Going to archive some info in here for later OP.
What really sucks is I have been waiting and waiting for this all to come out but no US news agency will pick it up and run with it.
Snip; In 2009, the Belgian Walloon Region issued the export licenses FN Herstal needed, and the weapons were shipped to Libya. But in 2011, as the rebels gained ground, the Belgian shipment scattered across the country -- in February 2012, I saw FN F2000 rifles on sale for $5,000. Of course, the weapons proliferation is not limited to just the FN F2000: In November 2011, for example, the authorities of Niger seized a shipment of weapons, consisting of AK assault rifles and FN FAL rifles, on their way from Libya to Mali.
With the end of the Libyan war, many of these weapons began to make their way to the international market. Strife-ridden Gaza, of course, represented an eager market for such armaments: In June 2012, the Egyptian authorities seized Libyan weapons from arms traffickers trying to smuggle them into the tiny coastal enclave.
Without serial numbers to trace, the Libyan scenario remains merely a hypothesis. But the simultaneous presence of AK-103 assault rifles in the al-Quds parade makes it even more plausible. Nic Jenzen-Jones described on his website how the Libyan war was the rare conflict where both weapons appeared simultaneously -- and that the version of the FN F2000 seen in Gaza was similar to that sold to the Libyan army. "The F2000 rifles seen in Libya were sold and equipped with FN Herstal underbarrel 40x46mm grenade launchers, known as the LG1," he wrote. "The F2000s pictured in Gaza also sport LG1s."
Even a year after Qaddafi's fall, the dictator's poisonous legacy continues to live on in conflicts far and wide. Of course, these Belgian-made rifles are not as problematic as MANPADS, which may have also made their way from Libya to Gaza.
But although they won't play a decisive role in the Gaza conflict, they do drive home the helplessness of arms-exporting countries in keeping track of the military equipment they sell. And if Egypt or Libya -- incensed over the Israeli crackdown in Gaza -- decide to turn a blind eye to the arms flow, the problem will only get worse
. It's a cautionary tale for countries looking to gain the edge on faraway battlefields by arming their local allies: In the next war, they might find their own weapons turned against them.
[link to www.foreignpolicy.com
november 21st 2012
Washington's Role in the Renewed Violence in DR Congo Snip;
The outbreak of fighting is also the result of a colossal failure by US foreign policy–makers dating back to the mid-1990s, aided and abetted by an ill-led United Nations peacekeeping force that stood by as the M23 seized Goma
Rwanda borders DR Congo to the east, and is deeply implicated in the renewed fighting. Two UN investigations this year have already found that Rwanda is sustaining the M23 force; the most recent UN report, in October, charges that M23 is actually ultimately commanded by Rwanda’s defense minister, James Kabarebe. Observers in Goma are reporting that M23 is armed with sophisticated weapons, including 120-millimeter mortars and night-vision goggles, which the group could not have acquired on its own.Snip2;
Over the years, Rwanda has continued to intervene in eastern Congo. It claims it is there to prevent the resurgence of the génocidaires, but the former killers are no longer a significant force. Rwanda’s real aim is more venal; it is stealing minerals from eastern Congo, which has significant deposits of gold, cassiterite and coltan. Rwanda’s support for the M23 these days is mainly a cross-border thievery racket, which has been documented by UN inquiries. But the UN itself is also responsible for the tragedy in eastern Congo. The UN has an 18,000-strong multinational peacekeeping force already stationed in the country, including troops right in Goma. The UN force, known as Monusco by its French initials, stood by as M23 invaded and seized the city.
Congolese critics have for years bitterly disparaged Monusco as merely “tourists.” In an October report, the respected International Crisis Group also indicted the UN troops for passivity: “Despite Monusco’s superiority in numbers and firepower, it has not opposed the advance of M23 and it has therefore failed to carry out the essential element of its mandate: to protect the civilian population.”
[link to www.thenation.com