Monday, 28 February 2011

Gaddafi: ‘I Blame the Parents’

As the violent struggle for control of Libya continues, rebel forces opposed to Muammar Gaddafi’s regime seem to make progress on almost a daily basis. A torrent of Libyan diplomats have resigned and declared their allegiance to the ‘Libyan people’ as the eastern part of the country is now beyond the control Gaddafi and increasing numbers of towns in the west and south fall to the rebels. Senior figures from Gaddafi’s government and military as well as soldiers on the ground, have also joined the people in what appears to be an unstoppable momentum towards regime change. Much of Libya’s oil and gas industry is under the control of the rebel factions now, thus starving the regime of foreign revenue.

Forces loyal to Gaddafi still control most of the capital Tripoli and some other towns, most notably Sirte, birthplace of the dictator, and they are mounting counter attacks on some of the towns that have been taken over by the opposition. It is difficult to know whether the rebels can complete the revolution and take the remaining areas still in the regime’s control, as they are heavily defended by well-armed fighters, many of whom are African mercenaries and the fear is of a bloodbath should the rebels march on Tripoli to try and liberate the city.

The United Nations and the international community generally have condemned the regime’s use of lethal force against unarmed protesters, with sanctions announced and the determination to pursue those responsible for ‘war crimes’ through the International Criminal Court. Tony Blair, ex UK Prime Minister, has revealed that he has twice telephoned Gaddafi to urge him to step down; in what must have been a ‘one war criminal to another’ chat. Much of the western response to the crisis smacks of hypocrisy; nevertheless, the pressure is mounting on those in the regime surrounding Gaddafi, if not the tyrant himself.

Meanwhile, the Colonel has made public appearances making speeches in his rambling, ranting style, where he blames a mixture of al Qaida terrorists and the country’s parents for not controlling their off spring. This shows the deluded state of mind of a despot who has brutally ruled his country for over forty years, and just cannot understand that his people have had enough of his tyranny. Al Qaida has been notable by the lack of any comment from its leadership whatsoever on the wave of anti-government protests across the Arab world, and clearly they must know that these uprisings are not orchestrated by or favourable to militant Islam.

At the same time, Gaddafi accuses Bin Laden of running around dishing out acid tabs to the young people of the country. It would be almost comic, were it not such a serious situation, that the uprising in Libya could be stopped dead in its tracks by parents clipping their sons and daughters around the ears, and telling them to behave themselves and stop making trouble for the ‘great leader’.

The genie is out of the bottle now, the people have tasted victory and freedom in large parts of Libya, and there is now surely no going back. It looks to be only a matter of time and horribly much bloodshed, before Gaddafi’s regime falls completely. He has stated that he will fight to the last bullet, and I think he means it. He may well get his wish and die on Libyan soil in the near future, and only then will the people be truly free.

Photo from Reuters

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