Thursday, September 08, 2011

Post Gadaffi Libya: Islamist Gangsters And Racist Pogroms?

I've been an optimist about the Libyan revolution and was pleased to see that the rebels' call for NATO help was heard over the crescendo of leftish mewling, anti-interventionist shouting and right-wing isolationist alarum-raising. My optimism has been borne out.

But as my pal Aymenn Jawad al-Tamimi quite rightly points out, not everything is so rosy, and if things go pear-shaped then NATO must be prepared to take "severe retaliation" against counterrevolutionary backsliding.

"In any event, it is worth recalling that the Iraqi Shi'a politicians and public figures who pushed for the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003 (e.g. Ahmad Chalabi, who is the first cousin of my aunt's husband in Baghdad) repeatedly affirmed that their sole interest was in creating a genuinely free and democratic Iraq after the overthrow of Saddam Hussein's regime. Yet once in power through the interim Iraqi Governing Council, whether for reasons of ideological conviction or political expediency, they effectively turned the de-Baa'thification process into "de-Sunnification" in the hope of creating a majoritarian Shi'a democracy. This only aggravated sectarian tensions and culminated in the civil war around Baghdad in 2006."


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