Name: Mu’ammar Abu-Minyar al-Qadhafi
Birth: June 7, 1942 (Surt, Tripolitania, then administrative district of Libya)
Education: A degree in Law from the University of Libya;
entered Military Academy in Benghazi
Political View: Islamic Socialism (a euphemism for direct,
Mu’ammar Qadhafi has a reputation of being an experienced, wise statesman who has been on the leading edge of struggles for many years. He also holds the reputation as one of the Africa’s longest-serving, postcolonial heads of the state; a dictator of Libya since 1969 when he toppled King Idris I
(Sidi Muhammad Idris al-Mahdi as-Sanusi) in a bloodless coup at the age of 27 (BBC.com, 2011). Qadhafi is the third longest-serving world ruler.
Qadhafi was the youngest child born to a peasant family of desert nomads. As his grown-up culture or as a way of life, he still travels with a Bedouin tent for welcoming and entertaining guests and visitors wherever he goes.
As a schoolboy, Qadhafi was expelled for a pro-Nasser activism that was aligned with the Arab unification-promoting slogan. (Gamal Abdel Nasser, Qadhafi’s inspiration, rose to the presidency by appealing to Arab unity.)
Qadhafi studied law at the University of Libya and graduated with high grades. He, then, entered the military academy in Benghazi in 1963 where he organized a secretive group passion to overthrowing the pro-Western Libyan monarchy. He graduated in 1965 and was sent to further his training at the British Army Staff College (now, Joint Services Command and Staff College) then returned as a commissioned officer in the Signal Corps.
POLITICS AND QADHAFI’S DOWNFALL
Colonel Qadhafi is the leader of the Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya. Theoretically, this organization is a “state of the masses,” governed by the people through a system of local councils. While in practice, it is through a military dictatorship controlled by Qadhafi, himself.
Qadhafi wrote about his Islamic socialist philosophy in his so-called Green Book that attempts to explain the dialectic principles that exist between the Marxism and capitalism. In his book, he proposes his Third Universal Theory—a theory of social harmony beyond communism and capitalism.
In my opinion, this Third Universal Theory either favors in a more advanced way or antagonizes the communist principle of social harmony. He institutionalized in his book that there was a third way, beyond communism and capitalism, through which the principle or the social goal of achieving social harmony could be realized by circumventing democracy, equality, and communion with nature.
Ergo, the basis of his Third Universal Theory can be subtly or boldly concluded to be based on social struggle— a force that has become the primary landscape to overhaul movements of history and of survival!
For many years, Qadhafi has become notorious for his avid support of the forces considered as terrorist organizations, such as Irish Republican Army or IRA in Ireland and the Spanish Basque separatist movement, Euskadi Ta Askatasuna or ETA. He was also identified in harboring the two terrorists responsible for Pam Am flight 103 bombing over Lockerbie in Scotland.
Throughout the 1990s, Libya has endured economic sanctions and diplomatic isolation resulted from Qadhafi’s refusal to accept responsibility and refusal to allow the extradition of the two harbored terrorists.
Qadhafi emerged as a popular African leader. He has earned the praise of Nelson Mandela and many others and as always a prominent figure in various Pan-American organizations. He sought to continue rehabilitating relationships with the West (the US and Europe).
After Saddam Hussein was overthrown in 2003, Qadhafi announced that his country has active weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and that he was willing to allow international inspectors to observe his country and dismantle it.
Western visits to Qadhafi’s kingdom started and seemed that Qadhafi’s goal to relationships rehabilitation with the West was fast becoming. The United States of America may restore full diplomatic relations with Libya once Qadhafi’s weapons of mass destruction program abandoned.
The UK Prime Minister Tony Blaire, in March 2004, became one of the first western leaders in decades to visit Libya and meet Qadhafi publicly. This visit paved the road for greater cooperation between Libya and the United Kingdom. This also pursued trade deals between the two nations. It also helped legitimize Qadhafi’s earnest aim to rehabilitate relationships with the West.
Then followed to visit Nicolas Sarkozy, the French president, who signed a number of bilateral and multilateral European agreements with Libya in July 2007. And the rest became Libya’s and the West’s history.
Amidst appearing to be exerting effort to progress even beyond international issues were concerned, Qadhafi was accused of allegedly running his country through suppression of political opponents by holding people without reason or trial. He was also accused of trafficking slaves. He became infamous for having an all-female bodyguard; condemned and opposed by actions and principles, especially in the West, where he then rehabilitating relationships with them. The United States and the EU withdraw their support of Qadhafi.
Protests walked and submerged the streets in Libya. Unwilling to be ousted like Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak and Tunisia’s Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, Qadhafi allegedly ordered a violent crackdown on protesters. Qadhafi responded by using military force and mercenaries to wipe out rebels.
With the interest to protect civilians, the United Nations (UN) declared “no-fly zone” over the country in March 2011. Meanwhile, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) forces also became involved in UN’s interest to save civilians from Qadhafi’s forces.
Then the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued a warrant of arrest to Qadhafi for crimes against humanity in June 2011.
Chaos and fighting in Libya intensified. Rebel forces gained control over the capital, Tripoli. Qadhafi’s place was taken over, and his son was captured and detained but has escaped.
However, in a recorded voice, Qadhafi declared: “Continue fighting!”
Libya stretches along the northeast coast of Africa between Tunisia and Algeria on the west and Egypt on the east. Much of the country lies within the Sahara.
Libya has a military dictatorship kind of government that governed by Col. Mu’ammar Abu-Minyar al-Qadhafi.
Libya was the scene of much desert fighting during World War II. After the fall of Tripoli on January 23, 1943, it came under the Allied administration. In 1949, the UN voted that Libya should become independent. In 1951 it became the United Kingdom of Libya.
The crisis in Libya is not new in the world stage of hegemony. To remember, Qadhafi has his willingness to gain camaraderie between the giants and the dwarves in the West. People may understand Qadhafi’s game as “unite and divide” strategy in advancing dominations over whatever points of significant courses.
However, groups with a deeper understanding express their supports but with secretive conditions. Either knowingly or unknowingly, Qadhafi took their baits up to what his political blueprint would likely be.
Based on Qadhafi’s political philosophy, I submissively point out that his Green Book has no difference with Communist’s Manifesto. Theoretically emphasizing social harmony, yet pragmatically abolishing the essence of social existence.
To sum it up, both are dreaming of a Utopia—a paradise of a mere dream, wishful thinking, fool’s promises just to advance self-interest to rule the world through a civil war or genocide.
Now, the world both upside down and the center peripheries have and always been aware of the United States’ and its allies’ geopolitical war with a concerted effort towards hegemony over politics, economics, and culture.
Undoubtedly, the support that Qadhafi has earned during his days of ambition to gain political influence expansion with the West was but farce—a political comic striptease in the theater play called, “You burn me, I burn you.” What had happened might be highly likely a strategy of the imperialists to control rising country or countries they considered enemies or barriers of their plans towards global hegemony. ▲