USA bombing Libya, again

Libya Civil War

The USA has began another round of bombing in Libya, this time going against the Islamic State:

February 19, 2016

CAIRO — U.S. airstrikes Friday hit a suspected Islamic State training camp in Libya, leaving more than 40 dead — possibly including a senior leader — in an attack that followed Western calls for stepped up pressures against militant strongholds in North Africa.

The Pentagon press secretary, Peter Cook, said a key target was a senior Tunisian militant linked to deadly commando-style attacks last year in his homeland.

Earlier, a U.S. defense official said the militant, Noureddine Chouchane, was “likely killed” in Friday’s airstrikes. But Cook said full details were being assessed. Libyan authorities placed the overall death toll at more than 40.

It was the first major U.S. airstrikes in Libya since November and followed increased alarms by Western leaders about a widening Islamic State presence in Libya, which could open new oil-linked funding sources and give militants footholds along migrant routes to southern Europe.

President Obama this week urged for greater efforts to keep the Islamic State from “digging in” across Libya, where ongoing political infighting has divided the country into rival administrations and complicated Western-led efforts to battle militant factions.

February 19, 2016

The mayor of the Libyan city of Sabratha, Hussein al-Thwadi, told Reuters the planes struck at 3:30 a.m. (0130 GMT), hitting a building in the city’s Qasr Talil district, home to many foreign workers.

He said 41 people had been killed and six wounded. The death toll could not immediately be confirmed with other officials.

Photos released by the municipal authorities showed a massive crater in grey earth. Several wounded men lay bandaged in hospital.

The air strikes targeted a house in a residential district about 8 km (5miles) west of the centre, the municipal authorities said in a statement. The house had been rented to foreigners including Tunisians suspected of belonging to Islamic State, and medium calibre weapons including machine guns and rocket-propelled grenades had been found in the rubble, the statement said.

Tunisian security sources have said they believe Tunisian Islamic State fighters have been trained in camps near Sabratha, which is close to the Tunisian border.

A U.S. military officer said among those targeted in the air strikes was a senior Tunisian operative, Noureddine Chouchane, believed to be connected to the attacks last year on a Tunis museum and the Sousse beach resort which killed dozens of tourists.

Officials have said those two attacks, both claimed by Islamic State, were carried out by gunmen who trained in Libya.

“We are assessing the results of the operation,” said Col. Mark Cheadle, spokesman for the Pentagon’s Africa Command.

The situation in Libya is one that the USA helped create as the Obama Administration bombed Libya a few years ago as part of its efforts to overthrow the ‘elected’ government of Muammar al-Gaddafi back in 2011.  More than 8,000 American personnel in warships and aircraft were deployed in the area. At least 3,000 targets were struck in 14,202 strike sorties. Instead of bringing ‘peace,’ these interventions have created chaos and opportunities for terrorism.  Back then, the USA supported a group with ties to the Muslim Brotherhood. Libya has had a lot of violence since, and there are various factions controlling different parts of it.

It is widely believed that USA actions and inactions in Iraq, Syria, and Libya led to the rise of the group calling itself the Islamic State. Many realize this and are upset.

Notice also the following from back in 2014:

Citizens of the West have little understanding of the depth of the sufferings unleashed on the peoples of North Africa, Palestine, Syria and Iraq since the United States and NATO launched wars against the peoples of this region…

It was three years ago when NATO had declared the end of the NATO mission, loudly announcing that the NATO mission to Libya had been ‘one of the most successful in NATO history.’ Despite this declaration of success there were clear signs of the remnants of the NATO suborned militias fighting for control of Libya. Today, that fighting has engulfed all of Libyan society to the point that the militias that had been deployed by NATO are now out of control while the funders of the militias are caught in the wider disputations over the future of the Africa, Palestine and the Arabian Peninsula. Calls for the United Nations and for the African Union to militarily intervene in Libya must now be accompanied by the call for ensuring that none of the current members of the UN Security Council who were participants in the NATO intervention can be part of any UN force to demilitarize Libya to disarm the out of control militias. …

Despite the best efforts of the United States’ State Department and NATO to present a so called ‘transition’ process with the procedural democratic rituals such as elections, the role of the militias has been the dominant feature of the warfare and destruction. When the Libyan human rights activist Salwa Bugaighis was slain in Benghazi last month, both Samantha Powers (US PermanentRepresentative to the United Nations) and Hilary Clinton (former Secretary of State) issued statements denouncing her murder but these two architects of the destruction of Libya remain indicted in the court of public opinion for their roles in creating the present conflagration.

Americans tend to remember Benghazi because of the deaths caused at its embassy there in 2011 (see also Benghazi, American General Lovell, and Hillary Clinton and Hillary Clinton defends net result of intervention in Libya and deflects negative questions on Benghazi).

Those in Libya, Iraq, Syria, etc. have truly been suffering. ISIS, the remainder of the Muslim Brotherhood, and Ansar al-Sharia are all attempting to install a Sunni Muslim empire that seems similar to what the Bible tells of, in several places, such as Daniel 11:40-43, Psalm 83:2-8, and Ezekiel 30:2-8.

As far as Libya goes, there are various references to that word in the Bible. However, many of the translations are questionable as sometimes a word for an old area of Persia (Phut) is translated as Libya. Basically Strong’s (from Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance) words 3864, 3865, & 3866 means people from the interior of Africa and seems to include the areas west of Egypt. Here are three prophetic passages that refer to it with Strong’s words 3864, 3865 & 3866, respectively:

40 “At the time of the end the king of the South shall attack him; and the king of the North shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter the countries, overwhelm them, and pass through. 41 He shall also enter the Glorious Land, and many countries shall be overthrown; but these shall escape from his hand: Edom, Moab, and the prominent people of Ammon. 42 He shall stretch out his hand against the countries, and the land of Egypt shall not escape. 43 He shall have power over the treasures of gold and silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt; also the Libyans and Ethiopians shall follow at his heels. (Daniel 11:40-43)

2 “Son of man, prophesy and say, ‘Thus says the Lord God:
“Wail, ‘Woe to the day!’ 3 For the day is near,Even the day of the Lord is near;It will be a day of clouds, the time of the Gentiles. 4 The sword shall come upon Egypt,And great anguish shall be in Ethiopia,When the slain fall in Egypt,And they take away her wealth,And her foundations are broken down.
5 “Ethiopia, Libya, Lydia, all the mingled people, Chub, and the men of the lands who are allied, shall fall with them by the sword.”
6 ‘Thus says the Lord:
“Those who uphold Egypt shall fall,And the pride of her power shall come down.From Migdol to Syene Those within her shall fall by the sword,”Says the Lord God.
7 “They shall be desolate in the midst of the desolate countries,And her cities shall be in the midst of the cities that are laid waste. 8 Then they will know that I am the Lord,When I have set a fire in Egypt And all her helpers are destroyed. 9 On that day messengers shall go forth from Me in ships To make the careless Ethiopians afraid,And great anguish shall come upon them,As on the day of Egypt;For indeed it is coming!” (Ezekiel 30:2-9)

1 The word of the Lord which came to Jeremiah the prophet against the nations…
9 Come up, O horses, and rage, O chariots!
And let the mighty men come forth:
The Ethiopians and the Libyans who handle the shield,
And the Lydians who handle and bend the bow.
10 For this is the day of the Lord God of hosts,
A day of vengeance,
That He may avenge Himself on His adversaries.
The sword shall devour;
It shall be satiated and made drunk with their blood;
For the Lord God of hosts has a sacrifice
In the north country by the River Euphrates. (Jeremiah 46:1,9-10)

In Ezekiel 30:5 and Jeremiah 46:9 it is the words translated as Lydia and Lydians, not those translated as Libya and Libyans, that appear to be referring to the people in the area of modern Libya.

All the wars and fighting in the Arabic regions will ultimately result in a leader rising up that the Bible refers to as the final King of the South. And that will not end well for those who truly support his end time confederation per Daniel 11:40-43. Yet, it likely will take even more war, as well as at least one peace treaty (cf. Daniel 9:27), for that leader to rise up. That being said, there is war and destruction prophesied for those associated with Libya in the Bible.

Jesus told His followers to watch, related to prophetic events, in Mark 13.

Watch the Middle East.

News Presenter:  John Hickey