its Principles with Glee Over Qaddafi's Death
would at least have been more decent of the Western democracies to refrain
from celebrating the man's death on behalf of the legal principles they
claim to be supreme custodians of. Every criminal has the right to a trial, and
(in principal), the rule of law is binding on all - without exception."
Muammar Qaddafi, former
leader of the defunct Jamahiriya,
died as he lived, between farce and tragedy. His convoy, fleeing the city of Sirte,
was attacked by French helicopters backed by one or more U.S. drones: All the
"revolutionaries" had to do was capture a wounded man, and after some
disgraceful treatment, shoot him like a dog. Still, few people will regret
the death of the half-mad tyrant, whose rare achievements are largely obscured
by violence, the absolute suppression of freedom and boundless corruption.
With this predictable outcome,
the Libyan people have been deprived of putting their despot on trial. But
could it have been any other way? No one in Europe, where Qaddafi funded the election
campaigns of many prominent leaders, nor in the "new" regime led by
Transitional Council composed of men from Qaddafi's inner circle, had any
interest in providing a forum for the embarrassing revelations of the fallen
It would at least have been
more decent of the Western democracies to refrain from celebrating the man's death
on behalf of the legal principles they claim to be supreme custodians
of. Every criminal has the right to a trial, and (in principal), the rule of
law is binding on all - without exception. It seems, however, that the methods of
G.W. Bush and his neoconservative cronies have taken precedence over any
ethical or legal considerations. Civilization now openly demands wild-west-style
justice. This is even more evident when through the news, we learn that more
than an hour passed between Qaddafi's capture - wounded but still living - and
the announcement of his death. Despite the hysteria exhibited by the
"combatants," who have been seen shooting into the air over the
course of this cleverly-televised war, it is reasonable to ask whether Qaddafi's
execution was perhaps ordered by National Transition Council leaders after, of
course, consultation with their NATO overseers.
But with Obama receiving the
Nobel Peace Prize, the height of indecency has been achieved. And can anyone
be surprised? The president of the United States, whose credibility has been diminished
according to the rhythm of his flip-flopping, welcomed Qaddafi's death by saying
it stands as a warning to all "iron-fisted" rulers. He should have
been more precise: "All iron-fisted rulers who are not our friends."
As for the others, they'll be
looked after. After all, what regimes is this temporary White House tenant talking
about? Bahrain, which just received over $50 million in American arms? Saudi
Arabia, which keeps its citizens in medieval darkness? Cameroon, where Paul Biya just won an
election that left everyone laughing except those in Paris?
The first lesson worth
pondering is that for nearly eight months, Qaddafi's miserable regime still
managed to resist an offensive by vastly-superior forces. That suggests that the
despot wasn't as isolated as some were willing to say, and that consequently,
the time immediately after Qaddafi will most likely be a period of uncertainty.
The second lesson, for the
benefit of permanent U.N. Security Council members Russia and China, is that
the mandates given the West in the name of humanitarian intervention have very
The third lesson, which
applies to everyone, is that people are willing to ally themselves with the
devil rather than live under the rule of draconian regimes that are destructive
to freedom, and that a number of countries, weakened by democratic deficits, can
be easy prey for every maneuver the imperialists can deploy.
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