NATO has done that kind of thing before.
I have heard an Italian commentator say that both the Americans and the Italians are known to have paid the Taliban to be quiet in certain sectors of Afghanistan at certain times. He said the Italians were rotated into a tough sector for six months and told the Taliban, "We don't care what happens here. We just want six months of quiet until we're out of here." They got it.
The Americans had a helicopter full of money shot down in Afghanistan according to the commentator who was being interviewed on Al Jazeera, I believe. He says a behind the scenes scramble for access to Libyan resources has been taking place among the NATO allies.
A French intelligence analyst says he thinks that NATO started planning this Libyan operation two years ago.
edit on 26-8-2011 by ipsedixit because: (no reason given)