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Viewing cable 09TRIPOLI417, AL-QADHAFI: NO LONGER RELUCTANT TO ENGAGE WITH AFRICOM \

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09TRIPOLI417 2009-05-26 14:02 2011-02-25 00:12 SECRET Embassy Tripoli
Appears in these articles:
http://www.letemps.ch/swiss_papers
VZCZCXRO2956
PP RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHMR RUEHPA RUEHRN
DE RUEHTRO #0417 1461454
ZNY SSSSS ZZH
P 261454Z MAY 09
FM AMEMBASSY TRIPOLI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4853
INFO RUEHZO/AFRICAN UNION COLLECTIVE
RUEHTRO/AMEMBASSY TRIPOLI 5383
SECRET		VZCZCXRO2956\
PP RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHMR RUEHPA RUEHRN\
DE RUEHTRO #0417 1461454\
ZNY SSSSS ZZH\
P 261454Z MAY 09\
FM AMEMBASSY TRIPOLI\
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4853\
INFO RUEHZO/AFRICAN UNION COLLECTIVE\
RUEHTRO/AMEMBASSY TRIPOLI 5383	S E C R E T TRIPOLI 000417 \
 \
SIPDIS \
 \
E.O. 12958: DECL:  5/25/2019 \
TAGS: PREL PTER MOPS LY
SUBJECT: AL-QADHAFI:  NO LONGER RELUCTANT TO ENGAGE WITH AFRICOM \
 \
CLASSIFIED BY: Gene A. Cretz, Ambassador, Embassy Tripoli, \
Department of State. \
REASON: 1.4 (b), (d) \
1. (S) Summary. Libyan leader Muammar al-Qadhafi told visiting \
Commander of U.S. Africa Command General William Ward that Libya \
supported the establishment of common African institutions, such \
as an African Ministry of Defense, and expressed hope that the \
Obama administration would not pursue a policy of military \
intervention in Africa, as he felt a U.S. military presence on \
the continent could be a trigger for terrorism.  Al-Qadhafi said \
he hoped President Obama could travel to Libya in early July to \
address the African Union summit, as well as meet him at the G-8 \
conference in Italy later in the month.  Al-Qadhafi expressed a \
desire for cooperation with U.S. Africa Command in the fields of \
counter-terrorism and counter-piracy. Gen. Ward's meeting with \
Foreign Minister Musa Kusa reported septel.  End Summary. \
 \
2. (S) On the afternoon of May 21, Muammar al-Qadhafi, hosted \
U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) Commander General William "Kip" \
Ward (Gen. Ward) in his tent at the Bab al-Aziziyah complex in \
Tripoli for an meeting that ran slightly over an hour. Also in \
attendance were Secretary of the General People's Committee for \
Foreign Liaison and International Cooperation (GPCFLIC) (Foreign \
Minister) Musa Kusa, Secretary for American Affairs Dr. Ahmad \
Fituri, Ambassador, U.S. Defense Attache, and a member of Gen. \
Ward's staff. \
 \
3. (S) After exchanging pleasantries, al-Qadhafi noted that \
during Gen. Ward's earlier trip to Libya, he had been visiting \
Mauritania, where a political crisis was ongoing.  "Every time \
we put out a fire in Africa, another one breaks out.  We used to \
say this was a US conspiracy, but not anymore."  Al-Qadhafi then \
began a lengthy monologue during which he related the stages of \
governance in Africa from revolutionary liberation, to \
dictatorship, to multi-party elections, concluding that now was \
the time to establish common African institutions, such as a \
Ministry of Defense, that would better represent African \
interests before the world. \
 \
4. (S) Al-Qadhafi turned to U.S. and Chinese involvement on the \
continent, characterizing the Chinese approach as soft, the U.S. \
as hard, and predicting that China would prevail because it does \
not interfere in internal affairs. He criticized what he said \
was a U.S. tendency to place military bases near energy sources, \
observing that the U.S. did this in the Gulf of Guinea, it would \
spark terrorism. Turning to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, \
al-Qadhafi questioned what he characterized as U.S. support for \
Israel at the expense of Palestine, and advised that it would be \
in the best interest of the U.S. to support the Palestinians. \
He cautioned against trusting the advice of Arab leaders in the \
Gulf and Levant and offered to play a role in that region if the \
U.S. desired.  The Leader concluded his remarks by expressing a \
desire for President Obama to come to the African Union Summit \
in Libya in July, and after that meet him in Italy at the G-8 \
conference. \
 \
5. (S) In response to Gen. Ward's profession of respect for the \
sovereignty of African countries, al-Qadhafi said he understood \
the U.S. position, but questioned the U.S. military presence in \
Djibouti, noting military power would be used by extremists to \
justify terror. He then proceeded to identify two sources of \
terrorism, Wahabism and Switzerland. Qadhafi stated that the \
Swiss banking system was used to fund terrorists, and proposed \
that Switzerland be split among its neighboring countries, \
according to language. \
 \
6. (S) On the topic of Somali piracy, al-Qadhafi asserted that \
"foreign entities" had violated Somalia's territorial waters. \
The solution to the problem of Somali piracy was therefore to \
forge an agreement between the countries exploiting Somali \
waters and the pirates.  Al-Qadhafi offered to identify a pirate \
spokesman and broker this agreement. \
 \
7. (S) Al-Qadhafi emphasized that as Libya now presides over the \
AU, there was a possibility for cooperation with AFRICOM in \
combating terrorism in the Sahara and piracy. He said that he \
could deal with "the new America without reservation", now that \
the United States was governed by "a new spirit of change." \
 \
8. (U) This cable was cleared by U.S. Africa Command. \
 \
CRETZ \