People in Libya love peace. But the country has had significant difficulties over the past two decades anyway. Libya is a source of natural resources to western countries, and therefore of modest perceived importance to the United States. The United States therefore used to compete for influence there, by supporting proxies who unsuccessfully attempted to control the government.

Muammar Muhammad Abu Minyar al-Gaddafi ruled Libya until a decade ago. He seemed from media reports to be well liked by other world leaders including in the United States. But the United States treated Gaddafi cautiously anyway. They thought the country might be the source of instability for the United States. NATO started intervening in peaceful Islamic states after the airplane incidents on September 11, 2001. Gaddafi was told to relinquish his nuclear deterrence or face an uncertain future. He perhaps saved Libya from the NATO invasions experienced in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria by acquiescing. But he was later deposed anyway by internal groups supported by NATO. The country attempted to create internal stability ever since.

Russia requested peace talks for Libya at the United Nations almost every year since the end of Gaddafi's rule. China has done more rhetorically for Libyan peace than perhaps any other nation. And peace is very important to Islamic groups that only respond well to that type of encouragement. The population in Libya may hope that NATO stays out of their internal affairs. But NATO can easily have credibility there anyway simply by finally supporting Russia's and China's efforts for peace.

Mohamed Younis Menfi

President of the Presidential Council of the State of Libya

September 2022

Libya had initial challenges forming a government after Gaddafi. There was a security competition there. But the country is evolving successfully. Libya has a democratically elected government with exemplary representation at the United Nations. The government there says they only seek peace.