Moscow (GPA) – In the most recent issue of crescent-digital, the author, describing the Libyan conflict wrote: “Moscow’s support for Haftar is a long-term preventive action aimed at ending the potential influence of the Islamic movement, which is in power over Muslims in Russia.”

I am not an expert on Libya, but I can’t agree with the author.

First, the Libyan rebels are a disparate mass, where everyone thinks only of their advantage. Among the “revolutionaries” there is no movement, organization, or party with a clear ideology (such as a Hamas or Hezbollah) or local Islamic political forces United in one coalition with clear goals and objectives (along the lines of the Islamic salvation front in Algeria in the early 90s). The Libyan rebels were not able to form attractive ideas even for their own society, so why should anyone be interested in the actions of the NATO project of the NTC (National Transitional Council)? 

Related: With the Fall of Idlib Inevitable, Erdogan Turns Sights on Libya

Second, the Kremlin has experience working with “political Islam,” an alliance with Iran and its allies, support for Hamas, meetings with the late Morsi, and a breakthrough in relations with the Taliban, all this suggests that Moscow has been trying to keep up with the times for a long time, and therefore they need their own national Islamic component, which could help establish contacts with the Islamic world.

And finally, Muslims in Russia are among the most apolitical segments of the population. The absolute majority of Russian Muslims are indifferent even to their own fate, and even more so they are indifferent to what is happening in the Ummah. Most people practice Islam as a set of ritual actions and do not need anything else. It is my conclusion, as a Muslim in Russia, their apolitical nature is the reason that a significant part of Russian Muslims are not interested in what is happening in Libya or in the Islamic world as a whole.

By the way, the sectarian component is present on both sides of the Libyan conflict.

At the end of the recent crescent digital piece, the author wrote: “if Moscow receives any guarantees from Ankara that the Islamic presence in the Libyan government will not have a negative impact on Russia, the Saudis and the Emirates will be quickly pushed aside and face another regional setback.

“It should be clarified that Moscow does not support a certain side in Libya, its goal is to stabilize the region, which would prevent the spread of radical ideas and strengthen the position of the Americans. For this reason, the Kremlin is open to dialogue with Haftar and the GNA. As for Turkey, in Libya, Erdogan solves exclusively his own problems related to his favorability ratings and political maneuvers to out-nationalist his opponents. It is also important to remember that Turkey is a member of NATO, which means that all its policies are still mostly in Washington’s hands.

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