Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. 2019 From A Fourth Turning Perspective - James_Quinn
2.Beware the Young Stocks Bear Market! - Zeal_LLC
3.Safe Havens are Surging. What this Means for Stocks 2019 - Troy_Bombardia
4.Most Popular Financial Markets Analysis of 2018 - Trump and BrExit Chaos Dominate - Nadeem_Walayat
5.January 2019 Financial Markets Analysis and Forecasts - Nadeem_Walayat
6.Silver Price Trend Analysis 2019 - Nadeem_Walayat
7.Why 90% of Traders Lose - Nadeem_Walayat
8.What to do With Your Money in a Stocks Bear Market - Stephen_McBride
9.Stock Market What to Expect in the First 3~5 Months of 2019 - Chris_Vermeulen
10.China, Global Economy has Tipped over: The Surging Dollar and the Rallying Yen - FXCOT
Last 7 days
UKIP No Longer About BrExit, Becomes BNP 2.0, Muslim Hate Party - 21st Mar 19
A Message to the Gold Bulls: Relying on the CoT Gives You A False Sense of Security - 20th Mar 19
The Secret to Funding a Green New Deal - 20th Mar 19
Vietnam, Part I: Colonialism and National Liberation - 20th Mar 19
Will the Fed Cut its Interest Rate Forecast, Pushing Gold Higher? - 20th Mar 19
Dow Jones Stock Market Topping Pattern - 20th Mar 19
Gold Stocks Outperform Gold but Not Stocks - 20th Mar 19
Here’s What You’re Not Hearing About the US - China Trade War - 20th Mar 19
US Overdosing on Debt - 19th Mar 19
Looking at the Economic Winter Season Ahead - 19th Mar 19
Will the Stock Market Crash Like 1937? - 19th Mar 19
Stock Market VIX Volaility Analysis - 19th Mar 19
FREE Access to Stock and Finanacial Markets Trading Analysis Worth $1229! - 19th Mar 19
US Stock Markets Price Anomaly Setup Continues - 19th Mar 19
Gold Price Confirmation of the Warning - 18th Mar 19
Split Stock Market Warning - 18th Mar 19
Stock Market Trend Analysis 2019 - Video - 18th Mar 19
Best Precious Metals Investment and Trades for 2019 - 18th Mar 19
Hurdles for Gold Stocks - 18th Mar 19
Pento: Coming QE & Low Rates Will Be ‘Rocket Fuel for Gold’ - 18th Mar 19
"This is for Tommy Robinson" Shouts Knife Wielding White Supremacist Terrorist in London - 18th Mar 19
This Is How You Create the Biggest Credit Bubble in History - 17th Mar 19
Crude Oil Bulls - For Whom the Bell Tolls - 17th Mar 19
Gold Mining Stocks Fundamentals - 17th Mar 19
Why Buy a Land Rover - Range Rover vs Huge Tree Branch Falling on its Roof - 17th Mar 19
UKIP Urged to Change Name to BNP 2.0 So BrExit Party Can Fight a 2nd EU Referendum - 17th Mar 19
Tommy Robinson Looks Set to Become New UKIP Leader - 16th Mar 19
Gold Final Warning: Here Are the Stunning Implications of Plunging Gold Price - 16th Mar 19
Towards the End of a Stocks Bull Market, Short term Timing Becomes Difficult - 16th Mar 19
UKIP Brexit Facebook Groups Reveling in the New Zealand Terror Attacks Blaming Muslim Victims - 16th Mar 19
Gold – US Dollar vs US Dollar Index - 16th Mar 19
Islamophobic Hate Preachers Tommy Robinson and Katie Hopkins have Killed UKIP and Brexit - 16th Mar 19
Countdown to The Precious Metals Gold and Silver Breakout Rally - 15th Mar 19
Shale Oil Splutters: Brent on Track for $70 Target $100 in 2020 - 15th Mar 19
Setting up a Business Just Got Easier - 15th Mar 19
Stock Market Elliott Wave Analysis Trend Forercast - Video - 15th Mar 19
Gold Warning - Here Are the Stunning Implications of Plunging Gold Price - Part 1 - 15th Mar 19
UK Weather SHOCK - Trees Dropping Branches onto Cars in Stormy Winds - Sheffield - 15th Mar 19
Best Time to Trade Forex - 15th Mar 19
Why the Green New Deal Will Send Uranium Price Through the Roof - 14th Mar 19
S&P 500's New Medium-Term High, but Will Stock Market Uptrend Continue? - 14th Mar 19
US Conservatism - 14th Mar 19
Gold in the Age of High-speed Electronic Trading - 14th Mar 19
Britain's Demographic Time Bomb Has Gone Off! - 14th Mar 19
Why Walmart Will Crush Amazon - 14th Mar 19
2019 Economic Predictions - 14th Mar 19
Tax Avoidance Bills Sent to Thousands of Workers - 14th Mar 19

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

Stock Market Trend Forecast March to September 2019

Who Controls Libyan Oil?

Politics / Crude Oil Oct 17, 2013 - 08:01 AM GMT

By: Andrew_McKillop

Politics

LIBYA'S BEEFEATER LEAGUE DEFENDS THE OIL
In August, Reuters reported from Tripoli:  “Libya will use all means, including military force if necessary, to prevent striking security guards at the country’s main ports from selling its crude oil independently, Prime Minister Ali Zeidan said”. Zeidan called the security guards a critical challenge to the government, because strikes at Libya’s two largest ports have pushed production and exports to their lowest levels since the civil war that ousted 42-year veteran leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.


Ali Zeidan said that the leader of the protesters, Ibrahim al-Jathran, who is the regional head of the Petroleum Defence League (called the Facilities Guard by the government), “wanted to sell the oil independently of Libya’s state National Oil Corp”. Libya's oil minister Abdelbari al-Arusi estimated that the state lost about $1.6 billion in oil revenues for the one-month period July 15-August 15.

On October 13, the 'Wall Street Journal' reported that 33-year-old Ibrahim al-Jathran, who spent time in Muammar Gaddafi's prisons and led a battalion of insurgents for control of their hometowns and Cyrenaica's eastern oil port cities during the uprising is now in direct conflict with Ali Zeidan. Last year however, Zeidan's Tripoli government gave al-Jathran control of eastern Libya's Petroleum Defense League, originally a government force tasked with protecting oil facilities.

The Associate Press had previously reported on October 12 that Mohammed Sowan, leader of Libya's Justice and Construction party had announced from his Benghazi headquarters that the Libyan parliament is "seriously searching for an alternative" to Ali Zeidan. Plots against Zeidan were said to include poisoning attempts, parried by food tester and tasters, as in the Beefeater times of England.

Sowan is a regional Cyrenaica political-religious leader with close links to al-Jathran and says that “mismanagement” by Mr. Zeidan's government might have led to "irresponsible action by individuals”, referring to the earlier kidnapping of Zeidan. Under any analysis, Ali Zeidan faces mounting pressures in Parliament, first from Islamist blocs including the Muslim Brotherhood and ultra-radical Salafis, now joined by Independents, who criticize Mr. Zeidan over allegations of corruption, linkage with Gaddafi, waste of public funds, rising prices and unemployment, and deteriorating security.

BREAK-UP OF THE LIBYAN STATE?
Cyrenaica flourished from 1951-1969 when it enjoyed the patronage of Libya's first and only king, King Idris I. After Gaddafi came to power in his 1969 coup the province fell into decay and was denied its share of the country's oil wealth. A powerful Senussi leader, Idris was considered a direct descendant of the Prophet Mohammed through his daughter Fatimah. Idris, who died aged 94 in the 1980s became Chief of the Senussi Order in 1916.

Idris was first recognized by the British under the new title Emir of the territory of Cyrenaica, a status also conferred by the Italians in 1920. He was later highly active supporting the Allied's campaign against Italian and German forces in Libya, during World War II. Making things much more complex however, another more recent member of the Senussi Order which was founded in Algeria in 1837, was Abdullah Senussi. Married to a sister of one of Gaddafi's wives, Senussi in 1999 was convicted in absentia in France for his role in the 1989 bombing of a UTA plane over Niger that resulted in the deaths of 170 people. Also wanted for questioning by Scottish police about the Lockerbie bombing, Abdullah Senussi was usually called the secret police chief and leading confidant of Gaddafi. He is also “credited” with several spectacular killings, abductions and poisonings of Gaddafi's rivals.

For Gaddafi, one of his main long-term roles was ensuring Benghazi city was under full control. Benghazites claim several thousand persons were killed, and many more tortured by order of Senussi who fled during the civil war but was finally extradited from Mauritania to Libya in late 2012. For Libya's Islamists, Senussi was a traitor to the Order. Working for Gaddafi, using assassination, deportation and bribery he personally prevented the Senussi Order from maintaining its former strong presence in Tripolitania.

After the rebellion which felled Gaddafi in 2011, many in the east expected an immediate injection of money and development. They have been frustrated at the slow pace of change coming from the interim government in Tripoli. This fed plot and coup rumors to the extent that Cyrenaica's political leaders now fear assassination, poisoning or abduction by agents of Tripoli, who would claim to be defending national unity. Despite this however, there is no consensus in favor of local leaders' plans for independence. More important for national unity, the Petroleum Defence Leagues, operating in all three of Libya's major regions, are able through their firepower, mobility and “petrodollar” wealth to create and maintain a major base of popular support.

The Leagues claim they do not presently want to destroy the nation state or create a federal system, but defy attempts by the weak central authorities to control them, and claim the central government is infiltrated or controlled by Gaddafi-era criminals, and foreign hostile powers. In Cyrenaica under al-Jathran, his 17 000-strong League defends Senussi Order claims, for example the restoration in Barqa and Tripoli of Imam Mohammed Ali El Senussi’s great mosques which were suppressed by Gaddafi. The Leagues claim they are the first line of defence and the legitimate powerbrokers for Libya. Many are connected to or directly sponsor their own political representatives in Parliament.

BINARY OPPOSITION
The Senussi and other orders in Islam are mostly grounded in what anthropologist Levi-Strauss called moiety (from the French word moitie for “half”) marriage systems where the whole society operates a marriage and clan system where it is split down the middle. The two halves intermarry but with constant tension and opposition. Any one person is born in one moiety, but has to marry somebody from the other moiety. Levi-Strauss' theory was attacked by many anthropologists because, unlike his claim, it was not at all universal – in fact only some societies use or used the moiety system. Levi-Strauss did not go on to argue that for Islamic societies with the Sunni-Shia dualism or split, the moiety system was especially acceptable.

The school of anthropology due to Levi-Strauss is now called cultural and political ecology, and its focus for example includes the duality of genes-versus-culture and arguments about capitalism creating a binary opposite of communism. Several anthropologists and political economists using this type of analysis, like Gunder Frank and Wallerstein, Edward Wilson, Edmund Leach, Mary Douglas and others argue that Third World and primitive societies, upon culture contact with the West, inevitably mutate.

When the Senussi Order was founded in Algeria in the 19th century, the French colonial authorities banned and repressed it – forcing  it to move to Libya as well as becoming both more 'political” and including sub-orders or branches which are Islamic fundamentalist or orthodox. Later, Gaddafi also repressed the Order in Tripolitania, resulting in Benghazi and the east becoming its main base.

Historians using cultural anthropology theory say that inside Europe, from well before the Industrial Revolution, social mutation due to economic, religious and political change was a powerful factor in creating large regional and local power systems such as the Baltic League of city states. Inside Libya today, the Petroleum Defence Leagues are operating major change of the nation state - that can be claimed to have almost never existed. After the first and only Senussi King Idris of Libya, the state of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi emerged and then fell. Gaddafi often said: “I am Libya”.

To be sure, the claimed 'constitutionalists' like Ali Zeidan will say that 'Islamic political rivals' briefly abducted him in an attempt to terrorize the Tripoli government and in Zeidan's words “turn the country into another Afghanistan or Somalia”. Somalia, out of interest, has a special role for anthropologists by having the most intensive moiety system in the world. Zeidan was forced to add that he believed his kidnappers were possibly members of the so-called Libyan Revolutionaries Operation Room, the militia umbrella group loosely affiliated with and partly paid by his own Interior Ministry. Like the other ministries, it has clear geographical powers with “turf war” conflict on its fuzzy borders.

In other words the Tripoli government is a moiety, split down the middle between Tripolitanians and Cyrenaicans (with the very low population Fezzan region forming the third “moiety”), as well as the Petroleum Defence Leagues either directly or indirectly financed and armed by rival oil companies, refiners, transporters and traders.

At present and until all traces of former Gaddafi chiefs and powerbrokers have been purged – as demanded by all main parties in parliament, and the Leagues – Libya can only be in mutation. This can possibly be mutation towards a federal, regional state, or city state form of government. A continued unified nation state with a single government and single capital in Tripoli is probably unlikely.

Until the its state and governance issues are solved, Libyan oil production will necessarily be erratic.

By Andrew McKillop

Contact: xtran9@gmail.com

Former chief policy analyst, Division A Policy, DG XVII Energy, European Commission. Andrew McKillop Biographic Highlights

Co-author 'The Doomsday Machine', Palgrave Macmillan USA, 2012

Andrew McKillop has more than 30 years experience in the energy, economic and finance domains. Trained at London UK’s University College, he has had specially long experience of energy policy, project administration and the development and financing of alternate energy. This included his role of in-house Expert on Policy and Programming at the DG XVII-Energy of the European Commission, Director of Information of the OAPEC technology transfer subsidiary, AREC and researcher for UN agencies including the ILO.

© 2013 Copyright Andrew McKillop - All Rights Reserved Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisor.

Andrew McKillop Archive

© 2005-2019 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules