Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Muammar's sons and the man who ate sour grapes - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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You wake up and try to gauge your mood. All you remember is that yesterday something infiltrated your inner feelings, stole your optimism, and the few moments of joy that remained. Perhaps you were able to liberate yourself from this depression before you went to bed, but you are unsure when sleep knocked at your door, and took you to the world of the subconscious. All you remember is President Muammar Gaddafi’s outburst of outlandish, insane statements, pouring out from the television screen.

In his delusion, Gaddafi seemed positive that Libya, during his era, was at the forefront of the world’s largest continents: Africa, Asia, and Latin America. He also claimed to be the “King of Kings” for all Africa. Certainly, you need not care what happens to such a man, who is now just eating sour grapes, but you must bear a sense of sorrow for his offspring. Indeed, Gaddafi’s sons; Saif al-Islam, Mohammed, al-Saadi, Hannibal and Motasem, as well as his daughter Aisha, must be aware of the troublesome destiny awaiting them. Their sense of family loyalty means they have to cling onto a sinking ship, even though they see others donning life jackets, having once been associates of the “King of Kings”, leaving the man who ate sour grapes to meet his destiny alone.

Over many decades, Colonel Muammar Gaddafi lived through numerous adventures and conspiracies, thus prompting him to adopt the psychological theory of “kill or be killed”, as a means of living. Such logic is natural for those who live in a game of murderers and victims. I still remember a former official, who had worked in an authoritarian regime, saying: “You are only disturbed by the first murder; the first corpse is both worrying and upsetting. Afterwards, you must decide whether to carry on with the game or get out. To exit would effectively mean retirement, and living in the shadows, but to continue means that you are running the risk of being a corpse yourself.” It is certain that Muammar Gaddafi must have – many years ago – chosen to carry on with the game, despite the risks and gambles involved. However, did his sons choose to participate in this game? Or were they forced to do so? Very likely, they are the victims of their education, which has been ingrained into their mentality. Gaddafi was consumed by his delusions, in a style similar to Don Quixote, and his children could not escape from this. Now, they find themselves in the final chapter, with the conclusion imminent, but in a manner contrary to what had previously been told. After the tale comes to an end, they will be alone facing their reality, as everyone else will have gone their own way.