Gadaffi and Goliath

When David slew Goliath with a sling we are told that all Israel rejoiced at his death. When I read such words I can't quite understand, I can't get excited about any human beings death. I think it is hard for those of us who have lived in stable democracies all our lives to imagine how it must feel when the person whom you have lived in fear of is within your grasp to remove from power. I heard an interesting story about two Libyan civil servants who were alone with Gadaffi one day when he was inspecting one of his many palaces. Gadaffi stood on the roof at the very edge of the building with his back to the men. "Why didn't you push him when you had the chance?" One asked the other,"I was afraid he could fly was the reply" Its not easy to remove a dictator, too often dictators build up such an image of themselves that people ascribe to them powers and knowledge they don't possess. It is the same with bullies whether they are on the school playground or in the workplace or even within family relationships. Such people play on the fear of the other person. The only way to rid yourself of a bully is to stand up to them. Eventually that is what the people of Libya have done and for that they should be congratulated. Now I know when David stood up to Goliath, he not only used his sling. He eventually used Goliath's sword and chopped off his head. Such barbarity doesn't sit well with our rule of law. Yet it is reflected in the response of the fighters who discovered the wounded Gadaffi cowering in a hole, brandishing a golden pistol. He was pulled from the sewer unceremoniously, where he had been hiding and dragged through the street and eventually faced his end at the hands of mob rule. I noticed that a number of commentators used the scriptural quotation, " Those who live by the sword will die by the sword." Others have criticised the manner in which he died suggesting that he should have been brought to trial. The thing that I find myself uncomfortable with is the way the conflict has been reported. Our 24 Hour News Channels have virtually turned a war into a form of entertainment. The showing of Gadaffi's death on national television has elements of a snuff movie about it. I find that a bit distasteful. Just because we have the technology to do something doesn't mean we have to do it. There is little doubt that the vast majority of Libyans are delighted to see the end of this monstrous regime. It is going to take time to see democracy begin to take shape. Listening to the people of Libya describe their hopes and dreams now that Gadaffi has been removed is inspiring and at the same time a rebuke to those of us who have become a bit jaded and skeptical about the role politics can play in bringing about a more just society. [youtube][/youtube] The people outside St Paul's in London have come to the conclusion that politics in the West has become corrupted by the world of corporate companies and disgraced bankers. Its certainly not simply a local movement. They see themselves as part of a world wide movement that is challenging the conventional wisdom that has been built up around economics and social cohesion. They are looking to a wider audience, beyond conventional politicians and asking questions about the current economic system. Is it fit for purpose? No doubt this movement has its fair share of the rent an anarchist brigade" yet it seems to me that there is genuine frustration with those who have been elected. Politicians today need to take seriously the change that is happening in the public perception of things and they should be aware of the consensous among many who are saying "its not working". Could it be that the Arab Spring might in some way spring our economic academics into thinking about alternatives to the economics that conventionally we all seem to have followed without too much questioning. I think reformation could be in the air. I'm continually reminded of the words of Jesus, " What does it profit a person if in gaining the whole world they lose all that makes them the person God intended them to be." I somehow think this happen to Gadaffi, he lost his way, lost his people, and lost his soul. Let's be careful that non of us live in such a way that another is in fear of us, be it neighbour, work colleague, or family member. As we judge so we will be judged.

Posted By: Jimmy   On: 23 Oct 2011   At: 7:40pm

I watched two programmes today that reviewed the weeks news, and both of them did what you have done here, went from Gadaffi to the the protest ar St Paul’s without a word about the community of 86 families who were forcibly evicted on wednesday. Don’t they matter to anyone?


Posted By: I talker   On: 23 Oct 2011   At: 1:05pm


Glad that you found the article helpful


Posted By: h   On: 23 Oct 2011   At: 9:01am

What a well written article - and, I am sure, just as many of us have been feeling.

Lets hope that new changes and a certain freedom for Libyia move in the right direction.  Thank-you!

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