Field Marshall Khalifa Haftar, head of the Libyan National Army, has stated that former Libyan ruler Muammar Gaddafi's son, Saif Islam, "is free and in a safe place." Haftar further said he welcomed the idea of the younger Gaddafi playing some sort of political role in Libya's future.
In an interview (Arabic) with Al-Hayat newspaper, Haftar also stressed that he had no problems with moderate Muslim Brotherhood members but could never deal with the extremist elements.
The recent talks in Paris between Haftar and UN-backed Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj were little more than a "show," an attempt to stage manage an impression of a Libyan unity government. It failed!
The Libyan Muslim Brotherhood's Executive's rejected all communiques from Paris despite the olive branch extended to it by Haftar.
The United States, UK, and the UN are egging on their regional and international allies including France to finish the job in Libya to totally discount any thought of allowing Saif a role in the future of Libya. This new colonial order is afraid of his growing popularity.
To the West, Saif al-Islam is the poster child of the old order. The US and the UN want Saif al-Islam on trial at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague also to isolate and silence him. Quite simply he knows too much about the West's past duplicity.
Additionally, Saif al-Islam is wrongfully being held responsible for his father’s actions, from Lockerbie, which ironically his father was not involved in, to being part of the alleged plot of his father with Qatar to kill the then Saudi King Abdullah.
The West has become skeptical of Haftar mainly due to his closeness to Russia, however both Haftar and Saif Gaddafi are popular with the Libyan people.
It is likely the West would prefer Haftar out of the picture, but his recent battlefield successes make that look unlikely...for now.
With tribal support, Saif al-Islam Gaddafi could contribute to a Mandela style reconciliation process. But the West would then be forced to face that its "liberation" of Libya did not produce the kind of result it foresaw. And the West cannot stand to be shown to be wrong when it comes to its "regime change" operations, even when its consistent failures are impossible to ignore.
For immediate purposes, the West appears to have scored a major coup by setting the stage for Libya to spit-out Saif al-Islam right into the open jail cell in the ICC despite the lack of evidence against him. The ICC is merely a tool of the American dominated UN and Gaddafi’s son, the victim.
Will the US and its allies succeed in their conspiracy? And what happens next in Libya if they do?