Florence Gaub at Lewes Speakers Festival22 Jul 2018 – 16.15 - 17.30
In March 2011, NATO launched a mission hitherto entirely unthinkable: to protect civilians against Libya’s ferocious regime, solely from the air. NATO had never operated in North Africa, or without troops on the ground; it also had never had to move as quickly as it did that spring. It took seven months, 25,000 air sorties, 7,000 combat strike missions, and 3,100 maritime hailings for Tripoli to fall.
This talk tells, for the first time, the whole story of this international drama. It spans the hallways of the United Nations in New York, NATO Headquarters in Brussels and, crucially, the two operational epicentres: the Libyan battlefield, and Joint Force Command Naples. Gaub offers a comprehensive exploration of both the war’s progression and the many challenges NATO faced, from its extremely rapid planning and limited understanding of Libya and its forces, to training shortfalls and the absence of post-conflict planning. This is a long-awaited account of the Libyan war: one that truly considers all the actors involved.
Florence Gaub is a senior analyst at the EU Institute for Security Studies; previously, she was employed at NATO Defence College.
Q&A session will follow.