Tribalism in Libya’s civil war is a powerful dynamic that must be analyzed and understood before endeavoring foresight. Libya comprises 140 tribes, of which an estimated 30 to 40 have political influence, making it “one of the most tribal nations in the Arab world” (Kurczy and Hinshaw, The Christian Science Monitor, February 24, 2011; Varvelli, ISPI, May 2013). As a result, if a few or many of them side with one or the other warring groups, then this will impact the war. Tribal identity and its product of favoritism are dynamics that can have a profound effect on political allegiances (see section on Creating Grievances). Because tribes are inclusive and often have extended familial ties, they are naturally predisposed to favoritism... Read More
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About the author: Jon Mitchell (Ma)

He is an independent researcher and writer pursuing his MA in Public Policy – International Affairs from Liberty University, U.S.. He has contributed to a political-economic analysis report for a non-profit international organization, compiled an unofficial analysis report on Boko Haram for a U.S. Congressional Committee, and writes articles for Foreign Policy Journal. While interning with the Hudson Institute, he researched critical regional security issues and analyzed complex international challenges in their Center for Political-Military Analysis.