Category Archives: Muammar Qaddafi

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The Synonymity Between Dispensability and Decline

by Ehsan Ahrari on June 22, 2013, No Comments

In his second inaugural address in January 1997, President Bill Clinton stated, "America stands alone as the world's indispensable nation."[1]  Since then, that phrase has been used on a regular basis.  America, as an indispensable nation, underscores its dominance in resolving conflicts of all portions since the end of World War II.    It has been a major enabler of global economic stability and prosperity of Western Europe and Japan, and, most important of all, it contained the former Soviet Union–playing a crucial role in bringing about its eventual implosion.  (more…)
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Who is Ready for the Coming Anarchy in the Arab World? … Not the US!

by Ehsan Ahrari on November 4, 2012, No Comments

No matter who becomes the next president of the United States, the post-Arab Awakening Middle East is in the process of creating new rules affecting the lone superpower and other great powers. From the US perspective, the changing political order in Egypt has seriously eroded its power and influence in the region. The most important concern affecting Egypt–its continued commitment to the Camp David peace agreement–faces a questionable future. Tunisia–though it did not figure prominently in the past political maneuvers of the United States–has become an important place. Washington is very much hoping that Islamic moderation still prevails in that country. The post-Qaddafi Libya gave a lot of hope to the US policymakers as a country where they could reestablish America's presence and influence. However, the murder of the US ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens, and three other Americans, not only shocked the administration of Barack Obama, but also became a forceful point of
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Qaddafi: Brutal End of a Brute

by Ehsan Ahrari on October 22, 2011, No Comments

The bloody execution of Muammar Qaddafi remains clouded in conflicting stories at the time of this writing, but it was to be expected.  The gruesome nature of his death might have been watched with great fear by Bishara Assad of Syria, the remaining brutal dictator, and by Ali Bin Saleh, whose regimes are increasingly looking like that of Qaddafi's in turning on its killing machine on the protestors.  For forty two years, Qaddafi ruled Libya like a tyrant.  No one really knows how many people he had killed in that duration, hundreds or even thousands.  But the beginning of his era in 1969 was somewhat promising. (more…)
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Why Al-Qaida Never Was an Enduring Organization or a Movement

by Ehsan Ahrari on September 2, 2011, No Comments

Two themes that emerge from the material that the US Special Forces captured when they killed Usama Bin Laden (UBL) in Abbottabad, Pakistan, are worth considering.  First, we are told that the al-Qaida (AQ) leader was obsessed about carrying out another major attack on the United States.  He might have concluded that that might be the only way his organization could regain its rapidly dwindling popularity among Muslims.  Second, it seems that UBL also came to the conclusion that AQ's goal of establishing an Islamic Caliphate was too idealistic and impractical, even under the best of circumstances, for its continued operation.  He might have also concluded that, because of the sudden and awesome popularity of the Arab Awakening in bringing an end to two of the oldest dictatorships of the Arab world, his organization also faced a bleak future in the context of regaining popularity or gaining relevance among Muslims.  (more…)
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What About a ‘Drone War’ as a Regime Change Strategy in Syria?

by Ehsan Ahrari on August 27, 2011, 2 Comments

As much as I oppose America's intervention in the Arab world, it might not be a bad strategy to use American drones to attack Syrian troops who are massacring the unarmed civilian protestors in that country.  Such a strategy will also complement President Barack Obama's strategy of "leading from behind." (more…)
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The Arab Awakening and the Forces of Reaction

by Ehsan Ahrari on July 11, 2011, No Comments

David Gardner, in a thoughtful column in the Financial Times, writes that under old Arab order "despotism and Islamism fed on each other." Going through the mental tapes covering the confrontation between Islamism and despotism in a "fast overview" mode, that observation is an extremely valid one.  At the same time, when one observes that even in places where the Arab awakening has toppled two dictators–Zein el-Abideen Bin Ali and Hosni Mubarak–the status quo forces are still hovering around looking for ways to bring back the old order perhaps under new wrappers.  If they were to succeed, that will be the greatest tragedy that struck the Arab world in modern times. (more…)
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The New Arab Cold War: Monarchies Versus the Arab Awakening

by Ehsan Ahrari on May 27, 2011, No Comments

The old Arab Cold War was fought in the 1960s between the republican states who wanted to transform the Arab world through the use of pan-Arabism and the monarchies, which were opposed to that phenomenon. The latter envisioned the former as the "enemies," since the pan-Arabists were focused on overthrowing the monarchies. The leader of the republican camp was Egypt under Gamal Abdel Nasser. The leader of the monarchical camp was Saudi Arabia. The two camps fought a civil war in Yemen in the early 1960s. The bloody political change of Iraq in 1958, which permanently transformed Iraq from a monarchy into a republic, proved that the fear of the Arab monarchies regarding the republican states was not unfounded. Now, a new Arab Cold War is being fought once again under the Saudi leadership for the preservation of the monarchies. The "enemy" this time is the Arab Awakening, which threatens to sweep aside all autocratic regimes. Two Arab dictators – Zein el-Abideen Bin Ali and Hosni
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The “Bad” Politics of Ousting Libya’s Bad Man

by Ehsan Ahrari on March 22, 2011, No Comments

President Barack Obama is finding out how tricky America's added involvement in the Arab world can be in the aftermath of George W. Bush's adventurism in Iraq of 2003.  Obama cannot seem to win on any side.  One group of conservative Republicans is upset because he took too long to act, another group's complaint is that Libya is not part of U.S. vital interests.  Liberal Democrats are angry about another adventurism in the Arab world.  Even the Arab League, which initially supported a no-fly zone resolution, had second thoughts when the allied coalition eagerly started to bomb Libyan military targets.  Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who specializes in tormenting Muslims of the North Caucasus, was most uncharitable in his rhetoric of comparing the air campaign over Libya as reminiscent of the Crusades.  The Russian president, Dmitri Medvedev, disagreed with his Prime Minister and former boss.  The Libyan bad man, Muammar Qaddafi, cannot be happier over this growing squabb
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Why the Rise and Outcome of a Chinese Awakening are Hard to Predict?

by Ehsan Ahrari on March 13, 2011, No Comments

If the Chinese leaders read Francis Fukuyama's latest essay, "Is China Next?," they should come away with ample mixed feelings.  As much as he relied on a variety of well-chosen variables to develop a highly rational analysis about why China may not be the next country to experience the Chinese version of the Arab awakening (and this part of his argument should please the rulers of China), Fukuyama's most persuasive argument in his essay was the following: "All social revolutions are driven by intense anger over injured dignity, an anger that is sometimes crystallized by a single incident or image that mobilizes previously disorganized individuals and binds them into a community. We can quote statistics on education or job growth, or dig into our knowledge of a society's history and culture, and yet completely miss the way that social consciousness is swiftly evolving through a myriad of text messages, shared videos or simple conversations."  This observation should make them lose a
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The Arab Awakening as the End of Arab “Exceptionalism”

by Ehsan Ahrari on February 27, 2011, No Comments

The best promise of the Arab awakening is that, if the ouster of dictators were to lead to democratic governance, the Arab world will be truly freed from all manifestations of the remnant of neo-imperialism.  Arab Exceptionalism, the concept that democratic rule was not meant for Arab regions, is proving itself to be wrong.  In reality, it was as wrong as it was racist.  The Arab autocrats promoted it, but the realpolitik of the West in its uncritical acceptance of it was also responsible for its sustenance throughout the post-World War II era. (more…)