In a controversial twist of events, the Libyan government is pointing fingers of blame towards NATO. NATO, an intergovernmental military alliance consisting of 28 independent members, strives to fulfill the goals of the North Atlantic Treaty signed on April 4, 1949. However, recent allegations by the Libyan government suggest the latest action by NATO forces goes against the core of their mission.
Moussa Ibrahim, a spokesman for the Libyan government, said that NATO air raids have killed 700 Libyan civilians. While Ibrahim and his colleagues are vehement about the number of casualties sustained at the hands of NATO, Ibrahim nor any other official, has been able to provide evidence to confirm these alarming figures. NATO has denied killing large numbers of civilians, saying that all air strikes that have been carried out are for the sole purpose of protecting Libyan civilians from Gaddafi’s militant forces.
As the war continues to rage in Libya, Gaddafi’s movement is loosing steam. With Libyan and international support dwindling, Gaddafi and his supporters are taking last-ditch efforts to paint a grim picture of opposition supporters. As we can see from these latest allegations, these efforts are not outside the realm of painting NATO forces are murderers.
As long as the war in Libya rages on, civilian and military casualties at the hands of Gaddafi and NATO will continue. Both Libyan rebels and NATO forces have refused to accept a ceasefire until Gaddafi agrees to step down. If Gaddafi and the Libyan government are truly concerned about the welfare of their citizens, then they know exactly what to do—end the war. Until then, civilian and military casualties will continue to occur at astronomical rates. With government aides fleeing Libya at disproportionate rates and international support dissipating, the clock begins to tick on Gaddafi’s regime.
Despite the allegations set forth by the Libyan government, on June 1st NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen announced that NATO will extend its mission in Libya for another 90 days. This monumental decision lets Gaddafi and his regime know that NATO and its partners are determined to protect the Libyan people at any and all cost.