Last Ditch Stand of a Dictator, killing order by Muammar al-Qadhafi
Dr. Shamim Moula Ph.D.
Dhaka, 28 February
1. Introduction: Finally whole of the the Jaziratul Arab (Arab Peninsula) and the “horn” or North Africa’s cruel most dictators have been pulled in to their fate, the people’s upsurge now not only entered, but engulfed Libya, one of the very few countries assumed to contain the most highest and high quality oil in the planet earth! Perhaps, it is one of the moment for which the super neurotic genius US writer Edgar Allan Poe wrote in his infamous story of "Metzengerstein" 1832, that “the narrator states that its origin appears to rely on an old prophecy: A lofty name shall have a fearful fall when, as the rider over his horse, the mortality of Metzengerstein shall triumph over the immortality of Berlifitzing.". The immortality of Arab “Berlifitzings”, the cruel feudal dictators have been sunken in the blood of millions of martyrs killed by them in their decades of ruling of the country. As Libya is a vast country with enormous natural resources and almost 100% Muslim inhabitants, it requires special attention. This write up is to mitigate the banglanews24.com readers’ demands to know about Muammar al-Qadhafi.
Libya became an independent nation in 1951 and before its independence was an Italian colony. The country is located in Northern Africa and surrounded by the Mediterranean Sea, Algeria, Chad, Egypt, Niger, Sudan, and Tunisia. Libya operates under a unique form of “direct democracy” and its government is a combination of socialism and Islamic law. There are 6,310,434 people in Libya. That figure includes 166,510 non-nationals, according to the 2009 Census. The religious make up of the country is 97% Muslim and 3% other.1
Muammar al-Qadhafi is almost as controversial as the spelling of his name (ex. Qaddafi, Gheddafi, Gaddafi, Khadafi, etc.). al-Qadhafi has been the de Facto leader of Libya since 1969 and holds the title of the third longest serving National Leader still in power. He also holds the title of “Brotherly Leader and Guide of the Revolution”. Not much is known about his childhood; even his date of birth is a subject of uncertainty. All that is really known is that he was born in 1942 to a peasant family in Libya. He is a devout Muslim and an avid nationalist. He attended both the University of Libya and the Libyan Military Academy. However, he organized a student protest against Israel in 1948 and was ultimately expelled from the University of Libya. He has said his inspiration was Gamel Abdel Nasser, the former president of Egypt. Nasser was an advocate for Arab independence and unity.
3. Overthrow of King Idris
Like many dictators before him, al-Qadhafi took power of the country through a military coup. al-Qadhafi joined the army in 1963 and organized a movement to overthrow King Idris, the sitting leader of Libya. al-Qadhafi believed that Idris was allowing Western countries to have too much power in Libyan affairs. When King Idris left Libya in 1969 to attend to urgent medical issues, al-Qadhafi used other Libyan officers in the Libyan army to commence with his plan to overthrow the government. They were successful and overtook both the government and military offices of Libya.3
After his successful revolution, al-Qadhafi made some serious changes to the Libyan structure and government. He first proclaimed Libya as an Arab republic. He also spoke out against Israel, stated his positive opinion of Arab unity, and urged Libyans to follow the strict teachings of Islam. He became president of the Revolutionary Command Council and obtained total control over Libya. On the issue of Western intervention in Libya, he called for the removal of American and military bases. He then began to nationalize foreign-owned banks and oil fields.3
4. Political Career
al-Qadhafi is one of the most erratic leaders on this website. His main goals include a removal of Western Intervention in Libya and a unified Africa. However, he is also a deeply religious man and wants to see his people strictly adhere to the teachings of Islam. His religious beliefs are probably the most apparent in his policies and how he runs the country.
5. Third Universal Theory
“In the early 1970s, Qadhafi began to synthesize and expand his ideas of Arab unity, independence, economic egalitarianism, and cultural authenticity into the Third Universal Theory” . The Third Universal Theory came from the principles of the Koran and was in harmony with Islamic views. It criticized representative democracies, such as the United States and Great Britain, by saying they were dishonest and called for direct participation of the masses in democracy. al-Qadhafi believed that he had begun to achieve this through his policy of Jamahiriya. Jamahiriya literally means “government by the masses”3and al-Qadhafi claims it is an integral part of all of his policies.
In the Third Universal Theory, al-Qadhafi criticizes both capitalism and communism and says that his theory “predates”4 both types of economies. He said that workers should be “partners not employees”3 . Although this sounds a lot like one of the founding principles of communism, al-Qadhafi disagreed with the idea of class conflict. He thought that classes were merely a colonial construct that was meant to put the colonists over the nationals. He outlined his entire theory in the three-part Green Book. The Third Universal Theory has long been his most well-known political construct. 4
6. The African Union
The African Union is often called al-Qadhafi’s greatest political achievement. The African Union was founded on September 9, 1999 by a “Declaration (the Sirte Declaration) calling for the establishment of an African Union, with a view, inter alia, to accelerating the process of integration in the continent to enable it play its rightful role in the global economy while addressing multifaceted social, economic and political problems compounded as they are by certain negative aspects of globalization”6.
al-Qadhafi was elected Chairman of the African Union in 2009. However, some members of the international community believe he is too unpredictable to lead such a large group of nations.
Regardless, he was elected with a unanimous vote. He immediately turned his sights onto unifying the African Nations. His project is now called the Unity Project. The ultimate goal is to create the “United States of Africa”. This would effectively turn the now separate states of African into one nation. They would share one military, one currency, and a single passport that would allow Africans to move within the country freely. If this plan went into effect the members of the African Union would lose their national sovereignty. This is probably why his plan has not been supported by many members of the union.
7. International Relations and Terrorism
Because of al-Qadhafi’s stated opposition to Israel and call for Arab unity throughout the world, Libyan foreign affairs were marked by a great deal of mistrust. al-Qadhafi has also been accused many times of providing a safe haven for terrorists and giving them a place to train and funding. This has stretched the relationship between Libya and the United States to the breaking point. However, their willingness to allow terrorists into their country has also put a strain on the relationship between Libya and other members of the international community.3
In 1985, a terrorist attack in Palestine was blamed on Libya by President Reagan, who was the sitting U.S. president at the time. al-Qadhafi quickly denied involvement in the terrorist attack and quickly turned his sights towards discriminating against Americans living in Libya. On January 1, 1986, al-Qadhafi ordered all U.S. citizens to leave Libya. The strained relationship between the two nations was stretched even further in April of 1986. On April 14, 1986 the United States bombed Libya. al-Qadhafi’s infant daughter was killed in the attack. However, it was not the attack in Palestine that spurred the air-strike. It was, instead, a bombing that had occurred in West Berlin in 1986 which killed two American servicemen and injured numerous others, which made Reagan order the air strike on the Libyan capital.3
Libya has also been linked to other terrorist attacks. In 1988 two Libyan men were accused of blowing up a jet in Scotland in an attack that killed 270 people. al-Qadhafi was ordered to turn over the suspects by the United Nations. Predictably, al-Qadhafi refused to arrest the two men in question. Because of al-Qadhafi’s unwillingness to adhere to the arrest warrants, the United Nations brought sanctions against Libya. Eventually the sanctions were lifted in 1999 when the two men were brought to trial. In 2000, a French court ruled that al-Qadhafi could be considered responsible and brought to trial for an attack on a French plane that blew up over Niger and killed 171 people. However, al-Qadhafi denied the allegations and refused to pay reparations to the families of the deceased.3
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2"Muammar al-Gaddafi: Biography from Answers.com." Answers.com. Web. 2 Dec. 2009. .
3"Mu`ammar Qadhafi al- Biography – life, family, children, parents, name, school, young, son, book, information, born, time." Encyclopedia of World Biography. Web. 2 Dec. 2009.
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7"Gaddafi vows to push Africa unity." BBC News. N.p., n.d. Web. 9 Dec. 2009. .
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