Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Libya: The Leader's wide-ranging article

In a recent publication by the Revolutionary Committees Group there was a contribution from Colonel Qadhafi under the title, “An invitation to form a party of the people once again”. This quotation from his Green Book has, however, become meaningless, with the Leader apparently prescribing that only the ruling party will be permitted to keep its membership.

In fact, Colonel Qadhafi appears to be threatening the Revolutionary Committees' cadres and others who have held responsible posts in the Jamahiriya with exclusion from the regime if their known involvement in bribery and corruption is “grotesque”. All those who in the past have been corrupt remain at risk of the backlash of “the oppressed class”.

The new rich now comprise the enemy, and Colonel Qadhafi is promising that the regime will be active in tackling bribery and corruption and bringing those involved to book. In his article, the “oppressed” are being encouraged to revolt against the “fat cats” who have prospered from their illicit activities since 1969. The Leader is also keen that non-political Libyans should join the new party.

It is suspected that the Leader is quietly regretting his move towards liberalism following the aborted attempt in 2003 to develop weapons of mass destruction.

There are several explanations for this remarkable article. He appears to, once again, stand up as the protector of Libya's poor and to destroy the polarised society that exists today. He has recently made several visits into the Libyan countryside to glean some of the causes of national ambivalence towards the regime. During his review, he found that the people regarded the regime as separate from their lives and unapproachable and this seems to have upset him very much. He now appears to feel that “a new era is taking shape” and is, therefore, establishing an imaginary political party with which he can settle old scores with corrupt officials and deal harshly with those who have exploited their positions.

The domestic opposition is mainly expressed through apathy and non-co-operation. It is assumed that real revolution will eventually come but only slowly because of the Libyans' deep anathema to political action.

For more news and expert analysis about Libya, please see Libya Focus and Libya Politics & Security.

© 2010 Menas Associates

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