I am sure I am one of many, who watched the events that unfolded in Libya on October, 20, with a combination of shock and horror. Carefully placing my now unpalatable lunch aside, I watched as the former Libyan leader, bloodied, wounded and begging for his life from a drainage culvert was paraded by rebel fighters before he was killed.
History has shown us that infamous leaders meet pretty violent deaths, often at the hands of mob justice. Simply take a look at how the Mussolinis and Ceaușescus of this world met their gruesome ends. But as it always is, history has an uncanny way of repeating itself, and Gadaffi was clearly not the exception to leaders whose deaths are a result of their malevolent deeds against the very people they are meant to serve. Except maybe for Stalin.
Growing up, Gadaffi to most seven year olds was a colourful character, what with his eccentric military uniform and his stunning Amazonian female bodyguards. Over a short time though, it became clear to the world that this man was the architect of a regime based on fear and brutal suppression of any opposition.
It is this attitude, this total obstinacy toward Libyans’ calls for more democracy that was his own undoing. It was simply a matter before Libyans too were affected by the domino-like effect of the ‘Arab Spring.’
Nonetheless, he shouldn’t have died as he did. Watching the former leaders’ death, I wondered at the future of the National Transitional Council (NTC) and its credibility in effecting structures for a stable Libya.
The mobs baying for Gadaffi’s blood and the lack of an effective chain of command to prevent his death at the hands of these NTC fighters, simply showed lack of reason or maturity in dealing with the situation.
Many have said, and rightly so, that Gadaffi should have been captured and put on trial in a court of law to face justice. His victims should have been given a chance to see him face trial.
His summary execution makes it look like one wrong has been avenged with another wrong. The NTC’s claims that the origins of Gadaffi’s fatal bullets are unknown or that it was all a result of crossfire, hold weak against the victorious claims that it was from the NTC fighters who captured him.
I sincerely hope that the NTC will have more control of its men during Libya’s recovery period, and the ability to oversee a peaceful transition in the face of possible future political crises.
That said, I wonder if the International Criminal Court will go after Gadaffi’s killers. After all, killing him was unethical and deprived him of his moral and constitutional rights as a human being. Didn’t, it? Aren’t these the very injustices upon which the ICC is enthusiastically committed to fighting globally?
One can only wait and see.