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Libya: Mahmoud Jibril, Al-Jazeera & the Triumph of Televised Propaganda

Posted: 2012-07-09
From: Mathaba
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Who is Mahmoud Jibril, the new western-backed dictator hoisted upon Libya? VotaireNet`s Thierry Meyssan took a closer look late last year...


Excerpt from Voltairenet:

The 2011 shift

With the revolutions in North Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, Wadah Khanfar dramatically changed Al-Jazeera’s editorial policy. The Group played a central role in lending credence to the "Arab spring" myth, according to which the people - eager to live in a Western-style society - had risen to overthrow their dictatorial regimes and switch to parliamentary democracies. No distinction was made between the events in Tunisia and Egypt, and those in Libya and Syria. As for the popular movements in Yemen and Bahrain, they did not draw enough viewers!

In reality, the Anglo-Saxons tried to take advantage of the popular revolts to replay the same "Arab spring" scenario that they had staged in the 1920s to take possession of the former Ottoman provinces and install puppet parliamentary democracies under Western tutelage. Al-Jazeera’s coverage of the Tunisian and Egyptian revolts was designed to dampen the flames of revolution and to legitimize the governments aligned with the United States and Israel. In Egypt the uprising was harnessed in the interest of a single element of the opposition: the Muslim Brotherhood, embodied by the channel’s star preacher ... Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi.

Outraged by the new editorial policy and the increasingly frequent recourse to lies [5], a certain number of journalists, including Ghassan Ben Jedo, walked out slamming the door behind them.

Who’s pulling the information strings?

Nevertheless, it wasn’t until the Libyan episode that the masks started to fall. In fact, the boss of JTrack and mentor of Wadah Kanfhar is none other than Mahmoud Jibril (the "J" in "JTrack" stands for "Jibril"). This friendly, brilliant yet shallow, manager had been recommended to Muammar Gaddafi by his new American friends to pilot the economic opening of Libya after the normalization of its diplomatic ties. Under Saif el-Islam Gaddafi’s control, he was appointed both Minister of Planning and Director of the Development Authority, thus becoming de facto the number two man in the government, having authority over other ministers. At breakneck speed, he forged ahead with the deregulation of Libya’s socialist economy and the privatization of its public enterprises.

JPEG - 20.4 kb
Mahmoud Jibril with his friend and business partner, Bernard Henri-Lévy, in conquered Tripoli.

Through his JTrack training activities, Mahmoud Jibril established personal relationships with almost all the Arab and Southeast Asian leaders. He had offices in Bahrain and Singapore. In addition, Mr. Jibril created trading companies, including one dealing with Malaysian and Australian timber in partnership with his French friend, Bernard-Henri Levy.

Mahmoud Jibril started his university studies in Cairo, where he met and married the daughter of one of Nasser’s ministers. He later continued his studies in the United States, where he assimilated the libertarian views that he tried to inject into al-Gaddafi’s anarchist ideology. But, more importantly, in Libya Mr. Jibril joined the Muslim Brotherhood. It was in this capacity that he placed his coreligionists, Brothers Wadah Kanfhar and Yusuf al-Qaradawi, in Al-Jazeera ..

During the first half of 2011, the Qatari channel became the preferred instrument for pro-Western propaganda: it went to great lengths to obscure the anti-imperialist and anti-Zionist aspect of the Arab revolutions and, in each country, it picked the actors it intended to support and those it decided to deprecate. Not surprisingly, it supported the king of Bahrain, a student of Mahmoud Jibril, who had his people gunned down, while Al-Jazeera’s spiritual counsellor, Sheikh al-Qaradawi, was calling for a Jihad over the air against al-Gaddafi and el-Assad, falsely accusing them of murdering their own people.

With Mr Jibril as prime minister of the rebel government of Libya, the height of duplicity was reached when a replica of the Green Square and Bab-el-Azizia was built in the studios of Al-Jazeera in Doha, where footage of false images was shot portraying pro-US "insurgents" entering Tripoli. Need I mention the insults I received when I denounced this manipulation in the columns of Voltairenet.org? Yet Al-Jazeera and Sky News broadcasted these false images on the second day of the Battle of Tripoli, sowing confusion among the Libyan people. It was actually only three days later that the "rebels" - almost exclusively from Misrata - entered Tripoli, devastated by NATO’s bombs.

The same goes for the announcement by Al-Jazeera of Saif el-Islam Gadhafi’s arrest and the confirmation of his capture by the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court Luis Moreno-Ocampo. I was the first, through Russia Today, to warn against the manipulation. And again, I was ridiculed by certain newspapers, until Saif el-Islam turned up in person to wake up the journalists holed up at the Rixos Hotel and take them to the real Bal el-Azizia square.

Questioned about such lies by channel France24 in Arabic, the president of the National Transitional Council (CNT), Mustafa Abdul Jalil, chalked it up to a war stratagem and said he was delighted to have thus accelerated the fall of the Jamahiriya.

What future for Al-Jazeera?

The conversion of Al-Jazeera into a propaganda tool for the recolonisation of Libya was not achieved without the knowledge of the emir of Qatar, but indeed under his leadership. The Gulf Cooperation Council was the first to call for an armed intervention in Libya and Qatar was the first Arab country to join the Contact Group. He funneled weapons to the Libyan "rebels" before sending in his own ground troops, especially during the Battle of Tripoli. In exchange, he obtained the privilege of controlling all the oil trade on behalf of the National Transitional Council.

It is too early to say whether the resignation of Wadah Khanfar marks the end of his mission in Qatar, or if it heralds the channel’s desire to recover the credibility that took 15 years to build and only 6 months to lose.

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