Center for Strategic Assessment and forecasts

Autonomous non-profit organization

Home / Defence and security / / Articles
Information suppression of Colonel Gaddafi and his army
Material posted: Publication date: 02-09-2011

An essential part of any modern military campaigns involving the armed forces of leading countries of the world have become information and psychological operations. Along with intelligence they are one of the main types of combat operations of the troops and eventually make an important contribution to the achievement of the ultimate military goals.

Using successful information and psychological action is possible not only to win over world public opinion, but also to ensure the implementation of specific operational and tactical tasks in the area of hostilities. Was no exception and the ongoing military operation of NATO in Libya, "Unified protector" (Unified Protector, "the United defender").

 

THE TRANSFORMATION OF THE UN RESOLUTION

The decision to conduct a military operation codenamed "unified protector" was accepted by the ambassadors of all countries – members of NATO on March 27, 2011 (prior to that the certain activities for the implementation of UN security Council resolution on Libya as part of operation "Odyssey Dawn" was carried out by forces of the African and European commands, the US with support from individual NATO countries).

According to official statements by the representatives of the Alliance, the operation is carried out in accordance with resolution 1973 of the UN security Council dated 17 March 2011, which calls for an immediate end to all attacks against civilians and authorizes all necessary measures taken to protect the civilian population and places of his residence under threat of attack in Libya. NATO took over the implementation of all military aspects of the UN resolution.

Command of the operation is vested in the Lieutenant-General of the canadian forces Charles Bouchard, who previously served as Deputy commander of the Joint NATO command (headquarters – Naples, Italy). Charles Bouchard serves in the Armed forces of Canada since 1974, was appointed Deputy commander of the Joint command aerospace defense of North America (NORAD).

On 19 March 2011 military forces from France, UK, USA, Italy and Canada, later joined by another 10 countries – members of NATO launched a military operation against units of the Libyan army that support Muammar Gaddafi. It should be noted that foreign interference in the internal Libyan conflict was partly sanctioned by the UN security Council resolutions 1970 and 1973, which called for the creation of a no-fly zone over Libya.

Libya due to their own political and economic interests, leading Western countries unanimously supported one of the parties to the conflict – forces which were opposed to the legitimate leadership of the country. The proposed UN "all necessary measures" by the United States and NATO were swiftly and decisively transformed mainly in regular "pinpoint strikes with high-precision guided weapons" at various government facilities in Libya.

The main purpose of missile strikes and air raids of the international coalition, according to statements by officials of the Alliance is the destruction of air defense, military bases and locations of ground-based armored vehicles of the Libyan army. In parallel, NATO forces continue to strike at Gaddafi-controlled military units.

Already during the initial stage of the operation, coalition forces were able to solve most tasks set before them combat tasks. As stated at the end of March this year, the commander of one of aviation group Vice-Marshal of the British air force Greg Bagwell, "Libyan air force no longer exists in fact, integrated air defence system and command and communication network is weakened to such an extent that our planes are flying over Libya in almost complete security." The only fighter that the allies lost in the first week of hostilities in the Libyan sky, according to official data, crashed due to technical problems.

The destruction of the forces of NATO almost all Libyan aircraft and a significant portion of armored vehicles, the government army has lost the superiority in military-technical equipment that has virtually leveled the enemy forces. The armed conflict has turned into a traditional positional warfare in the style of the First world war, when the warring parties unable to strike a decisive blow, limited to local actions on the mastery of individual settlements.

 

DIRECT GROUND INTERVENTION AND VIOLATION OF THE EMBARGO

We should not exclude the possibility of achieving certain political and economic goals by carrying out a NATO ground operation in Libya. According to reports, the Alliance has developed appropriate plans. Apparently there are some practical activities under the ground. This is, in particular, shows a gradual increase in the number of Western military specialists in Libya.

For example, in Benghazi, the capital of the anti-government forces, a unit of British special forces, soldiers who have already participated in battles against the government army. The Ministry of foreign Affairs of great Britain announced that the team working in Benghazi British experts would soon be replenished with "experienced military officers". It was noted that "additional staff will enable the government of the United Kingdom to strengthen ties with the National transitional Council (NTC)", they will advise the NTC on how to improve the military organization, creation of communication systems and logistics.

And the American TV channel "Fox", referring to Colonel U.S. army retired David hunt, said that "the American military and CIA agents are in Libya since the beginning of March". American experts collect information for the guidance of aviation coalition on the target. They have also embarked on the training of military specialists from among the local residents. Interestingly, sending scouts to Libya authorized personally by Barack Obama, whose powers allow the CIA to conduct special operations abroad.

At the end of March this year, the Pentagon threw in the Mediterranean sea 4 thousand Marines from Virginia. In readiness for the landing is also brainwashy off the coast of Libya the French helicopter carrier "Mistral".

One of the main tasks of the NATO military operation "Unified protector" was to ensure the embargo on arms supplies to Libya. For this the allies had allocated 25 warships and submarines, 50 destroyers and reconnaissance aircraft. The NATO ships are allowed only to patrol and inspect suspicious vessels, but they cannot attack the Libyan territory. However, NATO is highly selective to ensure embargo on the weapons.

So, in June of this year in the area of Benghazi, French aircraft dropped military supplies, including machine guns, grenade launchers and anti-tank guided missiles, designed for anti-government forces. Under the pressure of facts, the General staff of the Armed forces of France was forced to confirm the delivery of weapons to the Libyan rebels. This is a flagrant violation of the resolutions of the UN security Council. The Russian foreign Ministry demanded explanations from Paris.

In the General staff of the armed forces of France recognized the fact of supply, however, has announced that anti-tank systems was not on the list of goods. The representative of the French defense Ministry Colonel Thierry Burcher announced that Paris had decided to supply weapons, protective equipment and ammunition to the population of some areas of Libya which are very dangerous for civilians the situation. In his words, "it was obvious that the people in this country defenceless and that they seriously threatened Qaddafi's forces". Earlier, French defense Minister Gerard Longuet said that the supply of weapons is the only possible way to implement the mandate of the UN security Council, which gives international force to take all necessary measures to protect civilians.

The Ambassador of France to the UN Gerard Araud expressed the view that military supplies to the Libyan rebels do not contradict the resolutions of the UN security Council. The diplomat explained that in the document there is one item that allows you to ignore the embargo on arms sales to Libya, to protect civilians. Aro says: "We decided to provide the civilian population with weapons of self-defense, because we believed that it is under threat". Striking openly demonstrated by Western cynicism and brazen confidence in full impunity.

Note that France became the first NATO country to recognize the fact of deliveries of military cargo to the Libyan rebels. Meanwhile on sending the rebels equipment for law enforcement agencies was announced in London. The British foreign Secretary William Hague said that in the list have bullet-proof vests, police uniforms and communications equipment to restore order in opposition-controlled regions of the country. There were also reports of supply of arms to the Libyan rebels Italian military, which was categorically refuted by the Italian foreign Ministry. According to the official representative of the foreign Ministry of Italy, Libya are not weapons, but "certain equipment to defend themselves".

 

THE TECHNIQUES OF PSYCHOLOGICAL OPERATIONS IN THE PENTAGON. RADIO

A detailed analysis of the messages of global media and network resources leads to the conclusion that during the NATO operation "Unified protector" coalition forces are actively applied forces and means of psychological operations (PSYOPS). One of the important components of the military campaign of NATO against Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi and the Armed forces of the country is JI suppression of the will of the enemy to resist.

The PSO doctrine NATO AJP-3.7 of 2002 defines them as "planned psychological activities in peace, crisis and war directed at hostile, friendly and neutral objects influence to ensure attitudes and behaviours that contribute to achieving political and military objectives".

The absolute leader in the sphere of conducting psychological warfare in the present time are the USA, the armed forces have the most powerful, highly trained and well equipped units in the PRS received a wealth of combat experience during numerous armed conflicts in all regions of the globe.

According to the Charter field US army FM 3-05.30, PSYOPS seeks to change the behavior of objects of influence to support U.S. national interests. Their main goal is to reduce the potential moral and psychological stability of the enemy. The US actively used units PSYOPS in combat in Korea, Vietnam, Grenada, Panama, Somalia, the Persian Gulf, in Haiti, in Yugoslavia and now in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya.

In the framework of measures on further increasing efficiency of forces and means of the PSO in June 2010 in the U.S. armed forces, the term Psychological Operations (PSYOP, PSYOPS) are replaced by the term Military Information Support Operations (MISO), which can be translated as "the operation of information support of actions of the troops".

Dutch radio Amateurs, a former officer of the Armed forces of the Netherlands HB Roy, March 20, intercepted the negotiations of the aircraft EC-130J "Commando solo" from structure 193 of the third air wing of the U.S. special operations (under the command of the air force National guard of Pennsylvania, harrisburg airport). The plane with tail number 00-1934 and Callsign Steel 74 was in Libya and led radio frequency 6877 kHz in Arabic, English and French. Radio broadcasts addressed to the port employees and the crews of merchant ships and warships to Libya, led a propaganda campaign against the Gaddafi regime, accusing him of violating UN resolutions.

So, in the radio message from the Board stated: "Libyan sailors, the orders you receive are unlawful, the Qadhafi regime violates the UN resolution about the end of hostilities in your country. Don't climb on your ships, go with them. Any vessel attempting to leave port, would be immediately attacked and destroyed. Go back to your families, in your homes you'll be safe".

Information published by the Dutch radio, were later indirectly confirmed during a press conference the chief of the joint staff of the armed forces of the US Vice-Admiral bill Gortney, who reported that coalition forces in Libya are "special planes".

On 27 March the radio was again intercepted the broadcast, presumably from the aircraft "Commando solo", in Arabic and English on a frequency of 405 kHz 10 repeat, already passed earlier instructions banning the exit of ships from the ports. Additionally, the Libyan government troops ordered to cease resistance against the coalition forces, "not to kill his fellow citizens" to lay down their arms and "return home to your families". In the text broadcast to ground units of the Libyan army, included the following: "Immediately leave their positions. Qaddafi's regime is violating the UN resolution about the end of hostilities in your country. If you immediately leave the position, you will not be harmed. Don't try to jam our transmission."

Propaganda radio programs that were broadcast by the PSO NATO on the frequencies used by the Armed forces of Libya, solve specific tactical tasks. An example is the transfer, reading: "you have a choice... to Build a peaceful Libya for the future of their country and families or airstrikes will continue... no one has the right to turn in hell the life of his people... Stop trying to fight against its own people... the Government of Gaddafi has lost control...".

In the second half of may this year, NATO forces conducted a series of radio broadcasts to units of the Libyan army in the city of Zintan and Yafran. Command of the Armed forces of Libya have been indoctrinated with the idea of "criminal activities" of the Gaddafi regime, they were required to cease hostilities in the area of specific localities. Otherwise, NATO threatened the commanders of the Libyan army by the International Tribunal.

In the programs for soldiers emphasis on the emotional psychological impact. Tragic female voice asked the Libyan soldier: "Why, my son... why are you killing our people?" A crying child saying, "Daddy, I need you. I don't want you to kill children. I don't want you to kill other fathers. Children need their fathers. Dad, stop fighting, please, go home! I'm waiting for you."

In accordance with the waste tactic, 193-wing of the U.S. special operations alternately changes from one of six EC-130J (EC-130E) "Commando Solo", equipped broadcasting complex PSYOPS airborne, around the clock performing the broadcasting of programs outreach impact. This unit provides radio and television broadcasting to the troops and population of the enemy in the meter and decimeter ranges, and inhibits the control and communications systems of the enemy and collect intelligence information. 193rd the wing took an active part in the operations of U.S. forces in Southeast Asia, Grenada, Haiti, Panama, the Persian Gulf, Kosovo and Afghanistan. In Libya there is yet no evidence of persistent psychological effects on the population and personnel of the Armed forces of Libya to suppress their will to resist. Presumably in the operation "Unified protector" involved only two aircraft "Commando solo". According to some reports, the Libyan side has attempted to hinder the propaganda of NATO broadcasts by jamming on the identified broadcast frequencies.

 

FLYERS

Along with broadcasting one of the main forms of information-psychological influence during carrying out PSYOPS is printed propaganda. Aviation coalition has repeatedly distributed leaflets over populated areas and positions of government troops in Libya. Very often these activities have been undertaken in the area of the local fighting near the city of Misratah.

The content was developed by authorities of the NATO PSYOP printed promotional materials the following:

  • the intimidation of Libyan soldiers receiving death threats, induce them to cease hostilities, desertion, abandonment of weapons and military equipment during the retreat;
  • discrediting Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, show the "illegality and criminality" of his actions, depriving him of the support of the broad masses of the population and the military;
  • the propaganda of the military superiority of NATO forces and showing the inevitable defeat of the Libyan regime and the futility of resistance.

The leaflets, written in Arabic, are quite simple (according to experts, even primitive) propaganda materials calling for "stop the attacks against Libyan civilians". Calls to "stop the attacks" in the leaflets combined with threats "...or you will be destroyed".

On one of the leaflets depicted as unmanned aircraft destroying Libyan tanks. On the front there is a picture of the drone and its purpose, and the back is already burning tank with the broken air strike tower. Such type of images are accompanied by texts along the lines of: "You are not able to withstand modern weapons and NATO's superiority in the air. Continued attacks on civilians may cause your death". Or for example: "Leave your position and your weapons. Go back home to her family. Stop attacks on Libyan civilians or you will be destroyed!"

According to the representative of military command of the operation "Unified protector" Mike Bracken, by mid-may 2011 aviation coalition distributed over the territory of Libya more than 14 million leaflets. At the same time, in his opinion, to assess the results of NATO's efforts in the psychological war in Libya is not yet possible: we Have no ground forces in Libya to check it out".

You should pay attention to some interesting facts. In may, about 400 thousand of leaflets were distributed over Tripoli with transport aircraft C-130J of the 28th regiment of the Italian air force. Discharge was performed at a height of 7 thousand meters. The leaflet was an appeal to the Libyan people from Benghazi-based NTC of Libya. The text of the message read: "Libya is one and its capital is Tripoli. Today we ask you to make the right and wise decision and join. To join our revolution. Let's build Libya without Gaddafi. United, free, democratic Libya". It is noted that the Italian air force carried out the DCA event by distributing leaflets over the capital of a foreign country for the first time after the same action over Vienna in 1918.

Not without embarrassment. In the middle of June, NATO aircraft carried out "salimovna" positions of government troops near the city of Misratah. On the leaflet was a picture of a helicopter and a burning tank. The inscription in Arabic reads: "When you see these helicopters, it will be too late. Will have nowhere to hide. If you continue to threaten civilians, you will be destroyed". For some reason, leaflets were dropped to the West of the City near Zlitan, where the position of the anti-government forces. As a result, the rebels in droves left the newly captured positions and retreated. Their commander later explained that he was in full confidence that the leaflets warn of impending NATO strikes on the rebels, because "leaflets were dropped on us, and the positions of Libyan government forces were very far away."

The main way of distribution of leaflets is aviation reset, with the help of propaganda bombs and special containers with fighter-bombers F-16. In addition, it can be used transport aircraft C-130 and helicopters. In this regard, military experts pay special attention to sending US in April to participate in the military operation in Libya unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVS). There is a high probability of working out in Libya, the application of some types of UAVS in the interests of the DCA. The Pentagon began active development on the use of UAVS in the interests of the PSO in the beginning of 2000-ies. This project was called Leaflet Delivery System/Wind Supported Air Delivery System (LDS/WSADS, the system for the delivery of leaflets/air delivery system glider type). Developed by the canadian company the world's first cargo unmanned aircraft system-glider has received the code name CQ-IOA WSADS, the apparatus is designed to perform special DCA (the landing of the cargo, the accuracy of salimovna) with a possible launch in the air with aircraft C-130 and C-17.

 

COMPUTER NETWORKS AND TV CHANNELS

PSYOPS specialists the UK has sent out text messages by email and made phone calls to personal and service numbers of the officers of the Libyan armed forces. According to the newspaper the Daily Mail, a list of mobile phone numbers belonging to the higher military leadership of Libya, were transferred to the foreign intelligence service MI6. The content of these messages was the recommendation to discontinue support of their "compromised and doomed to failure the leader" and try to convince influential Libyans to the side of the opposition. The messages included direct threats: "we Have GPS co-ordinates of your command post. These coordinates are programmed into the missile Storm Shadow. What are you going to do?" Previously, such method of information-psychological influence was used against government forces in Iraq, where it proved its effectiveness.

In addition, using the latest cybernetic technology was carried out operative actions in closed government computer networks, and telecommunications systems. Technical penetration in Libya has reached such an extent, that at any moment the basic life support systems of the country can be paralyzed by one click on the computer. This will stop the power plant will stop running water will bring up the transport. At the same time continuing secret contacts with the leaders of Libyan tribes, which promise a large financial help in exchange for refusal of support of Gaddafi.

Given the experience of recent military campaigns of the USA and NATO, we can assume that in PSO involving units of the 4th group military information support the U.S. armed forces, the 15th PSYOPS group of great Britain, troops of PSO allied country (e.g. Italy), as well as aircraft EC-130J 193 th wing air force NG US. It can be assumed that on the basis of the African command U.S. army camp Lemonnier (Djibouti) is now deployed units of the 6th regional battalion of the 4th group VIO USA, whose main task is to ensure that the operations in Libya, Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as (possibly) in Iran.

The content of the strategic information operations against the Gaddafi regime is reduced to the formation of public opinion about the "crime" of the regime and in favor of the decisions of the UN security Council and the League of Arab States and the efforts of the international coalition for the resolution of the Libyan crisis.

You can draw Parallels with the information support of foreign military intervention in Iraq in 2003 and the relevant methods of manipulation of global public opinion (e.g., the "demonization" of the image of the leader of the country, messages about what is happening in her humanitarian disaster, etc.). Glorification in the media of anti-government forces – "freedom fighters" of Libya is very similar to the techniques used in the past to the CIA for approval in the global public consciousness a positive image of the Afghan Mujahideen and the Nicaraguan contras.

To suppress advocacy capacity regularly Libya NATO strikes on satellite antennas of the Libyan state television. For example, on 30 July, NATO struck surgical strikes and also disabled three ground-based satellite transmitting antenna in Tripoli. According to the official representative of command of the Alliance Colonel Roland Lavoie, the strike was carried out in accordance with resolution 1973 of the UN security Council to take away Gaddafi's ability to use satellite television as a means to intimidate the Libyan people and incite acts of violence. In turn, Libya accused NATO systematic destruction of the infrastructure of telecommunication systems in the country.

Chairman of the Libyan company of communications and technology Mohammad bin Ayad said on air of the state TV channel "Gian" that all the objects that were attacked, were not used for military purposes. In some areas of Libya due to NATO action violated cell and landline telephone.

According to official data of the military leadership of the operation, since its start, the aircraft of NATO countries, Sweden and Qatar have made several thousand sorties, destroying hundreds of units of military equipment, ammunition depots and headquarters of the government troops. According to official figures of the Libyan government for the victims of NATO's actions, have died 1108 civilians, injured 4537 residents of the country. These figures are much bigger than the number of victims in the internal political conflict in Libya before the NATO operation "Unified protector". Interested in whether anyone in NATO is the answer to the question: how many more Libyans will have to pay with their lives for "the defence of the people of Libya," the Alliance?

 

Vladimir Akhmadullin

Source: http://nvo.ng.ru/wars/2011-09-02/1_kaddafi.html


RELATED MATERIALS: Defence and security