MIDDLE EAST

The new Gaddafi, the past makes a comeback

Some Arab news may sound strange. For example, there are those who wish to see the return of old rulers, or their heirs, or any of their close relatives or active members from the elite of past regimes now that the winds of the Arab Spring have blown away.

There are those in Tunisia who passionately long for the era of Bourguiba and even that of Zine El Abidine Ben Ali. In Yemen, there are those who want to see the rise of Ali Abdullah Saleh’s close relative, irrespective of the role Saleh had played in Yemen in pushing the country to war with Iranian-backed gangs.

What is gone is finished, the past is done and the future is inevitable. Crying over spilt milk and resurrecting idols of the past is downright condemnable for us and for such leaders who brought us to this point

Mashari Althaydi

Gaddafi’s possible heir

In Libya, Muammar Gaddafi was a clear example of the ruler who brings misfortune upon himself, his people, his neighbors and all those who were destined to interact with him.

In this Libya, because of the ineptitude of its present crop of politicians to build a national consensus and to establish a new Libyan sociopolitical contract, we get to read the news that the son of the dead despot, Saif al-Islam Muammar Gaddafi, has decided to enter the presidential race, with an electoral program that “seeks to restore the Libyan state and make it inclusive of everyone”.

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The announcement was made by Ayman Boras, Gaddafi’s spokesperson, on Monday during a press conference in Tunisia. Boras said: “The Libyan crisis will not be resolved without the vision of Saif al-Islam Gaddafi who has the support of the majority of the Libyan people.”

Praising Saddam Hussein’s era

Even in Iraq we find those who praise the era of Saddam Hussein and the state, education, security, national unity and public services back then.

Imagine that such statements come from the people of Basra and Nasiriyah and not from Ramadi or Diyala!

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It is well known that the more people move away from the past, the less they remember the pain it caused. The illusion of distance obscures the difference between what happened then and what is happening now.

The daunting troubles of our time blur the vision and misinform the mind. There is no consideration beyond the desire to get rid of the present painful reality.

What is gone is finished, the past is done and the future is inevitable. Crying over spilt milk and resurrecting idols of the past is downright condemnable for us and for such leaders who brought us to this point.

This article is also available in Arabic.

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Saudi journalist Mashari Althaydi presents Al Arabiya News Channel’s “views on the news” daily show “Maraya.” He has previously held the position of a managing senior editor for Saudi Arabia & Gulf region at pan-Arab newspaper Asharq al-Awsat. Althaydi has published several papers on political Islam and social history of Saudi Arabia. He appears as a guest on several radio and television programs to discuss the ideologies of extremist groups and terrorists. He tweets under @MAlthaydy.

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Last Update: Saturday, 24 March 2018 KSA 08:18 - GMT 05:18
Disclaimer: Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not reflect Al Arabiya English's point-of-view.
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