no legitimacy. A previous article explained US, UK and French special forces have been operating illegally in Libya for months. Aerial operations are ongoing ahead of likely escalated fighting.
On the phony pretext of combating ISIS, Washington and its rogue allies appear readying for Libya 2.0, a repeat of 2011 lawless aggression – sure to create greater violence, instability and chaos.
Civilians suffer most in all wars. Washington and its rogue partners call them legitimate targets. ISIS commanders consider them easy marks to control.
A rule book explains principles demanding compliance. Sirte’s central Martyrs’ Square became a platform for beheadings and other atrocities.
If someone is accused of “cursing God,” cold-blooded murder follows, family members prohibited from burying their loved ones, denounced as “infidels.”
Various other regional terrorist groups are as ruthless as ISIS, US-supported allies, used as proxy foot soldiers, waging endless wars on humanity – peace elusive and unattainable.
Late in my life, I don’t ever expect to see America’s imperial project end, a world at peace, free from the scourge of US aggression.
I hope my time expires before Washington’s rage for dominance launches WW III, risking the extinction of life on earth.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.