To judge the propaganda from the pro-imperial media, look at this from yesterday’s NPR, April 28:
When Gadhafi was in charge of the [Dhiba] border post, Libyans weren’t allowed to cross into Tunisia. . . .
That contrasts a LOT with this:
Libya: Tunisia Closes Dhiba Border Post
21 April , 17:45
(ANSAmed) – TUNIS, APRIL 21 – The Tunisian authorities have closed the border crossing at Dhiba. The decision was taken after Libyan rebels attacked the post this morning, forcing Gaddafi loyalists to flee towards the border with Tunisia, where some of them crossed over into the country and were promptly arrested. (ANSAmed).
And with this, a report Microsoft Translator-ated from (at last!) a reasonably even-handed source, the French language La Presse de Tunisie:
Massive influx of Libyan refugees
April 19, 2011
… Refugees continue to arrive en masse from the Libyan cities located in the Jabal Al-Gharbi, fleeing from the intensive bombing which destroyed many houses.
Over the last two days, their number has reached 3,000, including women and children.
A total of 11,000 Libyans crossed the border post of Dhiba last week.
Here’s three more NPR pro-imperial propaganda test sentences:
Refugees crossing the border say Gadhafi’s forces are terrorizing people any way they can. They are gunning down flocks of sheep just to wreck livelihoods, the refugees say. But they say Arabs and Berbers are now united in their opposition to Gadhafi.
Funny how even pro-rebel Al Jazeera doesn’t have that “gunning down flocks of sheep” stuff or the classic pro-imperial “Arabs and Berbers are now united” hacksterism. Could it have a lower tolerance than NPR for what sounds like complete cheerleading and/or demonizing bull%#t? Jazeera’s source, the UNHCR, says the refugees are escaping from our war (that the imperial powers have massively escalated and refuse to let the Libyans stop), not from one side or another:
4:33pm [April 29] The fighting at the Dehiba-Wazin border crossing has stopped the flow of refugees from Libya’s Western Mountains, seeking refuge in neighbouring Tunisia, according to the UNHCR.
The UN’s human rights agency warned in a statement on Friday:
UNHCR is very concerned that people fleeing Libya could be caught in the cross-fire as government and opposition forces battle for control in the border area. …
Another Le Presse report, this from April 26, confirms the very probably real reason the refugees cross into Tunisia (one that makes a lot of common sense), “fear of the renewal of military operations between the two parties in conflict on the Libyan side of the border.”:
An eyewitness in the locality of Dhehiba [Dhiba] has indicated, in a telephone communication with the correspondent of the TAP agency, that the last days were marked by the escape of more than 3000 Libyan citizens, originating in Wazen, only 3 km from the Dhehiba border crossing point, who entered into Tunisian territory with large herds of sheep and cattle. …
These persons, including women and children, suffer from a very difficult situation. A sense of anxiety prevails in the locality, with the fear of the renewal of military operations between the two parties in conflict on the Libyan side of the border area.
In addition, the increase in the number of Libyan citizens residing in several localities of Tataouine governorate, and their membership of the two parties to the conflict in Libya, animate other fears, in particular the possibility of clashes between them.
Today, Le Presse reports on a large group of Libyan refugees who prefer to take refuge in the Tunisian desert rather than near “Libyan insurgents and their families.” You’ll never get this perspective from NPR:
Des familles libyennes se réfugient dans le désert tunisien
Libyan Families Take Refuge in the Tunisian Desert
April 29, 2011
A thousand Libyans originating from Wezen (Libya), village located about 3 km from the Dhehiba border crossing point, have preferred to take refuge in the Tunisian desert camps and urban areas. They left their homes after the takeover by the insurgents from their village and the point of border crossing on the Libyan side.
Security sources and eyewitnesses reported to the correspondent of agency TAP that the Libyans have preferred to settle near the localities of Tunisian Martba, Om Zougar and El Ouni, to stay away from Libyan insurgents and their families in the towns and villages in the region of Tataouine and the camps of refugees.
Moreover, citizens of Tataouine told the correspondent of agency TAP that the Libyans continued to flow to the region to escape the war. They have expressed their fear that this situation generates conflicts, either between the insurgents and the troops of the Gaddafi regime or at the level of the refugees in the camps, emphasizing the imperative to establish a distance from each other.
Aid is provided by the population, the host committees and civil society to all Libyan refugees without distinction.
Donate to the UNHCR fund for the refugees from our war.