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Thursday, 20 October 2011

Gaddafi's dead .. shot in both legs .. died of his wounds.

Muammar Gaddafi, former leader of Libya for 41 years is reported to have been captured and killed by the Libyan rebel forces. A civil war has been raging  in Libya since street protests began against Gaddafi's regime in February this year.

Now, I hear the arguments that Gaddafi ran the country well and spent Libya's oil money on Libya. In 2010, Libya had the highest GDP, education index, and human development index in Africa. However, isn't the wealth of a country meant to be spent on a country anyway? Other African countries would be doing just as well if their leaders were not corrupt. Not being overly corrupt does NOT make Gaddafi great - just a normal sized leader in a continent of corrupt Pygmy leaders.

Many Africans believe the West 'killed' Gaddafi, hunted down a courageous leader who stood up to the West, took them on and won. Others point to his achievements in Libya and give him credit for not 'stealing' Libya's oil money.

This is bunkum! Our expectations of our leaders is so low, we praise lavishly any leadership that does the barest minimum, and laud them as if they are doing something special. What totally ticks me off is that Gadaffi was in power for 41 years! 41 years!

I don't give a toss if Gaddafi was the greatest thing since sliced bread. Unless a country has agreed it is a constitutional monarch, NO leader should be in power for 41 years. Gaddafi swept in via a revolution, he  set his country on the straight and narrow, all well and good. He should THEN have stepped down. Imagine if Gaddafi had set up political parties, established democracy, won elections and led Libya for 8 years - 12 years (two presidential terms of 4 or 6years). He would have been feted and praised, an elderly statesman today, a man whose word would have been respected in his country and abroad.

Instead the young revolutionary became an elderly megalomaniac. His opponents were thrown into jail, ALL dissent was quelled, torture became common-place, no press dared disagree with him, The people of Libya had food in their stomachs but woe betide the man/woman/child who dared criticise 'the great leader'. Arrest by the secret police was an almost certainty for such 'treasonous' words.

Since Gaddafi refused to step down, refused to allow any political parties or any form of fredom of expression, corruption inevitably followed. His friends and family became his closest advisors. No-one is saying Gaddafi himself is/was corrupt but most agree his sons were. Can you blame his sons?

These young men had been brought up to believe leadership of the country was their birthright. Born after Gaddafi's revolution, they were not revolutionaries but spoiled kids who had unlimited access to vast amounts of money and unlimited power. They responded to this heady mix by becoming corrupt tyrants who beat up girlfriends, servants and hotel staff in Western hotels and then claimed diplomatic immunity if Western law tried to deal with them. Gaddafi threatened Switzerland with economic sanctions because the Swiss authorities dared to bring a case against his youngest son, Hannibal, who had brutally beaten up 2 of his servants in a Swiss hotel. On another occasion, Hannibal's bodyguards also beat up French POLICEMEN for daring to stop this spoiled kid when he was speeding down the Champs Elyseees. At what point does being the child of a leader make you immune to the laws of OTHER countries? If his kids were behaving with such arrogance and violence out of Libya, what must they must have been like back in Libya?

Africa needs good leaders. I respectfully say while Gaddafi did well to develop Libya economically, Gaddafi is not the model of leadership we need.  Bread in the stomach is not worth losing all freedom to express our views, to demand political reform, seek a change in government or have a leader's children forced down our throats. Instead of Gaddafi, we need more leaders like Jerry Rawlings, former president of Ghana and Nelson Mandela. Men of integrity who led their countries, did a good job, GAVE UP power and have left a legacy of a robust democracy for their countries.

The Arab Spring has toppled another leader. This has seen ordinary men and women rise up, tired of the old guard, tired of corruption and fed-up of despotic leaders who cling desperately power. It is easy to blame the West for interference but if you set your own house on fire, don't be surprised if it gives your neighbours a chance to rush into your home in the guise of helping you out!

This should be a wake-up call to the corrupt leadership we have in Nigeria. Change and lead the country well, spend Nigeria's money on Nigeria, STOP rigging elections, put aside tribalism and nepotism and put Nigeria's interest's first. Otherwise, one day change WILL come - and it might NOT be very pretty especially for the leaders, their families and their cronies!



john obienu said...

The end of a tyrant is for many of different shades, some perceive it as a Blessing, some as a tragedy whatever way we view it..Isn't it time we do away with these sit tight madmen and allow true democracy to rein?

Noir said...

Hear hear John! I couldn't say it better. No political leader has the right to lead forever.

Anonymous said...

It appears there is a lot of anti Gaddafi sentiment being expressed by Africans who to my mind are totally ignorant of the positive and far reaching achievements in and contribution to, not only the economic prosperity of his people but to the liberation and development of Africa as a whole.

I would like to examine the more positive aspects of his legacy, how it has impacted on Africa and how best to utilise it in the future.

In Libya, Gaddafi was responsible for developing his country and his people to the extent that Libya has topped the HDI (Human Development Index) in the whole of Africa for decades, which means that his people enjoyed the highest standard of living in the African Continent contrary to the baseless claims of his detractors......
The road and general infrastructure network in Libya was first class before the British and the Americans blew them to smithereens.
The following points to further illustrate this are doing the rounds on various websites....
Muammar Gaddafi's Leadership profile in Libya:-

1.There was no electricity bill in Libya; electricity was free for all its citizens

2. There was no interest on loans, banks in Libya are state-owned and loans given to all its citizens at 0% interest by law

3. Home considered a human right in Libya –Gaddafi vowed that his parents would not get a house until everyone in Libya had a home. Gaddafi’s father has died while him, his wife and his mother are still living in a tent

4. All newly weds in Libya receive $60,000 Dinar (US$50,000) by the government to buy their first apartment so to help start up the family

5. Education and medical treatments are free in Libya. Before Gaddafi only 25% of Libyans are literate. Today the figure is 83%

6. Should Libyans want to take up farming career, they would receive farming land, a farming house, equipments, seeds and livestock to kick-start their farms –all for free

7. If Libyans cannot find the education or medical facilities they need in Libya, the government funds them to go abroad for it – not only free but they get US$2,300/mth accommodation and car allowance

8. In Libya, if a Libyan buys a car, the government subsidized 50% of the price

9. The price of petrol in Libya is $0.14 (N22) per litre

10. Libya has no external debt and its reserves amount to $150 billion –now frozen globally!

11. If a Libyan is unable to get employment after graduation the state would pay the average salary of the profession as if he or she is employed until employment is found.

12. A portion of Libyan oil sale is, credited directly to the bank accounts of all Libyan citizens

13. A mother who gave birth to a child receive US$5,000 14. Gaddafi carried out the world’s largest irrigation project, known as the Great Man-Made River project, to make water readily available throughout the desert country.

Anonymous said...

Before Gaddafi came to power in 1969, a barrel of oil was 40 American cents. He launched a campaign to withhold Arab oil unless the West paid more for it. The price went up to $20 per barrel. When the Arab-Israel war of 1973 broke out, the price increased to $40. Most of the oil producers in the world, including the Gulf countries, do not appear to acknowledge the historical role played by Gaddafi on this issue. The huge wealth many of these oil producers are enjoying was, at least in part, due to Gaddafi's efforts. The West continued to develop despite the oil price hike which would suggest that the pre-Gaddafi oil market was characterised by the super exploitation of these oil producing nations by the West.

Gaddafi has conducted an independent foreign policy and, of course, also independent internal policies. We all know why the West resent independent-minded leaders and prefer puppets. Most of the countries that have transitioned from Third World to First World status since 1945 have had independent-minded leaders: South Korea (Park Chung-hee), Singapore (Lee Kuan Yew), China People's Republic (Mao Tse Tung, Chou Enlai, Deng Xiaoping, Marshal Yang Shangkun, Li Peng, Jiang Zemin, Hu Jintao), Malaysia (Dr. Mahthir Mohamad), Brazil (Luis Inacio Lula da Silva), Iran (the Ayatollahs Khomeini and Khamenei), etc. Between World War I and World War II, the Soviet Union transitioned into an industrial country, propelled by the dictatorial but independent-minded Joseph Stalin.
In Africa, we have also benefited from a number of independent-minded leaders: Colonel Nasser of Egypt, Mwalimu Nyerere of Tanzania, Samora Machel of Mozambique, and others. That is how southern Africa was liberated. That is how Uganda got rid of Idi Amin. The stopping of genocide in Rwanda and the overthrow of Mobutu Sese-Seko in the Democratic Republic of the Congo were as a result of efforts of independent-minded African leaders.

11 years into his tenure, the independent-minded Gaddafi continued did make a number of positive contributions to Libya, as well as and more importantly to Africa as a whole.
Take just one little known example, the likes of which was to be repeated throughout Africa;
According to Yoweri Museveni in 1981 the Ugandans were fighting for liberation from a criminal dictatorship, they failed to capture enough guns at Kabamba and ran into a crisis, On Feb. 6, 1981 Gaddafi sent them a small consignment of 96 rifles and 100 anti-tank mines together with associated ammunition, he did not consult Washington or Moscow before he did this; This was good for Libya, for Africa, and for the Middle East as a whole.

We should also remember as part of that independent - mindedness and fearless Pan African agenda, the fact that he expelled British and American military bases from Libya.

It has been argued that Gaddafi did not invest adequately in his military machine otherwise he would not have been so easily defeated by the NATO forces. This begs the question whether he was the violent dictator the West would claim. Or perhaps he was too busy spending his country’s wealth for the benefit of his people and Africa as a whole....

We are certainly seeing some very unsavoury activities by the NTC who Gaddafi claimed were Islamist Terrorists and who are now showing their true colours, not least in their declaration of an Islamic State, their single minded formulation of a constitution to the exclusion of their people but also in their slaughter of Black Africans and anybody else who would appear to have been pro Gaddafi, does this ring a bell here .......

Anonymous said...

One wonders what Cameron would do if 500 armed men stormed Downing Street with the aim of taking over power, yes you guessed it every last one of them would be killed if they did not lay down their arms and surrender, and yet amazingly the very same Cameron spearheaded the invasion of Libya in support of these armed rebels........

It was Gaddafi’s Libya that offered all of Africa its first revolution in modern times – connecting the entire continent by telephone, television, radio broadcasting and several other technological applications such as telemedicine and distance teaching. And thanks to the WMAX radio bridge, a low cost connection was made available across the continent, including in rural areas.
See the link below for more detail including the reason why this cost the West $500m / year plus interest. A very good reason for them to be very pissed off with him.

Gaddafi also spearheaded the formation and financing of the African Monetary Fund to be based in the Cameroon, The African Central Bank to be based in Nigeria and The African Investment Bank to be based in Libya. These three institutions would have released the financial stranglehold the West currently exerts over Africa, effectively giving us control over our financial future, the implication this cannot be overemphasised for the economic well being of the entire continent of Africa.....

Gaddafi further scuppered the imperialist shenanigans of the European Union by directing the African Union towards a United States of Africa clearly in contempt of the European Unions plan to remain the benefactor of the African Union thus maintaining the Status Quo of European Imperialism in Africa with all that this implies and yes ALL THIS IMPLIES........

Gaddafi also undermined the European plan to destabilise African Unity by creating and funding various regional groupings like ECOWAS, COMESA, UDEAC, SADC and The Great Maghreb........

Gaddafi was also known as a generous humanist well known for a number of humanitarian deeds for AFRICA most notably his unselfish financial and Military support for the struggle against Apartheid despite this incurring the wrath of the West. Of course to the West at this time Nelson Mandela was branded a terrorist.....LOLOLOLOLOL....... How times have changed and why the adage that ‘one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter’ rings soooo true.

Anonymous said...

“ Mandela didn’t mince his words when the former US president Bill Clinton said the visit was an ‘unwelcome’ one – ‘No country can claim to be the policeman of the world and no state can dictate to another what it should do’. He added – ‘Those that yesterday were friends of our enemies have the gall today to tell me not to visit my brother Gaddafi, they are advising us to be ungrateful and forget our friends of the past.”
Indeed, the West still considered the South African racists to be their brothers who needed to be protected. That’s why the members of the ANC, including Nelson Mandela, were considered to be dangerous terrorists. It was only on 2 July 2008, that the US Congress finally voted a law to remove the name of Nelson Mandela and his ANC comrades from their black list, not because they realised how stupid that list was but because they wanted to mark Mandela’s 90th birthday.
If the West was truly sorry for its past support for Mandela’s enemies and really sincere when they name streets and places after him, how can they continue to wage war against Gaddafi who helped Mandela and his people to victory ?

This brings me to his support for the IRA who fought a guerrilla war against British rule in Ireland in the 1919-21 Irish War of Independence, and who continued fighting until recent times to realise their 1916 proclamation of the Irish Republic. LET US NOT FORGET THAT THE USA WAS THE MAJOR SUPPORTER OF THE IRA TOO, SO GADDAFI WAS IN GOOD COMPANY I’M SURE EVERYBODY WOULD AGREE.........

And because time will not allow a further summary and elaboration of the excellent article on the US / European assault on Libya written by Jean-Paul Pougala any further I will copy and paste accordingly.......

And what if Gaddafi’s Libya were more democratic than the USA, France, Britain and other countries waging war to export democracy to Libya? On 19 March 2003, President George Bush began bombing Iraq under the pretext of bringing democracy. On 19 March 2011, exactly eight years later to the day, it was the French president’s turn to rain down bombs over Libya, once again claiming it was to bring democracy. Nobel peace prize-winner and US President Obama says unleashing cruise missiles from submarines is to oust the dictator and introduce democracy.
The question that anyone with even minimum intelligence cannot help asking is the following: Are countries like France, England, the USA, Italy, Norway, Denmark, Poland who defend their right to bomb Libya on the strength of their self proclaimed democratic status really democratic? If yes, are they more democratic than Gaddafi’s Libya? The answer in fact is a resounding NO, for the plain and simple reason that democracy doesn’t exist. This isn’t a personal opinion, but a quote from someone whose native town Geneva, hosts the bulk of UN institutions. The quote is from Jean Jacques Rousseau, born in Geneva in 1712 and who writes in chapter four of the third book of the famous Social Contract that ‘there never was a true democracy and there never will be.’
Rousseau sets out the following four conditions for a country to be labelled a democracy and according to these Gaddafi’s Libya is far more democratic than the USA, France and the others claiming to export democracy:
1. The State: The bigger a country, the less democratic it can be. According to Rousseau, the state has to be extremely small so that people can come together and know each other. Before asking people to vote, one must ensure that everybody knows everyone else, otherwise voting will be an act without any democratic basis, a simulacrum of democracy to elect a dictator.

Anonymous said...

The Libyan state is based on a system of tribal allegiances, which by definition group people together in small entities. The democratic spirit is much more present in a tribe, a village than in a big country, simply because people know each other, share a common life rhythm which involves a kind of self-regulation or even self-censorship in that the reactions and
counter reactions of other members impacts on the group.
From this perspective, it would appear that Libya fits Rousseau’s conditions better than the USA, France and Great Britain, all highly urbanised societies where most neighbours don’t even say hello to each other and therefore don’t know each other even if they have lived side by side for twenty years. These countries leapfrogged leaped into the next stage – ‘the vote’ – which has been cleverly sanctified to obfuscate the fact that voting on the future of the country is useless if the voter doesn’t know the other citizens. This has been pushed to ridiculous limits with voting rights being given to people living abroad. Communicating with and amongst each other is a precondition for any democratic debate before an election.
2. Simplicity in customs and behavioural patterns are also essential if one is to avoid spending the bulk of the time debating legal and judicial procedures in order to deal with the multitude of conflicts of interest inevitable in a large and complex society. Western countries define themselves as civilised nations with a more complex social structure whereas Libya is described as a primitive country with a simple set of customs. This aspect too indicates that Libya responds better to Rousseau’s democratic criteria than all those trying to give lessons in democracy. Conflicts in complex societies are most often won by those with more power, which is why the rich manage to avoid prison because they can afford to hire top lawyers and instead arrange for state repression to be directed against someone one who stole a banana in a supermarket rather than a financial criminal who ruined a bank. In the city of New York for example where 75 per cent of the population is white, 80 per cent of management posts are occupied by whites who make up only 20 per cent of incarcerated people.
3. Equality in status and wealth: A look at the Forbes 2010 list shows who the richest people in each of the countries currently bombing Libya are and the difference between them and those who earn the lowest salaries in those nations; a similar exercise on Libya will reveal that in terms of wealth distribution, Libya has much more to teach than those fighting it now, and not the contrary. So here too, using Rousseau’s criteria, Libya is more democratic than the nations pompously pretending to bring democracy. In the USA, 5 per cent of the population owns 60 per cent of the national wealth, making it the most unequal and unbalanced society in the world.
4. No luxuries: according to Rousseau there can’t be any luxury if there is to be democracy. Luxury, he says, makes wealth a necessity which then becomes a virtue in itself, it, and not the welfare of the people becomes the goal to be reached at all cost, ‘Luxury corrupts both the rich and the poor, the one through possession and the other through envy; it makes the nation soft and prey to vanity; it distances people from the State and enslaves them, making them a slave to opinion.’
Is there more luxury in France than in Libya? The reports on employees committing suicide because of stressful working conditions even in public or semi-public companies, all in the name of maximising profit for a minority and keeping them in luxury, happen in the West, not in Libya.

Anonymous said...

The American sociologist C. Wright Mills wrote in 1956 that American democracy was a ‘dictatorship of the elite’. According to Mills, the USA is not a democracy because it is money that talks during elections and not the people. The results of each election are the expression of the voice of money and not the voice of the people. After Bush senior and Bush junior, they are already talking about a younger Bush for the 2012 Republican primaries. Moreover, as Max Weber pointed out, since political power is dependent on the bureaucracy, the US has 43 million bureaucrats and military personnel who effectively rule the country but without being elected and are not accountable to the people for their actions. One person (a rich one) is elected, but the real power lies with the caste of the wealthy who then get nominated to be ambassadors, generals, etc.
How many people in these self-proclaimed democracies know that Peru’s constitution prohibits an outgoing president from seeking a second consecutive mandate? How many know that in Guatemala, not only can an outgoing president not seek re-election to the same post, no one from that person’s family can aspire to the top job either? Or that Rwanda is the only country in the world that has 56 per cent female parliamentarians? How many people know that in the 2007 CIA index, four of the world’s best-governed countries are African? That the top prize goes to Equatorial Guinea whose public debt represents only 1.14 per cent of GDP?
Rousseau maintains that civil wars, revolts and rebellions are the ingredients of the beginning of democracy. Because democracy is not an end, but a permanent process of the reaffirmation of the natural rights of human beings which in countries all over the world (without exception) are trampled upon by a handful of men and women who have hijacked the power of the people to perpetuate their supremacy. There are here and there groups of people who have usurped the term ‘democracy’ – instead of it being an ideal towards which one strives it has become a label to be appropriated or a slogan which is used by people who can shout louder than others. If a country is calm, like France or the USA, that is to say without any rebellions, it only means, from Rousseau’s perspective, that the dictatorial system is sufficiently repressive to pre-empt any revolt.
It wouldn’t be a bad thing if the Libyans revolted. What is bad is to affirm that people stoically accept a system that represses them all over the world without reacting. And Rousseau concludes: ‘Malo periculosam libertatem quam quietum servitium – translation – If gods were people, they would govern themselves democratically. Such a perfect government is not applicable to human beings.’ To claim that one is killing Libyans for their own good is a hoax.

Anonymous said...

What Lessons for Africa?
After 500 years of a profoundly unequal relationship with the West, it is clear that we don’t have the same criteria of what is good and bad. We have deeply divergent interests. How can one not deplore the ‘yes’ votes from three sub-Saharan countries (Nigeria, South Africa and Gabon) for resolution 1973 that inaugurated the latest form of colonisation baptised ‘the protection of peoples’, which legitimises the racist theories that have informed Europeans since the 18th century and according to which North Africa has nothing to do with sub-Saharan Africa, that North Africa is more evolved, cultivated and civilised than the rest of Africa?
It is as if Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Algeria were not part of Africa, Even the United Nations seems to ignore the role of the African Union in the affairs of member states. The aim is to isolate sub Saharan African countries to better isolate and control them. Indeed, Algeria (US$16 billion) and Libya (US$10 billion ) together contribute 62 per cent of the US$42 billion which constitute the capital of the African Monetary Fund (AMF). The biggest and most populous country in sub Saharan Africa, Nigeria, followed by South Africa are far behind with only 3 billion dollars each.
It is disconcerting to say the least that for the first time in the history of the United Nations, war has been declared against a people without having explored the slightest possibility of a peaceful solution to the crisis. Does Africa really belong anymore to this organisation? Nigeria and South Africa are prepared to vote ‘Yes’ to everything the West asks because they naively believe the vague promises of a permanent seat at the Security Council with similar veto rights. They both forget that France has no power to offer anything. If it did, Mitterand would have long done the needful for Helmut Kohl’s Germany.
A reform of the United Nations is not on the agenda. The only way to make a point is to use the Chinese method – all 50 African nations should quit the United Nations and only return if their longstanding demand is finally met, a seat for the entire African federation or nothing. This non-violent method is the only weapon of justice available to the poor and weak that we are. We should simply quit the United Nations because this organisation, by its very structure and hierarchy, is at the service of the most powerful.
We should leave the United Nations to register our rejection of a worldview based on the annihilation of those who are weaker. They are free to continue as before but at least we will not be party to it and say we agree when we were never asked for our opinion. And even when we expressed our point of view, like we did on Saturday 19 March in Nouakchott, when we opposed the military action, our opinion was simply ignored and the bombs started falling on the African people.
Today’s events are reminiscent of what happened with China in the past. Today, one recognises the Ouattara government, the rebel government in Libya, like one did at the end of the Second World War with China. The so-called international community chose Taiwan to be the sole representative of the Chinese people instead of Mao’s China. It took 26 years when on 25 October 1971, for the UN to pass resolution 2758 which all Africans should read to put an end to human folly. China was admitted and on its terms – it refused to be a member if it didn’t have a veto right. When the demand was met and the resolution tabled, it still took a year for the Chinese foreign minister to respond in writing to the UN Secretary General on 29 September 1972, a letter which didn’t say yes or thank you but spelt out guarantees required for China’s dignity to be respected.

Anonymous said...

What does Africa hope to achieve from the United Nations without playing hard ball? We saw how in Cote d’Ivoire a UN bureaucrat considers himself to be above the constitution of the country. We entered this organisation by agreeing to be slaves and to believe that we will be invited to dine at the same table and eat from plates we ourselves washed is not just credulous, it is stupid.
When the African Union endorsed Ouattara’s victory and glossed over contrary reports from its own electoral observers simply to please our former masters, how can we expect to be respected? When South African president Zuma declares that Ouattara hasn’t won the elections and then says the exact opposite during a trip to Paris, one is entitled to question the credibility of these leaders who claim to represent and speak on behalf of a billion Africans.
Africa’s strength and real freedom will only come if it can take properly thought out actions and assume the consequences. Dignity and respect come with a price tag. Are we prepared to pay it? Otherwise, our place is in the kitchen and in the toilets in order to make others comfortable. ”
(Jean-Paul Pougala)


Gaddafi suppressed rebellion, revolt and attempts to assassinate or threaten his leadership by any means necessary, just as would be expected by any Government he was responsible for the torture of his opponents just like the West are well known to do around the world by proxy.

Political opponents went missing just as they do everywhere in the developing world, and sometimes even in the West, as did the Dr Kelly who spoke out about the war on Iraq and Britain’s ‘sexed up’ claims about weapons of mass destruction that’s all he did and he paid dearly for it. A quick google of Western atrocities reveals thousands of instances of direct torture and rendition....
Gaddafi’s children enjoyed a lavish lifestyle just like Mark Thatcher did when his mother was Prime Minister etc etc etc .........

There is so much more evidence of Western Hypocrisy and sharp practices comparable to those Gaddafi was accused of, and I’m sure his detractors (Uncle Tom’s) will be keen to enumerate his many so called wrongs, and you are more than welcome to do so.
My take is that they will only minutely detract from what is an in-exhaustive record of the positive legacy Gaddafi left with Africa.........
As for the length of his tenure, at first I agreed that he had outstayed his welcome, but now after learning much more about his Pan African agenda I would suggest that there was still very much for him to do in the liberation of Africa. It would appear that our ability to deal with the imperialist agendas of both the West and now the East in Africa, depends on the wisdom and experience of seasoned leaders, who better than a man with 42 years of Pan Africanist leadership experience of outsmarting the exploitatory agendas of the West .
He was not perfect, but in the Pan African context he was as close to perfection as any leader anytime in the History of Africa...... I challenge anybody to name an African leader in History whose contributions to our liberation even come close to those of Colonel Muammar Muhammad Abu Minyar al-Gaddafi

Anonymous said...

John Obienu, do you know the real meaning of Democracy ?

Anonymous said...

And also John, would you like to describe in your own words why you think Gaddafi is a madman ?