To many Libyan households, the top security threat plaguing their daily lives isn’t the risk of being caught in the crossfire between contending militias, falling victim to a jihadi group, or being kidnapped for ransom. A more unrelenting consequence of Libya’s dysfunctional politics is its monetary crisis. The principal manifestations—chronic shortage of dinar banknotes, along with a weak valuation of the Libyan currency in the black market—first emerged in 2014. Unlike the ongoing civil war, which also began in 2014, the monetary crisis has consistently intensified through the months.
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Editor’s Note: Energy markets are at the core of many national security debates. Whether it’s a discussion about Iran’s nuclear program, the importance of Libya, or China’s role in the world, questions about the security implications of energy are always raised. Llewelyn Hughes of Australian National University and Austin Long of Columbia are skeptical of many of the fears raised in national security debates. They argue that one of the key threats to energy markets is whether an actor can constrict a country’s supply of oil—and here U.S.