Charles Featherstone, regular writer at, discusses his disagreement with Eric Margolis‘s doubts about the legitimacy of Libya’s (initial) uprising; how tribal groups within modern states (like Saudi Arabia and Libya) function as “intermediate institutions” that provide a protective barrier between individuals and unbridled state power; how tribal negotiations with Gaddafi could have prevented a Benghazi massacre – without Western intervention; why the CIA’s obvious infiltration of Libya’s rebels does not mean the whole uprising was a covert operation; looking ahead to nation building in yet another country without even rudimentary civil institutions; and a prediction that Israel will step back from the brink of an “extermination” solution to the Palestinian problem.

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