The role-playing in Lybia

There’s no more choice between Serraj and Haftar: which side we need to take in a strife whose prize is not just Tripoli?

It is very easy to commit mistakes in the choices related to international politics, in particular the ones regarding our national security. At the same time, it is instead extremely difficult to openly recognise them when necessary to avoid further troubles. Or, it is even more complicated to try to fix adequately our wrong choices, if there is a way to do so in a way to avoid the consequences of our previous actions. In Libya, since the beginning of the strife between the two factions that – despite the Covid-19 pandemic – are still fighting in the outskirts of Tripoli, we made a tragic mistake supporting the Prime Minister, Serraj. It is necessary, however, stress the fact that we effectuated that choice when it appeared as obliged, especially in order to remain adherent to our traditional foreign policy alignments. Indeed, we have to consider that since the beginning the UN considered the Tripoli’s government as the only legitimate one, and that for us it has always been natural to adhere to the UN position, almost in a rigid and dogmatic way. Even if such a position appeared, since the beginning, in potential contrast with our national interest.

Our strict adherence to the so-called international legal framework, together with other factors, gave us also an hope to effectively play a role guide in the management of this issue. A role that would have been substantial and not merely formal, recognised as such by all the direct and undirect parts in cause. Then, for a while, there is also been present the illusion that our deployment could have been able to defend ENI’s interests, threatened, in theory, by the French company Total. Finally – maybe our most important concern – we thought that our support to Serraj would have consented us to better control the flows of illegal immigrants, who mostly depart from Tripolitania and not from Cyrenaica.

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