American Officials Aided Gadhafi: Al Jazeera

 @ibtimes on August 31 2011 3:27 PM
Gadhafi
Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi addresses the United Nations General Assembly in 2009. Reuters

A producer with Al Jazeera gained access to a demolished Libyan building filled with documents showing that despite the Gadhafi regime's constant anti-American rhetoric, Libyan leaders maintained direct communications with influential figures in America.

I found what appeared to be the minutes of a meeting between senior Libyan officials - Abubakr Alzleitny and Mohammed Ahmed Ismail - and David Welch, former assistant secretary of state under George W Bush. Welch was the man who brokered the deal to restore diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Libya in 2008, said the news producer Jamal Elshayyal.

Welch now works for Bechtel, a multinational American company with billion-dollar construction deals across the Middle East. The documents record that, on Aug. 2, 2011, David Welch met with Gadhafi's officials at the Four Seasons Hotel in Cairo, just a few blocks from the American embassy.

According to Al Jazeera, during that meeting Welch advised Gadhafi's team on how to win the propaganda war, suggesting several confidence-building measures contained in the documents. The documents appear to indicate that an influential American political personality was advising Gadhafi on how to beat America and NATO, according to the Al Jazeera report.

Welch wasn't the only prominent American who appears to have given help to Gadhafi as NATO and the rebel army were locked in battle with his regime, according to Al Jazeera.

On the floor of the intelligence chief's office lay an envelope addressed to Gaddafi's son Saif Al-Islam. Inside, I found what appears to be a summary of a conversation between U.S. congressman Dennis Kucinich, who publicly opposed U.S. policy on Libya, and an intermediary for the Libyan leader's son. It details a request by the congressman for information he needed to lobby U.S. lawmakers to suspend their support for the Libyan National Transitional Council and to put an end to NATO airstrikes, writes Al Jazeera's Elshayyal, using an alternate spelling of the Libyan leader's last name.

According to the document, Kucinich wanted evidence of corruption within the National Transitional Council and, like Welch, any possible links within rebel ranks to al-Qaeda. The document also lists specific information needed to defend Saif Al-Islam, who's currently on the International Criminal Court's most-wanted list, according to Al Jazeera.

Elshayyal said that scattered across the headquarters were smashed frames holding the brother leader's pictures, powerful images which depict Gadhafi's sudden fall from grace. A spokesman for the U.S. State Department told Al Jazeera that David Welch is a private citizen who was on a private trip and that he didn't carry any messages from the U.S. government. Welch didn't responded to Al Jazeera's requests for comment.

Dennis Kucinich issued a statement to the Atlantic Wire stating: Al Jazeera found a document written by a Libyan bureaucrat to other Libyan bureaucrats. All it proves is that the Libyans were reading the Washington Post... I can't help what the Libyans put in their files... Any implication I was doing anything other than trying to bring an end to an unauthorized war is fiction.

 

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