Libya:Gaddafi is dead. What next? – VOR
Laaska News Oct. 25,2011
Marunina Olga, Anisimov Sergey
Muammar Gaddafi. Photo: EPA
So, Gaddafi’s dictatorship is now a thing of the past. This news would hardly disappoint anyone who is a supporter of democracy. The fall of a totalitarian regime in Libya, which lasted for as many as 40 years, can only be welcomed.
Still, the fact that the former dictator was killed in a very uncivilized way can hardly be praised by adherents of democracy. Some representatives of Libya’s new authorities claim that Gaddafi’s death was a mere accident. However, his death was filmed, and this video was published on the Web. From it, one can see that Gaddafi was, practically, butchered by the crowd. The fact that later, the crowd sneered over his dead body, is another proof of that.
The Libyan dictator probably deserved to be executed. But, anyway, it should have been done after a lawful and civilized trial. No one has a right to lynch anyone. Even those who were “hunting” for Gaddafi – the US and its NATO allies – have condemned this barbaric killing.
In connection with this story, one can recollect, for example, Saddam Hussein, another ousted dictator who, unlike Gaddafi, was executed only after an official trial sentenced him to death. Or, Hosni Mubarak, Egypt’s self-perpetuating leader for 30 years, who now is also officially on trial. Or, say, Tunisia’s former president Ben Ali, who, being ousted by a revolution, was not killed, but only forced to leave the country. (It is the Tunisian revolution, by the way, which started the current sequence of revolutions in Arab countries.)
All totalitarian regimes have something in common. On the other hand, one dictator can still be different in some points from another one.
Sergey Demidenko from the Institute of Strategic Analysis says:
“Gamal Abdel Nasser, Egypt’s president from 1956 till 1970, wanted to see his country, first of all, as the leader of the Arab world. Gaddafi, first of all, wanted to see Libya as the leader of a certain anti-Western and anti-imperialist coalition.”
“One can say whatever he or she likes,” Mr. Demidenko continues, “but facts say that totalitarian regimes are still more typical of the Middle East than Western-style democracies. This was true 40 years ago, when Gaddafi came to power. This is still true now.”
“This may not sound politically correct, but we should acknowledge the fact that Middle Eastern countries have not yet maturated enough to be democratic. Besides, Libya is, so to say, an artificial state. It was formed by the British, who artificially united Tripolitania and Cyrenaica into one state in 1946. This formal unification of several tribes, very different in origin and culture, didn’t stop ethnic conflicts between them. In such conditions, real democracy is impossible. A proof of that is that Libya’s first head, Idris Senussi, very soon proclaimed himself a monarch. Gaddafi never proclaimed himself a monarch, but, practically, he was one. Still, it must be added that, for all Gaddafi’s totalitarianism, Libya still showed some progress under him – at least, tribal conflicts became a thing of the past.”
The West is looking upon the events in Libya through the prism of its dogmatic paradigms which say that any dictatorship is bad and any democracy is good. The West’s logic is simple – Gaddafi had ordered to shoot at protesters in his country, and, thus, any means to oust him were good.
The main question now is: will Gaddafi’s death really serve for the good of the Libyan people? Iraq’s experience says that it would be too optimistic to answer “Certainly yes!”. A big threat sill remains that Gaddafi will just be substituted by another totalitarian leader.
Oct 24, 2011