The ongoing inability of the Libyan government to retain control of its oil-production and export facilities has put the nation into a new crisis with a very unlikely rival.
Libya’s Defense Ministry has issued an authorization for the use of military force against the Morning Glory, a North Korean oil tanker. The ship is docked at the rebel-held port of Es-Sidra, and is being loaded.
The reports are that the Morning Glory has $36 million in oil on board now, which the Libyans declared an “act of piracy.” The rebels have warned any attack on the ship would be a declaration of war against them as well.
The war may have to wait, however, as the Libyan Air Force has openly refused orders to bomb the tanker, with officials saying they believe the Es-Sidra problem is a political issue, and not something the military should try to intervene in.