Wednesday, April 28, 2004

That Guy from Libya 

Never let it be said that Moammar Kadafi (or however you prefer to Romanize his name) doesn't still know how to make an entrance, as the LA Times makes clear:
Emerging from his jet, Kadafi was resplendent in a brown robe. Members of his entourage brought along a black tent — the kind their leader prefers to sleep in. They set it up on the grounds of the Val Duchesse palace, Belgium's residence for visiting dignitaries.

Kadafi moved regally when his heavily guarded motorcade arrived at EU headquarters, waving at a crowd of Libyan and African students who greeted him with percussion and cheers. A smaller group of protesters was kept out of sight.

Kadafi walked amid a phalanx of young female bodyguards in stylish blue fatigues, their brimmed caps jammed over dark eyes and long black hair. Four of the guards stood on stage directly behind Kadafi when he spoke.
Yep. Still got it.

Of course, that's not all he still knows how to do. Reports of Kadafi's repentence for years of supporting terrorism may be premature:
I hope that we shall not be obliged by any evil to go back or to look backward," Kadafi said. "We do hope that we shall not be forced or obliged to go back to those days where we bomb our cars or put explosive belts around our belts and around our women so that we will not be searched or harassed in our homes as is taking place now in Iraq and in Palestine.

"The victims are women and children," he said. "We don't want to be forced to do that."
Looking for more statements by the Colonel? This site purports to be "The Official Site of Muammar Gadafi" (but also spells his name "Gathafi"), and includes pearls of wisdom on such topics as the solution to the Israel/Palestine problem (a single state called "Isratine") and Kashmir.

I, for one, am an admirer of Kadafi's prose style, as exemplified in his magnum opus, the Green Book, which features free-form metaphysical and political theorizing written in an undergraduate-with-a-minimum-word-count-to-hit style, and includes passages such as
The national factor, the social bond, works automatically to impel a nation towards survival, in the same way that the gravity of an object works to keep it as one mass surrounding its centre. The dissolution and dispersion of atoms in an atomic bomb are the result of the explosion of the nucleus, which is the focus of gravitation for the particles around it. When the factor of unity in those component systems is destroyed and gravity is lost, every atom is separately dispersed. This is the nature of matter. It is an established natural law. To disregard it or to go against it is damaging to life.
So take a page from Kadafi's book: don't disregard gravity.

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