The United States and Libya
Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi has aggravated the United States for more than two decades, ever since he began using his country's oil revenues to harass enemies, sponsor terrorism, and export his "revolution." In the 1970s American officials expressed their diplomatic disapproval. In the 1980s they used unilateral economic and military sanctions to punish and, they hoped, oust him. In the 1990s they resigned themselves to isolating and containing him, using the limited Lockerbie-related UN sanctions to gain the support of a reluctant Europe.
By the mid- 1990s a de facto transatlantic compromise on Libya had emerged, in which a complex array of sanctions kept Libya on the sidelines of regional and world politics but allowed its oil to flow onto international markets. Then domestic political developments led the United States to embark on a new anti-Qaddafi crusade, threatening the imposition of secondary sanctions against Libya's European economic partners in order to prevent new investment. Libya, however, actually played only a minor role in the ensuing transatlantic dispute. The real battles between the United States and its European allies were
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Publication information: Book title: Transatlantic Tensions:The United States, Europe, and Problem Countries. Contributors: Richard N. Haass - Editor. Publisher: Brookings Institution. Place of publication: Washington, DC. Publication year: 1999. Page number: 140.
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