The Libyan revolution is one of the most surprising amongst Arab countries. Libyan people are known for being very peaceful. The Libyans have not only revolted against Gaddafi, they have also used armed revolution as their means. Just ten days after the beginning of the movement, the revolution was armed, unlike the revolutions in other Arab countries. The West, which pretends to support peaceful demonstrations, has put all its efforts toward supporting the armed revolution in Libya. If the popular revolution in Libya had triumphed without any interference, we would have witnessed a spark of the first Arab unity since decades. And Libya has the natural resources and wealth to make it happen. Unfortunately, the Libyan revolution was hijacked, and the Egyptian and Tunisian revolutions have stumbled.
After the success of revolutionary forces in controlling 90 percent of Libyan land, it’s still unclear what is next. Will a new civil war erupt? Will Al-Qaeda take control? Will NATO find the pretext to intervene in Libya to control its wealth? What is for sure is that the Arab Spring and the consequent instability of the Arab world open a door of hope for the Palestinians. The decades-long status quo in the Arab world has tremendously harmed the Palestinian cause.
Although the most influential revolution on the Palestinian cause is the Syrian revolution, the changes in Libya might introduce new logistical improvements for the Palestinian factions. The wealthy Libyan state has funded many Palestinian factions in the past, mainly the Marxist and leftist factions. PFLP-GC received US$ 1.5 million monthly from Gaddafi. The PFLP and DFLP received US$ 1 million monthly. Other smaller factions received various amounts of funding. Nonetheless, the new Libyan regime with its Islamist tendency might divert the line of funding to Islamist groups like Hamas and IJP, if not the more radical groups like PRC and Jaysh Al-Islam.
It is still unclear who will take control of Libya. The stability of Libya depends on the liquidation of Gaddafi and the figures of his regime. If they stay on the loose, Libya will be looking forward to a long-term civil war and instability. Gaddafi and his assistants will use armed groups, especially Tuareg, to take revenge.
The Libyan revolution has had a negative effect on the Arab Spring, diverting the use of peaceful means to justify the use of arms. Thus, it planted a split in the bodies of the Arab revolutions. It is a split between those who favour armed revolution and those who oppose it. This split opens wide the doors for foreign interference in these revolutions. And it has worked well for the United States and other European powers. This is a new style of the ancient “divide and conquer.”
The Western powers have not taken into account one significant factor regarding the Palestinian cause. Their support of armed struggle in Libya opens the door to justifying the return of the armed struggle against the Israeli occupation.
The Libyan revolution has now offered the Palestinian military factions a new source of funding and logistical support. Such funding and support had dried up during the past three decades when the factions left Lebanon. The only source of funding has been Iran, more or less. Now Libya can be considered a possible source. Qatar will also expand its influence on the Middle East conflict through Libya.
But as noted above, the result of the Syrian revolution will remain the number one influence on the future of the region. The absence of political life in Syria for almost five decades has negatively impacted the opposition there. Most of the opposition, including the Syrian Muslim brotherhood, live abroad and are funded by Russia, the United States, or France. The opposition has a hand in encouraging the crimes committed by the Syrian regime by organising armed groups, especially in the Jisir Shaghour area. The Syrian regime has found its pretext to crush the revolution through the existence of the Salafi armed groups in some areas. Nonetheless, this pretext was a trap.
The Syrian revolution has been hijacked by the foreign-funded opposition. This opposition has been pushing for international military intervention. It was a shy invitation at the beginning, but the voices have become louder during the past couple of months.
Syria remains a critical area for any military intervention. If Western powers intervene militarily, the last card in the regime’s hand could be to divert the war against Israel. This would quell the revolution once and for all. It could result in a regional war as well. The Syrian front is open to many scenarios. Another would be that the opposition would succeed in taking power, causing the regime to fall. If this happens, it would be disastrous for the Palestinian cause. The Israeli flag would be flying in Damascus in less than a year.
There’s no clear response to the demands of the Syrian people. They should regain control over their revolution. If not, their revolution, dreams, and hopes will be crushed on the doorstep of international interests.
Qatar, as Libya, is trying to gain more political influence in the region by interfering in Syria. Through the loose Jordanian-Syrian borders, huge amounts of broadcast equipment for professional and personal use have been injected into Syria. There will soon be a Thurayya (satellite-connection) phone in every house in Syria.
The amateur videos that have been released increase the doubts about what is happening in Syria. The videos released by youth produce the same doubts. We see footage of huge demonstrations. We don’t see the security forces present. And then we see other videos of individual cases of torture and killings. But we don’t see any videos of the intervals. How do we get from the point of mass demonstrations to the point of lone individuals in the streets being killed in cold blood?
If the scenario of a regional war takes place, Israel will face the most critical and dangerous conflict since its creation 63 years ago. This winter will be a hot one. It will determine the line between failure and success, between freedom and a new colonisation.