It’s now official. The International Community, that is to say some western nations, have decided to openly back the rebels in Libya in their fight against Muammar Gaddafi and his supporters.
Last week a UN resolution mandated a no-fly zone over Libya. It’s a resolution that has been put into effect with surprising speed.
For the record, I do think that the rebels had a valid cause to take up against the Libyan administration but the implementation of the no-fly zone makes me uneasy. Their cause has now been officially hijacked by the International Community and many will say, with some justification, that democracy is being imposed by the same people.
Unlike Tunisia and Egypt where the people brought the change they wanted to see, if the rebels in Libya are successful it will be a somewhat hollow success. One also has to wonder whether the resolution and its swift implementation was a result of a genuine sympathy with the rebels or rather because it was targeting an oil rich nation headed by an eccentric leader who had committed acts of terrorism in the 80s.
When all is said and done, one interesting fact stands out. If you’re a leader of a nation in North Africa or the Middle East, you would do well not to get the Arab league angry.
Every time they turn on one of their members, the UN led by some powerful nations swings into action against the offending member. This happened in 1990 with Iraq and now it’s happening with Libya.
this goes to show that the Arab League’s concern cannot be that some Libyans are facing aerial attack by Gaddafi’s forces especially as the rebel forces in Libya have anti-aircraft capability but rather that they simply did not like Gaddafi very much.
While Gaddafi was facing the music courtesy of cruise missiles and superior airforces backed by an International Community that would be only too happy to see his back, I was thinking beautiful thoughts. These thoughts were inspired by the writings of Mr. Butamire a few weeks ago on the beauty that is Rwanda.
Every Rwandan whatever their disagreements with each other is in love with their home country and I personally believe that domestic tourism could play a role in forging a common experience for many Rwandans.
One only has to go about the country to realise how often one finds him/herself in postcard moment. My personal favourite postcard moment is sunset at the Lake Kivu Serena beach in Gisenyi in case anyone was wondering. There are, however, a few problems for the domestic traveller.
Most facilities are geared towards the foreign tourist and given that Rwanda’s tourism policy revolves around attracting a small number of high paying ones this makes travelling in this country quite expensive.
A few have suggested that Rwandans should get preferential prices but this leaves the door open for abuse of any such framework and it would alienate visitors to the country.
At the same time because domestic tourists are not nearly as numerous, it would be hard to justify such a measure.
So what is one to do about this situation? For once I have no answers but I will put my faith in the competent officials who win prizes for Rwanda every year at the ITB Berlin to come up with a clever fix. As for now, a Rwandan would be well in his rights to say that his country is beautiful.