NewsGram [India], February 26, 1011
The regional revolutionary wave in the Arab and Muslim countries – the weakest links in the global system of economic and social relations – has slowed down with the emergence of its first armed struggle, against the Libyan dictator Mu’ammar al-Qadhdhafi. Events in that long-oppressed country are changing by the hour, and prognostications about the fate of al-Qadhdafi and his regime are risky. The Libyan convulsion has assumed the characteristics of a civil war, with the army divided and whole regions declaring their defiance of the ruler.
On the evening of 26 February (US time), al-Qadhdhafi still held on to authority, with his supporters and mercenaries (about the latter more will be said here) protecting him in the capital, Tripoli. Libyan diplomats and other high officials, in addition to military elements, have deserted him as most of the eastern half of the country, bordering on Egypt, has reportedly fallen to rebel forces. The city of Benghazi has become the capital of the insurrection.
Media propaganda by the tyrant and his son epitomized the aberrant habits of the country’s ruler in his four decades of power: incoherent posturing, extreme insults and threats, and, at the same time, a pathetic attempt to solicit aid from the West by presenting Libya as now combatting the menace of radical Islam.
Al-Qadhdhafi’s long career of megalomania included publication of the so-called “Green Book” in which he sought incompetently to develop his own political theory. He proclaimed the adoption of Islamic shariah as the sole legal standard for his people, but his views on this and other aspects of Muslim faith and practice have been eccentric and have not gained him support from Muslim authorities.