So the King of Bling ended up cornered like a rat in a drain pipe. Dragged out, he pleaded for his life but the young rebels who had suffered so much at his hands shot him dead, but then the reward was always “Dead or Alive”.
The human rights lawyers are all wringing their hands at the thought of lost income that a show trial of Gaddafi would have generated. Bleeding hearts are complaining that Gaddafi should not have been executed.
The rebel leaders who are now the de factor government of Libya would have preferred a trial as part of a reconciliation process, but it is unfair to accuse the young rebels who are citizens in arms. They have never been a trained military force. Their achievement has been driven by passion and hatred of a regime where, even in the final days, the name Gaddafi could still create a fearful reaction. It was unrealistic to ever expect these young people to behave like well-trained soldiers acting to the Geneva Convention.
In the end, Gaddafi was humiliated in death and deserved no better. Now that he is dead any counter revolution is frustrated. The irony is that the situation is a direct result of his paranoid personality cult where even Libyan footballers were denied a name for fear they might compete with Gaddafi. By making certain that his name was the only public name in Libya, Gaddafi has denied other family members and supporters the fame, or infamy, around which a counter revolution might be undertaken.
Had Gaddafi been tried in Libya, or the Netherlands, his continued existence would have threatened the new temporary government. During the next 80 days a country which has never known democracy has set itself the task of creating a constitution and electing a government for the first time in free elections. That would have been hard enough in a country where there were departments of government, but Libya has been stripped of all the conventional organs of government during Gaddafi’s dictatorial rule.
So the people of Libya now have to put in place all of the government structures necessary to keep the lights on, pump the sewage, maintain drinking water supplies, regulate the traffic, and get the oil flowing to generate income. All the things that people in a democracy take for granted. While those essential services are being maintained, the Libyans have to decide what form of democracy they want, how elections will be run and how the rights of the citizens will be protected in a country that is two regions, East and West, with tribal customs and loyalties.
Although the tasks are hard, Libyans have shown the passion and determination required to achieve the success they desire. The end result may not be what western countries expect but there is no reason why Libya should accept anything that they do not want.