Libya yes, Libya no

(To Denise Serangelo)

A little more than 350km from the Italian coasts, a corpse resulting from yet another failed Western intervention runs the risk of becoming our problem too. The State of Libya is all that foreign policy and military diplomacy have always avoided.

It 'a riot of ethnic groups and fighting, a civil war that has lost everything, where there are no flags but many interests and where everyone is trying to grab something.

Libya is the chaos of geopolitics, fertile ground for any business the market of illegality can offer to this world: trafficking in arms, reselling the black energy market and as if a trafficking in human beings meticulously organized could be worse.

Split in two, this pseudo-country has an internationally recognized government, the result of the 25 June 2014 elections, led by Abdullah Al Thinni and based in the city of Tobruk.

On the other side, the revolutionary militias of Misrata who are stationed in Tripoli and think they have to defend the country from the newly elected government that according to them threatens the revolution started in 2011.

A minefield of mutual accusations from which it will be difficult to get out.

Given the unsolvable skein, our country - which does not seem able to resist the emphasis on participating in the dances - has recently declared its intention to place itself at the head of an international coalition to stop the advance of the Islamic Caliphate in Libya.

The idea, launched as if we were playing a giant version of Risiko, has shaken the Foreign and Defense Dicasteries that in doubt have supported the Government without explaining however materially how this coalition - we talk about figures around 5000uomini only for the 'Italy - should operate.

Europe has not pronounced itself, passing the ball to the UN Security Council, which will have to decide, with its own time, whether to form a coalition to be sent to Libya.

In the meantime, public opinion has again split, creating a divergence of opinion that has not been seen for some time.

Most seem to share the interventionism of Renziano and fear for an imminent collapse of Italy in terrorist attack, the other part obscured and often accused of superficiality looks at the situation with less alarmist but equally worried eyes, hoping for a solution that provides the use of the military component only in a small part.

Italy returning to Libya is a nightmare that many analysts would not want to face.

In reality, we have to deal with a fragile and unstable political situation.

The ministries involved in Foreign Affairs and Defense do not enjoy - unfortunately - a good state of health in our country, have always been very incisive, often absent or worse still victims of chat bar that report on official statements.

The chaotic and fragmented situation of Libya requires a strategic guide to enlightened minds, who think outside the box and have a clear picture of the geopolitical situation of the Mediterranean.

It is not the usual sterile polemics and an end in itself but a fact that we have before our eyes for decades, if we want to take the leadership of an operation of this magnitude, with the eyes of the whole world focused on our troops, not we can certainly venture like the Brancaleone army.

The innovative aspects of the threat and the multiple analyzes have a high level of complexity, it is easy for those of terrorism and geopolitics who have not made the career fall victim to the decisions taken "belly" and even to be able to fully understand what really we're talking about.

The war, in this case, either we know how to deal with it or we become victims.

I would exclude a priori the already widely used option of delegating our political failings to the military spheres as happened 15 years ago for Afghanistan.

This time instead of starting with decades of inactivity on the shoulders and poor materials we risk finding ourselves catapulted into the midst of armies that enjoy unassailable reputations in their countries, with a very strong leadership and that have not suffered phases of operational stalemate and even less scary cuts to their Defense division.

It would also be foolish not to consider the rules of engagement that prefer to wink at public opinion rather than satisfy the tactical needs of men in the field.

The guerrillas have an illegal market and techniques learned from the same manuals written by us Westerners, have stocked up any small or large caliber weapon and pieces of artillery that the Soviet and American army left in the occupied territories. Use of IEDs and planning of complex attacks are the daily bread for those of the war who have made their reason for living, making massacres in the ranks of our armies so used to technology but little real combat, the one where in the end there are deaths on consciousness.

At distance of 15anni from the beginning of the mission in Afghanistan this army of ours is missing everything, except the desire to demonstrate what it is worth if we only allowed him to do his job with the appropriate means.

Instead we persist in thinking that what we need is enough to compete with contingents trained as machines and with science-fiction supplies that remain a distant mirage for us.

In our ranks, the means are lacking, even the most basic ones for the city, not even to say that we are not ready for Libya nor for any other scenario imaginable. Procuring means in loan for use or buying new projects would give the coup de grace to the finances of the state.

Starting a mission - of any kind - foresees to cope with mammoth costs, open a mission in which Italy should be the spearhead and even in command is not even remotely imaginable.

For these and a thousand other reasons Italy can not leave for Libya without having to deal with the inefficiency and ineptitude in dealing with the situation.

We are not ready, we will want but we can not. We should but we do not want to.

The colonial past in Libya - unlike what happens in Somalia - certainly does not help.

The Libyans seem to have a good memory and certainly welcome the proceeds coming from the Bel Paese in the form of payments for energy supplies, but have already made clear their unfavorable position about the Italian intervention.

Colonialism is not one of the best pages in Libyan history and the Italians have not shone for far-sightedness, the death of the Libyan Cyrenaic religious and guerrilla Omar al-Mukhtar who led the anti-colonial guerrilla warfare in the 1920s can be considered an oversight by us but for the Libyans is a gesture that is still waiting to be avenged properly.

What has been said so far might seem to be in the eyes of the most intransigent a declaration of surrender, a renunciation of one's love of country.

On the contrary, realizing our weaknesses and especially addressing them by taking action means first of all we will not send to the slaughter of young soldiers who make enormous sacrifices for this country, do not be guided by fear means starting from the bottom to delegitimize the climate of terror - especially the media - that It is created around the Mediterranean crisis.

So how should and can we react against the obscenity and violence that enters our homes every day?

In the first analysis it is strongly desirable - thanks to a detailed and meticulous intelligence work on the field - to eliminate those sources of financial support with which terrorists buy arms, work force and feed their terror machine.

Through targeted bombardment of oil wells under the control of the Caliphate and other dangerous factions, their economic capacity from the foundations would be undermined.

Surely this second option has a major impact for us Westerners, a refinery or a pipeline costing millions and destroying them is a painful but necessary solution that involves minimal risks for those who carry out the action. Even from the point of view of losses defined as "collateral" - the so-called civilian victims - this option sees them reduced to a minimum.

In the second analysis it is essential to reduce and stop - in a perpetual way - the trafficking of human beings. These victims are used as real lenders of the same war they are fleeing from.

In this case the Navy ships would intervene - even here possibly not only the Italian ones - which would hinder the departure from the Libyan ports of the barges of hope presumably headed towards the coasts of our country.

With a second targeted intervention of mixed groups belonging to the special departments of the countries involved, it could be possible to stop and stop the departures before they are organized, taking literally the surveillance of the most important ports.

These two hypotheses of alternative intervention must be supported at the National level, by a clear and decisive policy and by a truthful communication on the conditions in Libya and in the Mediterranean. Only through the awareness of what is happening, without creating alarmism and unnecessary concerns, using the logic before the weapons we can minimize if we do not defeat a threat such as that of terrorism and in particular pay attention to the Libyan chaos.

Embarking on a war that we could never win would have the effect of making us vulnerable already more than we are right now but above all would avoid seeing the already sadly known scenes of pain for the arrival of the coffins wrapped in the tricolor, the coffins that they contain someone's child, someone's husband, boyfriend or father.

When it comes to war, war with a capital G, we can not afford to be superficial.

We can not discard decisions only because they are difficult or because they involve important sacrifices, if we want to stand up to terrorism with our heads held high it is imperative to use decision and firmness, alternatively we can only wait for laxity and fear to lead us to capitulate.