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Libya: We ‘Wanted Freedom,’ but We ‘Got War’

The allied assault on Libyan air defenses has two goals: preventing further attacks by Libyan forces on rebels and other civilians, and degrading the Libyan military’s ability to contest a no-fly zone, Pentagon officials said yesterday.

Navy Vice Admiral William E. Gortney, director of the Pentagon’s Joint Staff, said US and British ships and submarines had launched the first phase of the missile operation to clear the way for the imposition of the UN-mandated no-fly zone.

Youth group Anakbayan today condemned the bombings against Libya by the U.S and other member organizations of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), calling it ‘nothing more than a blatant grab for oil resources’.

“While Obama claims ‘defense of anti-government civilians’ as their motivation, not even a peep can be heard from them in regards to the ongoing slaughter in Bahrain and Yemen” said Anakbayan national chairperson Vencer Crisostomo.

Recently, anti-government protests in the two countries have turned violent as state security forces have begun using gunfire against unarmed protesters, killing dozens. Also, unlike Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi, the heads of Bahrain and Yemen are close allies of the U.S in its so-called ‘war on terror’ and has opened their oil industries to control by multinational (MNCs) and transnational corporations (TNCs).

“Libya’s nationalized oil industry, which is free from the monopoly control of MNCs and TNCs, is a source of both relatively cheaper oil for the rest of the world and irritation for the U.S” said the youth leader.

Libya’s National Oil Corporation, in fact, is the 25th largest oil firm in the whole world.

A regional war in the Middle East and Mediterranean spells bad news for our Overseas Filipino Workers. The possibility of this war spilling over the Middle East is huge, given the strategic importance of Libya. President Aquino should prepare his team and make necessary emergency measures to at least, ensure the country’s economic and defense stability once this war worsens in the East.

Repatriation of OFW in Libya continues even amidst air strikes.

“This UN action is a humanitarian measure which is meant to safeguard the civilian population in contested areas of the said country,” Malaya said in a text message to abs-cbnNEWS.com.

“Recent developments will not likely adversely affect Filipinos as the bulk of our nationals have already exited Libya through the coordinated efforts of the DFA and DOLE (Department of Labor and Employment),” he added.

Ambassador Alejandrino Vicente and the embassy staff will remain in Tripoli to take care of the country’s interests and ensure the safety of the Filipinos who chose not to go home, according to Malaya.

Malaya said some Filipino nurses have chosen to stay put in order to administer to the needs of the sick and wounded.

“The safest places for them are the hospitals were they work. Hospitals are considered as protected areas under international humanitarian law,” he said.

What did the rest of the world think? (Developing story will unfold below)

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BlogWatch receives the “Best Story” Award for the First Data Journalism PH 2015 from the Open Knowledge Foundation and Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism  for their story on “Aid Monitoring: Citizens’ Initial Efforts in the Wake of Typhoon Yolanda” . Forbes Philippines also received the same award.

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