Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Article: The (in)convenient truth about Muammar Gaddafi

Original Article written for Passive Observers by Petros Iliadis - March 2, 2011, 16:20

On September the 1st, 1969, a group of military officers led by Muammar Gaddafi staged a bloodless coup d'état against King Idris. Revolutionaries had abolished monarchy, proclaiming the new Libyan Arab Republic, and the 27 year old Gaddafi, was now, the Brotherly Leader and Guide of the Great Revolution of the Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya (State of the masses).

It only makes sense that after being in power for over 41 years, many question his ways of leading the Libyan people. He has been accused of various things by Western media: From the family corporation type of his political leadership and his eccentric clothing, to the reports by media corporations about bombing and murdering his own people, during the current political unrest.

Some observers believe Gaddafi’s regime will fall in a matter of days, some remain sceptical. While other fallen dictators have essentially been disconnected from the average citizen, Gaddafi mingles with them. Ivory Coast’s Laurent Gbagbo was hiding in his palace afraid to come out; Mubarak was behind closed doors and left at nightfall, Ben Ali fled the wrath of Tunisians on a private jet . Not Gaddafi. He seems to be
determined to fight fire with fire. Some claim, that Gaddafi's dictatorship has kept many Libyans in poverty despite the country's wealth, so one wonders why would impoverished people remain loyal to him and his regime.

The current situation should be seen in a wider context. Economies need oil, it is idle to support otherwise, and Libya has plenty. Gaddafi's administration is accused of mass genocide, sponsoring terrorism and spreading conflict in Africa. If there is sufficient evidence the International Community has been slow to respond. Gaddafi, during his reign has attempted to unite both African and Arab countries through the Islamic Legion, and the United States of Africa in 1972 and 2007respectively. In a symbolic ceremony in 2008 he was crowned 'King of Kings' by over 200 African cultural leaders. If Gaddafi is indeed a 'lunatic dictator' (Times magazine), who is shooting his own people like 'rats' and 'cockroaches' (The Economist) why did world leaders embraced him in the G8 summit in L' Aquila two years ago, and why Tony Blair signed a gas contract with him, representing Shell, for £120 million back in 2004?

With the possibility of a civil war outbreak and at the same time U.S. military forces moving nearer to Libya, the odds seem to be, not against Gaddafi and his regime, nor American interests in the region, but against the Libyan people. And there is no telling how this will end.


  1. There are about 140 tribes and clans in Libya and Gaddafi belongs to one of the tribes so I guess there is no wonder why some impoverished people remain loyal to him and his regime. I believe that as a statement it doesn't say much on its own. it would be good to know how many these "impoverished" people are and in which tribe they belong to. Gaddafi is well known for selling guns in West Africa and more specifically in Sierra Leone, getting diamonds in return. When he was accused for that, he said he wasn't aware of it. There is sufficient evidence, but I believe that whether the International Community or any other institution has been slow to respond or not is a whole different story. Also, correct me if i'm wrong, he wasn't crowned as king of kings. Instead he proclaimed himself to be "King of Kings" in the presence of over 200 African traditional rulers and kings. I also wonder what does this title even mean anyway? Yes, he wrote The Green Book, he used to be anti-western, he used to be a socialist with a "dream" but his way of leading also proves he is corrupted, crazy? and dangerous.

  2. Check this out:

  3. "Amid the hype, from the bought western media, no reference to the great contribution Colonel Gadhafi has made, namely in helping to free countless peoples from the yolk of colonialism - without any personal gain, i.e. a real freedom fighter - no reference to the fact that Libya has the greatest Human Development Index in Africa. Some dictator, eh?"

    so this journalist thought: helping to free countless peoples from the yolk of colonialism + Libya has the greatest Human Development Index in Africa = Gaddafi is not a dictator

    san na leme 1+1=2 ena pragma?!

  4. yes some more analysis would indeed be quite welcome from Mr. Timothy