Towards Better Democracy

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An Alert: Two Issues for the Attention of the TNC of Libya


This article is the latest in a series aiming to inform Libyans and to reach policymakers on matters, which because of the conflict on the ground, may not get the attention they merit and this is true of this occasion.

Two issues are worth raising of perhaps equal import.

Calming Fears on Future Libyan Oil Policy

A series of reports over the last seven days, of which those below are a sample, suggest the need for the TNC to make a statement on how the new Libya expects to handle its oil and gas assets. While the oil and gas policy of the future free Libyan government is not known to anybody, the TNC is better placed than most to suggest what future course Libya is likely to adopt.

As the conflict in Libya draws out and no immediate resolution is at present in sight, the need for a competent body to speak on behalf of the Libyan people becomes more urgent by the day.

At the very least, the TNC could calm fears by confirming that Libya will continue to uphold and honour existing agreements. That surely would be the initial position of the new Libyan government whatever policy it sought to put into place after that.

Oil companies fear nationalisation in Libya, Sylvia Pfeifer and Javier Blas, Financial Times, 22 March, 2011,

Oil Companies That Gave ‘Bonuses’ to Libya Also Lobbied Against Disclosure Rule, Marian Wang ProPublica 27 March 2011

Gaddafi Asset Confusion and Future Asset Transfer

The second point to make is that, with the confusion as to the assets to be frozen under the UN mandate, see example story below, the people best placed to clarify the situation are those in Libya with knowledge of who owns what. The TNC would be well advised to establish a Libyan Assets Control Group which could help and communicate with parties seeking clarification on Libyan asset issues, and to assure the safe transfer of those assets in the post-Gaddafi era.

Libya Sanctions Cause Confusion, Cassell Bryan-Low and Deborah Hall, Wall Street Journal, March 31, 2011

US extends Libya sanctions to more oil companies, AP 23 March 2011, carried in the Economic Times of India

Information for Libyans

For Libyans seeking to know more about the oil and gas industry in their country and of the other companies located there here is a link with exhaustive information. And this is the regime’s website, Libyan Investment

The present article constitutes an editorial and represents no other view than the author’s own.

Malcolm D B Munro 31 March, 2011

Filed under: Culture, , , ,

The Basis for Sound Financial Government: some guidance for the TNC of Libya


Egypt, Libya and Tunisia are rewriting the nature of their government with a view to creating,each at their own pace, a nation based on sound democratic principles. Inevitably, the results will be flawed by compromise and by a need to get something into place which allows a starting point for each country to undertake its first free and fair democratic elections. Perhaps one or more of the governments will build into the process the idea of perfectibility and mechanisms to provide for continuous improvement of government.

However each turns out, the democratic structures of a state are only a part of government. In fact, they only provide the means of government by electing, in as transparent a way as possible, representatives, as fairly as possible, for limited durations.

Though essential to good government, this is only one half of the equation. What separates weak democracies from strong ones is sound fiscal policy. The previous article, Switzerland as a Model for Libya’s Financial Future, suggested where models might be sought for financials systems designed around effective government financial structures such as a central bank, treasury and so on.

Having the right structures in place only provides a basis for making financial decisions and policies. The fiscal decisions themselves have to be sound and responsible.  This article touches on where the Interim National Council of Libya might look for guidance on what constitutes good fiscal discipline and what are sound fiscally responsible policies.

The Comeback America Initiative worked with the public policy and international studies programme at Stanford University to develop a fiscal responsibility index.  When applied at a global level the results were a little surprising. Among 34 counties surveyed, Australia and New Zealand held first and second place respectively. We are not concerned here with how dreadful the score was for some leading industrialized nations. What is notable is the high ranking of governments that one wouldn’t necessarily have expected to score so highly when compared to those nations who actually came very low in the ranking. Despite widespread news of large scale corruption cases in China, its ranking is excellent, being placed fifth. Chile and Brazil come seventh and tenth respectively. The results should be encouraging to any government looking to improve its financial responsibility.

If Libya is seeking a framework around which to build a world class fiscal set of policies, recognizing that the first beneficiary of such a standard is the country and people of the country themselves, Libya could do worse than look at what the Australians did in 1996 to set themselves on a path that led directly  to the performance that today puts them in first place in terms of good governmental fiscal responsibility.

Only a close study of the record would show just what Australians put into place at that time but a simple summary here should be sufficient to elicit interest and persuade skeptics that such a study is worthwhile and will pay dividends if implemented.

The Australian Government Treasury Intergenerational Report of 2007 has the following to say about the process adopted.

In 1996, the [Australian] Government implemented a medium-term framework [5 to 10 years], for fiscal policy. This has formed the basis for government fiscal management over the past decade and has delivered sound fiscal outcomes. Key elements include the Charter of Budget Honesty Act 1998 (the Charter) and the medium-term fiscal strategy. Both ensure fiscal policy is characterised by a disciplined approach to budgeting, transparent reporting and accountability.

The Charter requires the Government to frame its fiscal strategy having regard to: fiscal risks, including by maintaining Australian general government debt at prudent levels; the state of the economic cycle; the adequacy of national saving; the stability and integrity of the tax system; and the financial effect of policy decisions on future generations.

Consistent with the Charter’s requirements, the Government’s medium-term fiscal strategy is to maintain budget balance, on average, over the course of the economic cycle. Supplementary objectives include maintaining fiscal surpluses over the forward estimates period while economic growth prospects remain sound; not increasing the overall tax burden from its 1996-97 level; and improving the Australian Government net worth position over the medium to longer term.

The Charter also requires the Government to produce, at least every five years, an intergenerational report assessing the long-term sustainability of current Government policies, including by taking account of the financial implications of demographic change. By explicitly showing the long-term fiscal consequences of its policies, the Government has committed to improving its transparency and accountability to the community. The report also is an important tool in monitoring and improving policies and frameworks to facilitate sustainability through time.

Also central to the macroeconomic framework is the inflation targeting regime that aims to achieve Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation of 2 to 3 per cent per year on average over the course of the economic cycle. The inflation targeting regime was formalised by the Government in August 1996 in a ‘Statement on the Conduct of Monetary Policy’, issued jointly by the Treasurer and the Governor of the Reserve Bank. This statement formalised the Reserve Bank’s operational independence in achieving this goal. It was recently renewed on 18 September 2006 between the Treasurer and the incoming Reserve Bank Governor.

Material in square brackets has been added by the author of the present article.

It will be immediately clear to the alert reader what almost all of the needed elements for a sound financial framework are. The two notable tools that the Australians availed themselves of are:

  • Charter of Budget Honesty Act
  • An intergenerational report assessing the long-term sustainability of current Government policies

The setting of a firm base, along with a rigorous periodic measuring, has in no small measure led to the success of the Australian government achieving and maintaining fiscal responsibility of a very high standard.

This article has no intention on embarking into areas of discussion of policy questions save to note that the setting of realistic inflation targets is at the heart of all such successful fiscal policies.

The Libyan government, whether in the incarnation of the TNC, or some intermediate body, does not need to reinvent the wheel, nor does it need to follow precedent simply because such and such systems and policies are followed in the region. Just as author in To the TNC: Safeguarding Libyan Oil and Gas Resources, a discussion and some suggestions , urged the setting up of working groups to find best practices for the Libyan oil interests, working groups can be formed to study various fiscal areas for best practices and report the findings back to the interested Libyan authorities. The purpose of this article has been to suggest that outstanding examples of fiscally responsible policies exist and material on them is not hard to find.

Malcolm D B Munro 30 March, 2011

Filed under: Culture, ,

Switzerland as a Model for Libya’s Financial Future


Libya, unlike the two other states in the region on path to realizing ambitions of being democratic states, has had its house of state gutted. Whereas the other two, Egypt and Tunisia have much of the furniture of previous regimes in place, and will, and are, sorting through what they wish to keep, what they want to refurbish and what they wish to discard, Libya comes to the threshold of democracy untrammeled on two counts of previous clutter.

The personal nature of much of the previous ownership in Libya means that, with the transfer of the assets to the new Libyan government at one stroke, so to speak, the cleaning is done. Libyans can dispense the Gaddafi and associates wealth and ownership as they see fit.

The other side of this is more onerous. The closed nature of Libyan society for the past 40 years means that, from a commercial point of view, Libya is undeveloped. Property and tourism are two areas in which Libyan could enjoy growth. Let’s put those aside for a future discussion.

With so much wealth concentrated in a very few hands, a greater concentration than for any other country in the region, Libya enjoys a unique position where the financial slate can be completely rewritten with little disruption to existing interests.

In fact, the majority of the hands holding that wealth will likely, one way or another, not able to wrest any of the wealth back.

As the situation improves inside Libya, more and more information will feed to those countries where the regime’s wealth is held, and more and more of it will join the other already frozen assets. We really have only seen the tip of the iceberg at this point.

In the reasonably near future, Libya should be in possession of a substantial amount of untrammeled wealth, and there will be a rush of advisers and bankers from all over the world with freely given advise as to what to do with the money and how to invest it. Libya would be advised rather to look to those states which have successfully applied the principles of a sovereign wealth fund and, in the process, Libyans, all six million of you, will make the pleasant discovery that Libya is a reasonably rich country.

Libya enters the 21st century, at least in some respects, in an enviable position; a good bank balance, an almost absence of debts, no immediate calls to spend vast sums of money, and best of all, with a financially blank slate.

In considering what kind of state Libya wishes to be in the future, the Interim National Council of Libya has free reign to decide. There is no existing constitution which would require amendment. There are no power brokers, such as the army, to appease, and existing financial interests to serve, as there are in Egypt. Nobody is pointing a gun at Libya’s head as to pressure of time. The people of Libya are preoccupied and will be for some time. Libya has the time, and is in the position to, design well chosen financial systems which can be based on the best practices upheld elsewhere.

It is in this spirit that one can approach Interim National Council of Libya’s A Vision of Democratic Libya, dated 29 March, 2011, and consider that the vision is an expression of the kind of society and state that Libyans, as expressed by the Interim National Council ,would like to build. And, given that the vision does indeed represent the aspirations of Libyans, there is no reason why it should not successfully come about.

Thus, Clause 1 of the Vision statement, which states in part, “The constitution will also clarify the rights and obligations of citizens in a transparent manner…,” looks to a state built on this principle.

Clause 6 commits to the principle of peace, truth, justice and equality. Clause 7a talks of “creating effective economic institutions..” and Clause 7b stresses “genuine economic partnerships between .. a strong and productive public sector, a free private sector and a supportive and effective civil society.”

There is no impediment to Libya designing and building, not just a civil society, and a fully representative democratic government, but also, because it has to, a set of sound financial systems. While Switzerland is renowned as a banking haven to a few, to the rest of the world, the country is a model for financial rectitude. Why shouldn’t Switzerland serve as a model to Libya?

Given the principles upon Libya wishes to build its future, as outlined in the Vision document, there are other models upon which Libya could base its systems, Hong Kong and Singapore being two examples. Whichever model Libya does choose, there seems no reason for it not being one that offers sound financial systems. Why, given the position Libya is in, would you want to choose anything other than a good model?

In putting into place a state which serves as a financial model for the region, a number of benefits immediately come to mind. Libya is sufficiently far away from the Gulf States to not be in competition with them, and the states close to Libya, some of whom have offered little in the way of financial rectitude in the past, will benefit from a financially stable state, that remains conservative in its fiscal policies. And, with no debt, there is no reason that Libya should not stay in that position for at least the foreseeable future.

Malcolm D B Munro, 29 March, 2011

Filed under: Culture, , , ,

To the TNC: Safeguarding Libyan Oil and Gas Resources, a discussion and some suggestions


The relationship of a government to the oil and gas reserves, home based industry and shipping, and leasing of blocks, is a problematic one which democratic governments approach in a fundamentally different way from non-democratic governments. The as-yet-to-be-formed government of Libya will inevitably find itself at odds with the course taken, and the objectives pursued by, its predecessor. To enable the new government to be in a position to make informed decisions, and formulate meaningful policy the proposal outlined here seeks to provide the new Libyan government with the information it needs to make effective changes to the existing structures.

In the final analysis the oil and gas reserves of a country belong to all of the people who are safeguarded in their interests and ownership, on their behalf, by the government, usually through some dedicated national body.

Difficulties arise, because of the large sums of money involved, in setting up processes and institutions which allow for a transparency, such that the selling of oil and gas properties and state incomes are well defined and subject to sufficient checks and balances to avoid misuse, malpractice and outright theft, or simply commercial advantage-taking on the part of buyers of leases and provision of processing facilities within the national boundaries. These concerns extend to ensuring full, world class safety, hazards and release controls mechanisms.

A democratic government, in adopting policies in these areas, is less prone to being subject to ideologies, whose idiosyncrasies do not easily lend themselves either to international and industry best practices, nor to necessary levels of transparencies.

It has been suggested elsewhere in these posts, Oil and Gas Reserves: Patrimony of the Libyan People, that the Libyan TNC, and the yet-to-be-formed government of a democratic Libya, consider from the outset establishing a trust in which to place Libyan oil and gas assets.

The principal purpose of an oil and gas trust is to place, and keep, the assets and processes associated with those assets, at arm’s length from government, the Libyan government, so that long term strategies and policies can be adopted and embarked upon without day to day interference or changes being introduced at the whim of individual future governments and ministers.

Whatever approach is decided upon, it seem prudent and necessary to ensure that the newly established government places its most important assets on a firm and secure foundation such that flexibility can be adopted towards future changes of energy policies and market forces.

It is therefore suggested that four commissions be established at an early stage so that meaningful, relevant and up-to-date information is provided to incoming government members, and policies and structures and processes can be put into place to replace those existing deemed not to be suitable, or are inadequate, to the requirements of a democratic government without causing undue disruption.

At the highest level, it is suggested that the TNC empower, without delay, a Petroleum and Strategic Reserve Council which will serve to act, on the one hand, to take over and absorb those existing structure closely, too closely, associated with the previous regime, and, on the other, to act for the government-to-be and its yet-to-be-established ministries and be in a position to hand over at the appropriate time. In addition the council can serve to receive and guide the four commissions outlined below.

Commission A: to review existing oil and gas structures and strategies to identify the nature and ownership of existing assets and make recommendations as to what changes need to be made to put these assets on a legal footing.

Commission B: to review existing plant and pipelines to assess the integrity of them and to recommend changes to be made to ensure that plant and pipelines are in compliance with specifically adopted internationally recognized standards.

Commission C: conduct a review and report on best practices world wide for auctioning and leasing oil and gas assets.

Commission D: conduct a review of state ownership practices worldwide and evaluate the possible best options for Libya. It is suggested that an initial report be made to the government, ministry, or council, to permit that body to appraise selected courses of action. Commission D would them undertake more detailed studies of the selections and report back on a final basis.

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Libya Needs Time: Let’s Work Together to Get Rid of Gaddafi, Grant Libya Breathing Space, then Help Libya Create Democracy


Possibly I feel somewhat as Deelen (Deelen_Pillay 22 March) perhaps did when he saw the six pigs exceeding the speed limit as they passed him on the William Nichol highway, although the present tragic plight of Libyans can hardly be thought of in the same gaze as those of the pigs of the mid Rand in South Africa.

So, although I am at a loss to describe it, the plight of Libyans as they stand straddled, a nation divided by the contorted will of an obscene dictator, Tripoli their Berlin, is absolutely understandable.

Here is a nation of six million people, held in brutal captivity for 40 years, released in a brief moment of joyous demonstration on February 17, to hear wonderful ideas of democracy, freedom, justice: music to anyone’s ears. To be swept, a few days later in a tsunami of enthusiasm seven eighth the way across Libya from Benghazi, almost to the doors of the palace of the Great Man Himself in Tripoli, only to be thrown back a few days later by an assault, the viciousness and extraordinary violence of which we have only glimpsed, and with Gaddafi’s efforts to destroy the evidence, may not know the extend and depth of until the Hague prosecutors release to us the evidence they uncover and collect.

The violence wreathed upon unarmed Libyans has been horrendous and we must not underestimate the effect it has had upon them.

And so it may be the case that we in the West project too much of our enthusiasm with which we wish to embrace one more set of brothers and sisters in the Middle East into the warm and loving arms of world’s nations of democracies.

The few Libyans who had energy to respond to my silly hailing into the empty desert of Twitterland this morning, just a few hours ago, are most certainly right. (I must acknowledge the support of curioustip H, who stood with me in this moment of expression of pain, who says, “The next step in Libya is weapons (containment), and, more importantly, Reconciliation. Talk of revenge against pro Gadaffi supporters will only lead to civil war. This is the only way.”)

The body Libya has been most viciously assaulted, both psychically and physically under trying circumstances.

Those few days after February 17 were brief but I am certain that they are held in the minds of all Libyans, like a vast illumination, to show the way ahead.

In the meantime, Libyans cannot think about democracy right at this moment. They have other tasks to attend to and, in due course of time, they will attend to, and truly engage in, the joyous task of nation building.

As Gaddafi totters in the few hours left to him, before he is seen off the stage of life into the bowels of history, those he has held captive, both civilian and under force of arms, for there must be as few armies in the world as reluctantly under arms as those of the Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, whatever that was, need time, having taken off their uniforms, to join together as free Libyans.

Libyans need time to tend their sick, to bury their dead, to meet as brothers and sisters under the warm rays of the Mediterranean sun, sharing the light and life of freedom, to learn again what it is to be human. Libyans never lost this capacity. But under Gaddafi they seldom were allowed to express it.

Libyans need time for brother in arms to meet with fellow brother in arms, whichever side they had been forced onto, to weep together over lost family, and for time to hold up their heads, with their family members that have survived, to bury their dead in dignity.

For Libyans need time to discover each other, who they are, to discover that they are one nation and can speak with one voice as all nations do, except those divided by others against themselves.

Libyans need time to welcome forensic experts who will comb over the ground and hear and record witnesses, who will attest without hesitation to the almost unspeakable crimes committed, in not just these few recent days, but time to unlock the secrets held in the desert of past Gaddafi crimes. For if Gaddafi survives, we along with all Libyans, surely want to see him enjoy his day in court. Let us hope that, by that time, the world’s press and media, when reporting his grand, empty, staged gestures, report honestly, and not as they have done, in these past few weeks, shamelessly swallowing and regurgitating undigested his lies.

And Libyans need time to get together, to discover what wonders the Youth of #Feb17 movement were talking of, to hear at their leisure those messages, so quickly cut off in a momentary rush of freedom. Libyans need time to breathe and consider ways to embrace those ideas.

And Libyans also need time to discover what it is to be free. The imprisonment of the nation, now out of the nation jail cell, needs time to learn that life is not now composed of four walls, of perpetual confinement, that it offers more than suspicion, that kindly acts can be performed by all member of their nation. Former jailers need time to learn to live with those they jailed.

Libyans also need time to put into place the ordinary structures and institutions that adjoining nations take for granted, which they had even under their dictators.

So, let us stop for a moment and reflect, those of us in the West, so eagerly working on Libya’s behalf: give Libyans time and then we will all be able to work much more effectively.

For Libyans need, as Eartha Kitt said, in the song of what the Englishman needs where love is concerned, time.

Time to discover what it is to live, to be alive, to breathe freely, to speak freely, to get know each other. Time to welcome joyfully exiles home, not to, for the moment, take part in politics, there is time for that, but to know what they dreamed of, a country, just like any country.

Acknowledgments

Thanks to:

ღ.¸¸ Libeeya¸¸.ღ  @Freedom_7uriyah who tweets, “Beautiful piece.”

yahyasheikho786, “Muslims for Muslims by Muslims … first”, who has linked this piece to his blog at:  http://tinyurl.com/6l8n9cd,  the third post he had linked to.

Filed under: Culture, , , ,

Libya, How to Transition to Freedom, Statehood and Democracy: a Blueprint – ليبيا ، وكيفية الانتقال الى بناء الدولة والحرية والديمقراطية : مخطط


النص العربي هو دون الانجليزية

The present document is offered for guidance purposes only, should be seen as consultative. That is to say it is written as much as can be from the point of view, wishing to safeguard the interests of the Libyan people as they transition, Libya is in the rather unique position of creating a state, if not from Green Field principles, at least Brown Field. The latter will be addressed later in the document.

At its heart, the document recognizes the sovereign right of the Libyan people to choose and safeguard their own destiny. The rush to statehood should neither jeopardize Libya’s to choose its course wisely nor should it dally over nitpicking detail. The general aim should be to agree broad principles and argue detail later. The approach should be creating a structure which underpins the perfectibility of government rather than trying to create a perfect government. The distinction, if clearly made at the beginning will ensure rapid progress rather than a series of collisions with a series of roadblocks. The basic rule is that principle rules. Hew to this without waiver and must internal dissension will be avoided.

Necessary Stuff for the Transition National Council

The present blue print offers the outline for a the Draft Foundational Document which allows the two following provisions to be established and to be conducted simultaneously with the least possible disruption to the pursuance of all normal affairs of state. The outline attempts to indicate areas requiring attention and it is not suggested it is comprehensive and does not attempt to give detail as this is thought to be the discretion of the Transitional Council.

Transitional National Council will allow the following foundational steps in the creation of a fully functioning government having such instruments of state as the Transitional National Council identifies as necessary, which may include :

A constitution representing those principles as decided upon by the Libyan people as expressed through a referendum or other means

A framework for free and fair election and representative government

Provisions for the formation and support of political parties

Separation of state from which ever bodies by due process has been decided by the Libyan people

The provision of any other means required for the Republic of Libya to be fully functioning as a state, to be representative of, and for, its people on all bases decided, to be accepted by individual states, and by the international community, and to accept and uphold all of its international obligations

The provision of the necessary means to be provided on a transitional basis to allow the Republic of Libya to both fully function during the transitional stage and to carry out the work outlined above.

The allow the Transitional National Council to lead the nation seamlessly with all reasonable speed from the present time, with the ouster of the regime in Tripoli still to be achieved to the full implementation of what has been decided before hand as a starting point for a fully functional state, along the lines outlined above the following road map is offered as constituting the path along which the Transitional National Council has to progress and identifying at least some of the transition points which must be traversed in order to achieve full statehood. These would appear to be the minimum necessary. No suggestion of timescale is made since this is thought to be at the sole discretion of the Libyan people.

The following are not necessarily in the correct order of priority

The first order of a democratic nation, especially an emerging one, is security. Address security needs both for civil, police and armed forces, including such things as Coast Guard and Border Patrol. Look at working with allies, Arab or other, to refurbish land, sea and air assets. Suggest throwing away as much as you can. Set the goal as being to have the most modern equipment available. Work with armed forces such as Egypt for training and so on. If funds are limited at the beginning look at Lend-Lease or outright loan. You must secure the state as soon as you can.

Establishment of a United Nations mandated trust which holds and safeguards them on behalf of the Libyan people those assets belonging to the previous regime the seizure of which has been mandated by the United Nations Security Council and released to the Libyan Government at a mutually agreed point. Included with these assets identified by the UNSC, should be those assets inside Libya whose ownership is uncertain due the nature of the regime have little clear or legal separation of personal property and state property. Is is suggested that with such assets as are required to function the state of Libya in the transitional phase, be headed by a UN appointed trustee who is responsible for the provision of funds to allow the asset to function and is the beneficiary of profits or other income. The overall running of the asset should be performed by properly qualified staff and management responsible to one of the transitional committees outlined below. Assets falling into this category might include, among others, civil aviation infrastructure and equipment, including aircraft, communication, including state television. The provision of funding for procurement, operations, repair and refurbishment should be through the UN trust.

Assets of a commercial or private nature confiscated or having their ownership suspended until their rightful ownership can be resolved should be placed in the hand of the UN trust.

Generally speaking, in order to simplify, it is suggest that income from assets held by the UN trust be remitted to the trust.

The operation of government and procurement and construction and refurbishment of infrastructure and the like should be on a general accounting basis the requirement of fund for which be disbursed by the UN trust. The question of banking, central and otherwise and the many other sectors not tied to the progress of the transition process should be addressed by mechanisms decided upon by the transitional council.

Oil and Gas Reserves: Patrimony of the Libyan People

It is suggested that the Libyan people consider viewing the oil and gas reserves in Libya as belonging to the people of Libya and from either the onset or at the point of dissolution of the UN trust the oil and gas reserves be placed in a Libyan National trust. It is not suggested that the drilling, exploitation and production of oil and gas be in anything other than commercial hand, though this is entirely at the discretion of the Libyan people themselves.

The principle of suggesting a national trust for oil and gas reserves is to remove these from the vagaries of changes of administration in Libya, arbitrary policy changes, usurpation of Libyan sovereignty in an effort to gain access or sway over gaining access to these most valuable commodities. It is suggested that this approach not be cast in any ideological or political light but more of one of safeguarding the assets of the people for all time. The special case for this approach toward oil and gas reserves is compelling for a number of reasons. Some are particular to Libya and others to the general. As far as Libya is concerned, Libya has not had a well developed market and commercial economy. To thrust a newly born democratic state, or of any other political complexion into the world market place for these commodities is asking for rather more proprietriness to expect. At the general level, the global stress of large O&G corporations in pursuit of ever decreasing reserves is not a place that newly emergent Libya should willing place itself. At the stroke of a pen, Libya removes itself from the excessive of geopolitical and strategic gameplaying by states and corporations increasingly hungry for oil and gas reserves.

In evaluating this an option, Libya should consider consulting with the Norwegian government. In passing, and of no particular relevance to the present discussion, the Transitional Council might from the earliest opportunity explore establishing special ties with Norway on a government to government basis. If this is thought to be a curious, suffice it point out the similar demographics of the two countries.

Fun Stuff for the Libyan People

Road Map to a transition to Functioning State

A very rough outline of the transition points might include

Within 24 hours establish Working Groups – see paragraph on next page

Establish planning groups each with a particular area and identify task and timetable to carry out those task. Give yourselves 3 weeks to complete this process Present plan to person responsible at Transitional Council 48 hours later you should have elected committees and councils needed to perform the work. See next page for details.

At the very moment when the present incumbent head of state is deposed declare a unitary state

Infrastructure and related issues – making the present whole

Establish a United Nations Trusteeship for frozen assets and the like

Constitution – referendum or vote

Establishment of political parties

Elections

Present plan to United Nations adjudicated trust timetable for release of assets to Libyan Government

Formation of Government and obtain recognition world wide

Transfer assets and close UN Trusteeship

Declare state of Libya to be open for business

Identify tasks required to address issues and requirements associated with transition and appoint bodies to oversea and implement them

Here each transition point is identified with the tasks necessary to achieve that transition point

Rally the nation around: Team Libya – One Nation, One Goal

Design posters, slogans, posters, competitions sustain this activity throughout the transition process. This achieve unity of purpose and also build statehood. Have rallies children and for adults, carnivals. Make sure that these are sustained throughout the transition process. Don’t flag with this one.

At declaration of statehood, make sure you put Libya on the map. And rather than being lavish for head of state and kings and queens do it for the people. Every kind of sport. Friendlies not competitive. Big regional music concerts. Week long. Tribe celebrating their pride and individuality. Invite the world. Look at how South Africa did the World Cup but don’t spend on infrastructure. Invite the regions best architects to design pavilions, tents, striking structures but temporary. Look good not cost good. But not cheap either. Start this early. Will make the other tasks seem much easier.

Establish Working Groups for Basic Housekeeping and Security

Part one of security operation: Not one supporter of Gaddafi who has not joined your ranks must remain. Either they are with you or, there’s the door. No argument.

“We need you to help build our nation. Don’t want to help? Then leave, just go.”

Oh, and secure your borders, don’t want any stray individuals lurking about creating mayhem. You’ve had enough of that.

Part two of security operation: If you are not a policeman, registered as such, you don’t need a gun. So collect them up. everything. Create an arms dump. Put the call out. One dinar per kilogram or whatever price you want to pay. Go door to door. Blow up the dumps. Using safe practices. Establish a minor steel industry to recycle the arms.

There is no reason that Libya should not have arms sufficient to protect itself. What you don’t want is, that should arguments break out, that they get nasty. Know what I mean?

Next task, in the square of every town and city of  the nation, design the finest monument you can, and place it there with names of all the children, women and men who fell as part of the cause to create the new nation.

The tasks of working groups should be those that start tomorrow and disband when done. Have someone from Transitional National Council make a call for a team of national coordinators and regional coordinators, right all the way down to neighborhood coordinators.

Transition to Democracy Task Councils and Committees

Directly under Transitional Council have the following committees appointed. This is not a comprehensive list. Just to get you thinking along the right lines.

Youth Representative Council with sub-councils to advise all the way down to neighborhoods

Administrative Council

Fiducial and Finance Council

External Affairs Council

Internal Affairs Council

Constitutional and Matters of State Council

Democracy and Representational Government for Libya Council

Grassroots Political Party Formation Council

Police, Criminal Law Council

Legal Council

Ad Hoc Council for Emergency Services and Disaster Response

Have Councils break up tasks into meaningful clumps of work appoint Committees to work them.

Prepare for democracy, statehood and freedom

The world is with you.

Good luck

A Brief Discussion of Norway’s Oil Trust is here

ليبيا ، وكيفية الانتقال الى بناء الدولة والحرية والديمقراطية : مخطط

وتقدم هذه الوثيقة لأغراض التوجيه فقط، وينبغي أن ينظر إليها على أنها الاستشاري. وهذا يعني أنه مكتوب بقدر ما يمكن من وجهة نظر، الذين يرغبون في حماية مصالح الشعب الليبي لأنها تمر بمرحلة انتقالية ، ليبيا في موقف فريد بدلا من اقامة دولة، إن لم يكن من مبادئ الأخضر الميدانية، على الأقل براون الميدانية. وسيتم تناول هذا الأخير في وقت لاحق في الوثيقة.

في قلبها ، وتعترف الوثيقة الحق السيادي للشعب الليبي لاختيار وحماية مصيره. وينبغي أن التسرع في اقامة دولة فلسطينية لا يهدد ليبيا في اختيار مسارها بحكمة ولا ينبغي أن دالي خلال الاهتمام بالتفاصيل الانتقاد. وينبغي أن يكون الهدف العام للاتفاق على مبادئ واسعة ويجادل بالتفصيل لاحقا. ينبغي أن يكون النهج إنشاء هيكل التي تشكل أساس الكمال من الحكومة بدلا من محاولة تشكيل حكومة مثالية. التمييز، وإذا جعلت بوضوح في بداية ضمان التقدم السريع بدلا من سلسلة من الاصطدامات مع سلسلة من حواجز الطرق. القاعدة الأساسية هي أن قواعد المبدأ. وسيتم تجنب إقطع لهذا من دون التنازل وفتنة داخلية لا بد منه..

السخافات اللازمة من أجل الانتقال المجلس الوطني

الطباعة الحالي الأزرق يقدم الخطوط العريضة للمشروع وثيقة التأسيسية الذي يسمح بإنشاء الحكمين التالية والتي ستجرى في وقت واحد مع أقل إخلال ممكن لمتابعة جميع الشؤون العادية للدولة. مخطط محاولات لتحديد المجالات التي تتطلب اهتماما ، وليس من اقترح شامل وليس محاولة لاعطاء التفاصيل كما يعتقد أن تكون هذه السلطة التقديرية للمجلس الانتقالي.

والمجلس الوطني الانتقالي تسمح الخطوات التالية التأسيسية في تشكيل حكومة تعمل بشكل كامل وجود مثل هذه الصكوك من الدولة ، والمجلس الوطني الانتقالي ويحدد عند الاقتضاء ، والتي قد تشمل ما يلي :

وتمثل تلك المبادئ الدستور حسبما تقرر من قبل الشعب الليبي كما عبر عنها من خلال استفتاء أو غيرها من الوسائل

إطار لانتخابات حرة ونزيهة وحكومة تمثيلية

أحكام لتشكيل ودعم الأحزاب السياسية

الفصل بين الدولة التي لم يتقرر أي وقت مضى من قبل هيئات المحاكمة العادلة للشعب الليبي

توفير أية وسيلة أخرى لازمة لجمهورية ليبيا أن تعمل بكامل طاقتها كدولة ، ليكون ممثل ، ووشعبها على كل القواعد وقررت ، لتكون مقبولة من جانب الدول الفردية ، والمجتمع الدولي ، وإلى قبول واحترام جميع التزاماتها الدولية

وسوف ترد في توفير الوسائل اللازمة على أساس الانتقالية للسماح للجمهورية على حد سواء ليبيا لتعمل بشكل كامل خلال المرحلة الانتقالية ، والقيام بالأعمال المذكورة أعلاه.

السماح المجلس الوطني الانتقالي لقيادة الأمة بسلاسة مع جميع سرعة معقولة من الوقت الحاضر ، مع الاطاحة بنظام في طرابلس لا يزال يتعين تحقيقها في التنفيذ الكامل لما تم من قبل جهة وقررت كنقطة انطلاق لكامل دولة وظيفية ، وعلى طول خطوط المبينة أعلاه خارطة الطريق التالية كما عرضت على طول الطريق التي تشكل فيها المجلس الوطني الانتقالي والتقدم وتحديد ما لا يقل عن بعض النقاط التي تمر بمرحلة انتقالية يجب اجتيازه لتحقيق اقامة دولة فلسطينية كاملة. ومن شأن هذه يبدو أن الحد الأدنى الضروري. لم يرصد أي اقتراح جدول زمني منذ ويعتقد أن هذا بناء على تقدير والوحيد للشعب الليبي.

وفيما يلي ليس بالضرورة بالترتيب الصحيح الأولوية

النظام الأول من دولة ديمقراطية ، وخصوصا الناشئة واحد ، هو الأمن. معالجة الاحتياجات الأمنية لكل من الشرطة المدنية والقوات المسلحة ، بما في ذلك أمور مثل خفر السواحل وحرس الحدود. نظرة على العمل مع الحلفاء ، العربية أو غيرها ، لتجديد الأرض والبحر والجو الأصول. نقترح رمي بقدر ما تستطيع. تحديد الهدف بأنه لديها أحدث المعدات المتاحة. العمل مع القوات المسلحة مثل مصر للتدريب وهلم جرا. إذا كانت الأموال محدودة في نظرة في بداية الإيجار ، تقديم او قرض صريح. يجب تأمين الدولة في أقرب وقت ممكن.

كلفت مؤسسة تابعة للأمم المتحدة التي تتولى الثقة والضمانات لهم نيابة عن الشعب الليبي الذين ينتمون إلى أصول النظام السابق الاستيلاء على التي كلفت من قبل مجلس الأمن للأمم المتحدة وأفرج عنه إلى الحكومة الليبية في نقطة متفق عليها بصورة متبادلة. يجب أن تشارك مع هذه الأصول التي حددها مجلس الأمن الدولي ، أن تلك الموجودات داخل ليبيا التي تملك غير مؤكد بسبب طبيعة النظام والفصل بين القليل واضحة أو قانونية من الممتلكات الشخصية وممتلكات الدولة. ومن المقترح هو أنه مع أصول مثل وظيفة مطلوبة لدولة ليبيا في المرحلة الانتقالية ، تكون برئاسة وصيا للامم المتحدة تعيين من هو المسؤول عن توفير الأموال للسماح للالأصول إلى وظيفة والمستفيد من الأرباح أو غيرها من الدخل. وينبغي أن تجرى العام للتشغيل الأصول من قبل موظفين مؤهلين بشكل صحيح وإدارة مسؤولة أمام إحدى لجان الانتقالية المبينة أدناه. قد الأصول الوقوع في هذه الفئة تشمل ، في جملة أمور ، البنية التحتية للطيران المدني والمعدات ، بما في ذلك الطائرات ، والاتصالات ، بما في ذلك التلفزيون. وينبغي توفير التمويل اللازم لوالمشتريات إصلاح ، والعمليات وتجديد الثقة يمكن من خلال الامم المتحدة.

يمكن حل الأصول ذات الطابع التجاري أو المصادرة أو خاصة بعد أن ملكيتها علقت حتى ملكيتها الصحيح ينبغي أن توضع في يد الثقة للامم المتحدة.

وبصفة عامة ، من أجل تبسيط ، فإنه يشير إلى أن الدخل من الأصول التي تحتفظ بها ثقة الامم المتحدة المقرر تحويلها إلى الثقة.

وينبغي لعملية من الحكومة والمشتريات والبناء وتجديد البنية التحتية ، ومثل أن يكون على أساس المحاسبة العامة شرط من الصندوق والتي يتم صرفها من الثقة للامم المتحدة. وينبغي تناول مسألة المصرفية والوسطى وخلاف ذلك ، وعلى العديد من القطاعات الأخرى ليست مرتبطة بالتقدم المحرز في عملية الانتقال من الآليات التي قررها المجلس الانتقالي.

احتياطيات النفط والغاز : التراث الشعب الليبي

ويقترح أن الشعب الليبي النظر في عرض احتياطيات النفط والغاز في ليبيا على انها تنتمي الى شعب ليبيا وإما من بداية أو في نقطة حل ثقة الامم المتحدة للنفط والغاز توضع في الصندوق الوطني الليبي . لا أشير إلى أن عمليات الحفر والاستغلال وإنتاج النفط والغاز في أن يكون أي شيء آخر من ناحية تجارية ، على الرغم من هذا هو تماما في تقدير الشعب الليبي أنفسهم.

مبدأ يشير الى الصندوق الوطني لاحتياطات النفط والغاز لإزالة هذه من تقلبات التغييرات الإدارة في ليبيا ، والتغيرات السياسة التعسفية واغتصاب السيادة الليبية في محاولة للوصول أو التأثير على فرص الوصول إلى هذه السلع الأكثر قيمة . ويقترح أن هذا النهج لا يلقي أي ضوء في الأيديولوجية أو السياسية ، بل أكثر من واحدة من الحفاظ على أصول الناس في جميع الأوقات. الحالة الخاصة لهذا النهج نحو احتياطيات النفط والغاز غير مقنعة لعدد من الأسباب. وبعضها خاص ليبيا وغيرها لعامة. بقدر ما تشعر بالقلق ليبيا ، ليبيا لم يكن لها سوق متطورة والاقتصاد التجاري. التوجه إلى دولة ديمقراطية حديثة الولادة ، أو أي تركيبة سياسية أخرى في الأسواق العالمية لهذه السلع هو طلب المزيد من المهارات بدلا أن نتوقع. على المستوى العام ، والإجهاد العالمي من النفط الكبيرة والشركات الغاز في السعي لخفض احتياطي من أي وقت مضى ليست مكانا ليبيا الناشئة حديثا على استعداد أن تضع نفسها. في بجرة قلم ، ليبيا يزيل نفسه من الإفراط في لعب اللعبة الجيوسياسية والاستراتيجية من قبل الدول والشركات الجياع على نحو متزايد لاحتياطيات النفط والغاز.

في تقييم هذا خيارا ، يجب أن ليبيا تنظر في التشاور مع الحكومة النرويجية. في مرور ، وليست ذات صلة خاصة لمناقشة الحاضر ، قد المجلس الانتقالي من أقرب فرصة استكشاف اقامة علاقات خاصة مع النرويج على الحكومة على أساس الحكومة. إذا كان يعتقد هذا الغريب ، ويكفي أن نشير إلى العوامل الديموغرافية مشابهة للبلدين.

وسائل الترفيه للشعب الليبي

خارطة الطريق للانتقال إلى دولة فاعلةقد مخطط تقريبي جدا من النقاط التي تمر بمرحلة انتقالية تشملفي غضون 24 ساعة إنشاء مجموعات العمل — انظر الفقرة في الصفحة التاليةمجموعات التخطيط مع وضع كل منطقة معينة وتحديد المهام والجدول الزمني لتنفيذ تلك المهمة. إعطاء أنفسكم 3 أسابيع لإتمام هذه الخطة الحالية لعملية الشخص المسؤول في ساعات 48 الانتقالية جان مجلس في وقت لاحق يجب أن يكون والمجالس المنتخبة اللازمة لأداء العمل. انظر الصفحة التالية للحصول على تفاصيل.

في الوقت الذي أصبح فيه رئيس المخلوع الحالي شاغل دولة أن تعلن دولة وحدوية

البنية التحتية والمسائل ذات الصلة — جعل كله الحالي

تأسيس الأمم المتحدة الوصاية على الأصول المجمدة وما شابه ذلك

الدستور — استفتاء أو تصويت

تأسيس أحزاب سياسية

الانتخابات

تقديم خطة للأمم المتحدة جدولا زمنيا للافراج الثقة الفصل الأصول إلى الحكومة الليبية

تشكيل حكومة والحصول على اعتراف واسع النطاق العالمي

نقل الأصول وإغلاق صاية الأمم المتحدة

اعلان حالة ليبيا أن تكون مفتوحة لرجال الأعمال

تحديد المهام المطلوبة لمعالجة القضايا والاحتياجات المرتبطة الانتقالية وتعيين الهيئات إلى الخارج وتنفيذها

هنا يتم تعريف كل نقطة التحول مع المهام الضرورية لتحقيق ذلك نقطة التحول

تجمع الأمة حول : فريق ليبيا — أمة واحدة ، هدف واحد

تصميم الملصقات والشعارات والملصقات والمسابقات إدامة هذا النشاط في جميع مراحل العملية الانتقالية. هذا تحقيق وحدة الهدف وأيضا بناء الدولة. والمسيرات الأطفال والكبار ، وكرنفالات. تأكد من أن استمرار هذه طوال عملية الانتقال. لا علم مع هذا واحد.

في إعلان الدولة ، تأكد من وضع ليبيا على الخريطة. وبدلا من أن تكون الفخم لرئيس الدولة والملوك والملكات تفعل ذلك من أجل الشعب. كل نوع من انواع الرياضة. مباريات ودية غير تنافسية. الحفلات الموسيقية الكبيرة الموسيقى الإقليمية. اسبوع طويلة. قبيلة تحتفل اعتزازهم والفردية. دعوة العالم. نظرة على كيفية جنوب أفريقيا لم كأس العالم ولكن لا تنفق على البنية التحتية. دعوة المناطق أفضل المهندسين المعماريين لتصميم الأجنحة ، والخيام ، ولكن ضرب هياكل مؤقتة. تبدو جيدة لا يكلف جيدة. ولكن ليست رخيصة سواء. تبدأ هذه المرحلة المبكرة. سيجعل من مهام أخرى تبدو أسهل بكثير.

إنشاء مجموعات العمل من أجل تدبير المنزل الأساسية والأمن

الجزء الأول من العملية الامنية : لا أحد مؤيدي القذافي الذي لم التحق بصفوف الخاص يجب أن تبقى. إما أنهم معكم ، أو هناك من الباب. أي حجة.

واضاف “اننا بحاجة لكم للمساعدة في بناء أمتنا. لا نريد أن نساعد؟ ترك بعد ذلك ، انتقل للتو. ”

أوه ، وتأمين حدود الخاص بك ، لا تريد أي من الأفراد الضالة تتربص حول إنشاء الفوضى. لقد كان لديك ما يكفي من ذلك.

الجزء الثاني من عملية أمنية : إذا لم تكن شرطي ، سجلت على هذا النحو ، لا تحتاج بندقية. لذا جمع لهم. كل شيء. إنشاء تفريغ الأسلحة. وضع أصل الكلمة. دينار واحد للكيلوغرام الواحد أو مهما كان الثمن الذي تريد دفعه. الذهاب من الباب إلى الباب. تفجير مقالب. استخدام الممارسات الآمنة. إنشاء صناعة الصلب طفيفة لإعادة تدوير الأسلحة.

لا يوجد أي سبب أن ليبيا لا ينبغي أن يكون أسلحة كافية لحماية نفسها. ما لا نريده هو ، أن الحجج الخروج ، أن تحصل سيئة. تعرف ما أقصد؟

المهمة التالية ، في الساحة من كل بلدة ومدينة للأمة ، وتصميم أفضل نصب تستطيع ، وأنه لا يوجد مكان مع أسماء جميع النساء والأطفال والرجال الذين سقطوا كجزء من سبب لخلق دولة جديدة.

وينبغي للمهام مجموعات العمل هي تلك التي تبدأ غدا وحلها عند الانتهاء. وقد شخص من المجلس الوطني الانتقالي إجراء مكالمة لفريق من المنسقين الوطنيين والمنسقين الإقليميين ، والحق على طول الطريق وصولا الى حي المنسقين.

الانتقال إلى المجالس واللجان المهمة الديمقراطية

مباشرة تحت الانتقالية المجلس اللجان التالية عين. هذه ليست قائمة شاملة. فقط لتحصل على التفكير في الاتجاه الصحيح.

الشباب الممثل المجلس مع المجالس الفرعية لتقديم المشورة على طول الطريق وصولا الى الأحياء

المجلس الإداري

إيمانية ومجلس الخدمات المالية

مجلس الشؤون الخارجية

مجلس الشؤون الداخلية

الشؤون الدستورية ومجلس الدولة

الديمقراطية والحكومة التمثيلية للمجلس ليبيا

تشكيل الأحزاب السياسية على مستوى القاعدة المجلس

الشرطة الجنائية وقانون مجلس

المجلس الشرعي

المجلس المخصص لخدمات الطوارئ والاستجابة للكوارث

والمجالس تفريق المهام في كتل ذات مغزى العمل تعيين لجان للعمل لهم.

التحضير لاقامة دولة فلسطينية ، والديمقراطية والحرية

العالم معكم.

حظا سعيدا



Filed under: Culture, , , , , ,

Egypt, Libya and Tunisia: Working Together to Assure Democracy


Why Should You Read This?

Up till now, the southern coast of the Mediterranean has been solely populated by two small embattled democracies. In the not too distant future the political face of the eastern end of the coast will change out of recognition.

First, comment about the map. In compiling the map, I have deliberately avoided providing any colour to it. Colour on maps generally tends to be associated with political orientations. Two of the countries, Egypt and Tunisia, have barely begun to address the present, so recent is the downfall of their respective dictators, and a third, Libya, has not yet entered the present. With the will of the people of Libya, and a police force action to enforce the United Nations Security Council -mandated No Fly Zone, the forces weighed against Colonel Gaddafi are better balanced than they were just three days ago. While the prospect of success is by no means a foregone conclusion, the odds of its success are considerably greatened, no doubt, regrettably, attended by further loss of life and destruction to property, undoubtedly caused by the forces of Colonel Gaddafi and those implementing the No Fly Zone.

Let each of the three nations project their own colour onto the map. Besides, the largely white of the map is indicative of the clean sheet of paper situation that each country finds itself in, as it begins to build a fully realized democratic state, this being especially so of Libya.

In choosing this moment to compile and publish this map, a strong moral uplift is provided to the people of the country at the centre of the map, so terribly embattled in an effort to unseat their dictator, the achievement of which, will swing open wide open the door to their future.

In conceiving of this article and its attendant map, I had one overriding thought, which we will presently explore. Before we can do so, there are some other considerations to be made.

Being Good Neighbours

Almost certainly, it is too early to consider what the political and diplomatic impact on the region, and on the world beyond, will be, of the presences of the three states emerging as robust democracies with substantial and growing economies.

One overriding factor weighed with me, perhaps prematurely, to attempt the article. This factor becomes immediately apparent when you give the three states, Libya, Tunisia and Egypt, a tripartite relationship as I will attempt to do in a moment.

Whatever, as individual states, Egypt, Libya and Tunisia, choose as their future foreign policy, and their relationship with other nations in the region and elsewhere, there is one obvious set of policies which are going to change beyond recognition the three countries. The bilateral policy changes for each country towards neighbours will be substantial. They pale, however, beside the potential impact of trilateral policies that the three nations could adopt toward each other and adopt jointly.

The scenario of a trilateralism has huge potential impact on the region, and particularly for each of the three individual states. It is entirely worthwhile putting aside other matters, to consider solely the potential of this for each of the states.

In the case of Egypt and Tunisia, each, up to a matter of a few weeks ago, had, as its head of state, a dictator who had a political posture which allowed for full development of a political and policy stance and engagement with its neighbours.

In the case of Egypt, this had a profound effect upon the region, whether seen as stabilizer or not; namely its relationship with Israel. Both countries exhibited, and maintained, a fairly friendly relationship with most countries in the region, at least in recent times. Both countries enjoyed good relations with Western counties, in particular, Egypt’s relationship with the United States.

I have chosen, for the purpose of this article, to put aside questions of what these relationships might be in the near future, for the more immediate one of potential tripartite arrangements between the three.

It would not be unfair to note that these questions of relations with other states is not insubstantial, particularly where Egypt’s future relationship with the United States and Israel is concerned.

Just as the now ex-presidents of Tunisia and Egypt were willing, and able, to seek and maintain good relations with neighbours, the still present head of state of Libya, recent disavowals of that fact by him notwithstanding, was not. In fact, the contrary has been true. Not only was the head of the state of Libya unable, and certainly unwilling, to attempt to maintain anything like normal relations with his neighbours, he has been regarded by the West as being something of a pariah for most of his 41 years in office, and, indeed, at certain points during its length, he enjoyed the dubious distinction of being regarded as a terrorist head of state.

Nor is all this simply true, but the society he founded in the wake of the deposing of the king and which he has continued to maintain, is one of a closed society. For more than 40 years, Libya has been not much more than a large hole on the floor of the region’s geopolitical map. This has severely hampered the development of both the country of Libya, and the region, in a number of significant ways.

I am going to put these aside except for one which bears quite a great deal on our present discussion. This huge hole in the Earth’s surface, so to speak, between the countries of Egypt and Tunisia, forced Tunisia to look towards its neighbors, since something of a vacuum existed to its East, on the northern coast of Africa. This aspect is quite without the scope of the present article. That position has quite a lot to do with how that situation is about to change substantially.

Democratic Compared to Whom?

In considering what relations Egypt, Libya and Tunisia might have, if they are each of them to become fully fledged democracies, I am reminded of the positions the countries Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia enjoyed at the dissolution of Communism.

Among a number of similarities is the contiguous nature of the three fairly small states, one of which had been subject to extensive colonization by Russia which maintained a polity of relocating large numbers of Russian citizens into Estonia, which then become essentially an occupied country. I mention this only to say that Estonia was brutalized, as Libya has been, albeit in a rather different manner. Comparisons should not be stretched too far, for, whereas Libya, Tunisia and Egypt share a common language, the three Baltic states do not.

All of this notwithstanding, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania have a lot offer their Southern Mediterranean brethren as to the trials and setbacks encountered by any state seeking to transition from subjugation to full democracy. All three of the Middle Eastern countries could, when the time comes, do worse than look for advise and support to any of the three ex-Communist controlled states. By any measure, they have achieved full democracy, as measured against their Western European neighbours, and rather well ahead of some of the other ex-Communist controlled countries to their East.

Strengthening Ties

Having weighed at some length the considerations which have led us to the present point of discussion, it is a matter of fairly short order to identity the possibilities that lie ahead for the two states newly unleashed from despotic control, and the other within spitting distance of doing so.

If we start with Tunisia, her established relationships with the countries to her West are unlikely to be affected should Tunisia choose, when conditions prevail, to consider a range of options now potentially available to her which previously were not: the emergence of Libya as a fledgling democracy.

To travel east along the coast of the southern Mediterranean, we have to skip over the hole, which, still to some measure, constitutes Libya, to Egypt, where we find that the question of an extensive border with Libya is itself compelling reason to be ready when the time comes to evaluate a range of possibilities.

Putting aside, for ease of discussion the nature and extent of the bilateral relations which Libya might form with each of the individual countries lying to either side of her on the coast of the Southern Mediterranean, it is the range of trilateral arrangements that are of particular interest. This lies not least in the fact that the three countries considered together constitute a democratic and economic force to be reckoned with in the not too unforeseeable future.

We have to acknowledge that the grounds for the suppositions being made for the basis of this article are shaky indeed. Despite this, t not make them means that we are less prepared than we might be had we not. And no harm comes from having done so.

Realizing Ambitions, Stating Aims

Stepping aside for a moment, let’s note the basis on which we are supporting the case for each of the nations being considered as emergent democracies with the will of the people being clearly expressed in the acts and calls being made from the streets and squares.

In the case of both Tunisia and Egypt, there was opportunity for the youth in each country who, if they did not lead each country to the position each presently occupies, certainly gave, and continues to give, its political direction. Both countries, in the hours and days leading up to the overthrow of the respective head of state, expressed a clear and unequivocal will and a very similar set of demands: those of full and fair elections, a secular democracy, with a well constituted representational government. The demands were, and are still being, made repeatedly and loudly, and echoed in countless twitters which, in the case of Egypt, the government vainly sought to suppress.

Libya, rather to everyone’s surprise, after a few days of demonstrations, starting February 17, 2011, saw these demonstrations transformed into an uprising which swept across the country, as a lightly armed popular insurgency, largely unopposed by the regime, got to within reasonable distance of Tripoli, having gathered up town after town on the way.

A completely unintended consequence of this has been that the calls and demands for full democracy were suspended, as the youth got caught up with their brethren in low grade insurgency, which the government in Tripoli has resorted to attempting to quash with greater and greater levels of violence, each level being more obscene than the last.

As of this writing, therefore, it remains a matter of faith that Libya, having finally decapitated the head of state, and dismembered the body of the regime, will unequivocally embark, with the greatest vigour, on the creating and makings of a sound and fully fledged democracy.

Therefore, taking this act of faith at face value, it does the parties involved no harm, not the least that of Libya, to consider what, were the three countries to become democracies of even the most basic sort, the possibilities, when considering trilateralism, for each country might be.

Having spent so much time on the considerations that got us here, the possibilities can be addressed fairly quickly, which is as well, since they remain somewhat distant, and with due acknowledgement of the fact that the foundation upon which all of this is erected, is not yet in place.

Therefore, assuming the emergence of democracies of largely similar aims and outlook, and it is difficult to posit anything else, given the stated aims of the youth in each of the countries, and given that in the case of Libya, this is not thwarted by other forces at play with the departure of the present head of state, the possibilities might be outlined as follows.

Working Together, Mutual Gains

The effect of having given due consideration to the aforegoing is that we are now well placed to narrow the focus on what I have chosen to put at the heart of this article: trilateralism for democratic Egypt, Libya and Tunisia.

It is not necessary to try to suggest all the possible forms that trilateralism for Tunisia, Egypt and Libya might take. It is sufficient to suggest a few examples for other possibilities to occur to alert readers.

So, a short list might include:

A military pact

An agreement on joint arms procurement and agreement on shared use of resources and facilities

A harmonization of military procedures and protocols

A jointly developed arms industry

A joint declaration to the region as the nature and intentions of such a military force toward its neighbours as to when and how it would be used

A joint expression of shared aims on policy and attitude to issues of concern to the world community

A harmonization between the three countries as to the shared concerns of border control, cross border movements of money, police action, extradition of criminals, passport control, and so on

Diplomatic measures with the regional and international bodies and joint agreement on international initiatives

A foundational vision of an economic union with all the various aspects that this would entail

Educational, social, and religious matters addressed by the formation of inter-government and nongovernment agencies

The agreement of sound fiscal and monetary policies to allow the three countries to better weather the vagaries to which they would be subject during economic downturns

Emergency response to member governments, and to governments elsewhere who require help

The sharing and harmonization of labour laws in recognition of the large numbers of inter-country labour movements

 

Basic Questions Answered

It might be wondered why military matters are at the head of the list. The short answer is that the security of a state of its borders, of its citizenry and of its ability to repel aggressors, is one of the first duties of a state. Furthermore, a democratic state, in order to secure its existence and ability to exist among its neighbours peacefully, so that its daily business can be continued unhampered, has, as first order of business, to ensure that it has the arms and means to do so. Should there be any doubt as to this, I point to the examples of Switzerland and Sweden in Europe, and of India in the East.

It should not require pointing out to my present audience that dictators frequently require the military support of others, in order to secure their continuance as head of state, and this military support is most visible in the supply of arms.

While it may be regrettable to countenance military matters, they are a reality. Means by which a country protects itself are matters of vital importance. For any of you still skeptical on this point, allow me to direct your attention to recent events in Egypt. When the Egyptian state withdrew the police from the streets, the citizenry, by force of necessity, elected to maintain neighborhood watch committees.

The democratic states of Egypt, Libya and Tunisia are in no less a position that you in your neighborhood, with the vital distinction that the protection of the country must be by itself for itself.

You do not want, as a state, to have anyone tell you what to do, far less than by means of force.

Whatever efforts have historically been made to bring together states in the region, the compelling nature of the advantages of trilateralism make their adoption inevitable, provided, of course, that the dialogue is being conducted by democratic states. To what extent and when are likely matters for both history and further discussion.

Filed under: Culture, , , , , ,

Gaddafi War Crimes; His Propaganda, Our Media; Dictator Games, Repeat


Supplement dated Thursday March 17, 2011 to Remarks dated Wednesday March 16, 2011 Contained Below

The Arabic is below the English

واللغة العربية هي اللغة الإنجليزية أدناه

Since the Remarks dated March 16, 2011 were posted to this web site, two events and three observations are worth recording.

On Thursday March 17, 2011, a resolution was passed by the United Nations Security Council authorizing a No Fly Zone over Libya. A number of observers commented on the extraordinary strength of the language it contained aimed at protection civilians.

During the course of Thursday March 17, 2011, the United Nations issued a statement strongly condemning the use of excessive and lethal force against its citizens by the government of Bahrain.

War Crimes

The first observation to make is that the mention of the characterization of the violent acts perpetrated by the forces of the regimes in Libya and Bahrain as war crimes needs to broaden into a public discussion so that the serious discussion will serve to deter and restrain the governments in question from such action and ensure that governments which feel threatened by the potential for uprisings are aware that if they engage in such acts are aware of the consequences. Furthermore, if indeed there is grounds for such acts as being construed as war crimes, then the language of the previous resolution passed by the Security Council freezing Libyan assets and addressing concerns of the perpetration of crimes against humanity needs to be amended.

Gaddafi Uses Our Media for His Propaganda

Secondly, the editors of the worlds press need to educate themselves and their journalists both on the regretful situation whereby their media serve as unwitting proxy agents for Colonel Gaddafi’s propaganda campaign and on agreeing terms with which to describe the actions and individuals involved in the uprisings.

Dictator Games, the Repeat

Thirdly, governments and associated agencies need to prepare now on how they will act and speak the next time round. It should now be abundantly clear that the uprisings are going to continue as indeed they are already doing and that repressive regimes, based on the track record established so far for Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and now Bahrain, indicates that, when faced with legitimate demands made by overwhelming peaceful means, the regimes go through a now predictable cycle of acts and behaviours, leading to increasing levels of force, increasingly dreadful acts of violence, resulting in utterly avoidable carnage, injuries and human misery, and damage to property.

What is more, it is imperative that those who have played a leading part in addressing and acting on the uprisings and their outcomes that we have so far witnessed need with all possible speed to come up with strategies and approaches which effectively and realistically address the events as they unfold. There are 22 countries in the Middle East and North African region. Few of them are democracies. The room for more and immediate strife and mayhem is great.

There is no reason next time round we should be rendered hapless, or helpless, you choose which term, inarticulate and not prepared to act. At this point with dictator games we have seen it all before.  Let’s play it our way, not theirs.

In the meantime, with the approach of Friday of each week, we shall be listening closely to announcements from Tripoli.

Middle East Threatens to Descend Into Chaos: Why the UN Needs to Act Now

In the Remarks below, no content has been changed but the text has been heavily revised.

Wednesday March 16, 2011

Introduction

The indications at this moment are that Middle East and the North African region is potentially at the brink of a descent into chaos at a rate which, if it continues, should cause alarm amid acts of utter barbarity and unimaginable ferocity being committed by the hour at the present time by forces of the regimes of Libya and Bahrain, which are indiscriminately perpetrated against their own people.

It seems  prudent to call for the United Nations and the International Community to investigate and act without delay in a manner which brings these savageries to an immediate halt. To not act in a timely manner may result in a humanitarian crisis, and perhaps worse, occurring in the region.

The violence is not being committed by any groups or peoples. The violence is being committed by governments. The ferocity and barbarity of the violent acts by the Bahraini government assisted by forces of the governments of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates is not being opposed or resisted by the people of Bahrain against whom it is directed.

A situation, which began in a small village in Tunisia, which spread to Yemen, Egypt, Libya and Bahrain, and which threatens to extend to other countries in the region, is now descending into acts of horrendous violence perpetrated at ferocious speed.

These acts are being perpetrated by the forces of repressive regimes against their own peaceful populations.

The crisis is increasing in severity because the increasingly savage acts employed by the forces of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi to quell an uprising in Libya have not been acted against with a view to bringing them to an immediate halt.

World leaders, humanitarian organizations, the United Nations and other relevant agencies have, as yet, not recognized the ferocity and speed with which regimes facing popular uprisings will act to crush by increasingly horrendous means the overwhelmingly peaceful expressions of calls for democracy and representative government by means of free and fair elections.

The lack of action to halt the increasingly dreadful means being employed by Gaddafi’s security forces, which include the use of foreign mercenaries against his own civilian population to eliminate dissent, has given license to other regimes in the region who feel under threat to use tactics and means which exceed even the frightfulness of those employed by Gaddafi.

Section 1 How Gaddafi Deflects Attention From His Committing and Concealing His Crimes

The use of such means, judged by international standards, have already been identified as constituting crimes against humanity by the International Community, and, as such, subject to prosecution by the International Court of Justice at the Hague. This identification is enshrined in UN Resolution 1960, but the extend and depths of them have been cloaked and deliberating hidden by, among others:

Co-opting, confinement, harassment, intimidation and torture of international media attempting to report the situation on the ground

Co-opting and deliberate manipulation and misleading of international media, in a concerted effort to employed lies, deceptions and denials clearly at odd with readily visible reality and evidence based publicly witnessed accounts

Use of media, internet and communications blackouts, extending to the use of power blackouts and water supply shutoff

Use of state propaganda to manipulate, mislead, withhold information, and lie to their own populations, and the use of regime officials outside the country to engage in a similar activity towards officials of other countries in which they are resident

Use of propaganda strategies which have, among other effects, callously played upon Western fears,

Threats of various kinds directed at the international community, including the destruction of oil facilities, the release of chemical weapons, among others

The willful denial in the face of overwhelming evidence of the use of brutal and illegal force

Engaging in an attempt to intimidate and falsely discredit individual international leaders and the deliberate playing off of one individual international leader against another

Section 2 Failures to Address What is Happening on the Ground

International leaders and officials have seriously compromised their approach to the crisis on at least the following counts:

They have failed to offer leadership and speak in a unified voice against the wrongs being perpetrated by regimes in the region against peaceful protests.

They have so far failed to speak out publicly to clearly acknowledge the legitimacy of, and offer support to, the calls for democracy and fair and free elections made by unarmed, peaceful, popular uprisings in Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen and Lybia, and Bahrain, which now threaten to engulf many of the 22 countries of the region.

They have so far failed publicly to acknowledge that the popular uprisings, in the face of extraordinary means of violence being used against them, are nonviolent and resolutely peaceful, are completely unarmed, resorting only when under mortal attack to the barest means of defense, and that these are nonpartisan, are nonsectarian, nonreligious, and non ideological.

Furthermore, the uprisings espouse ideas and values identical to those upheld by most democracies and pose no threat to any government anywhere, with the notable exception of their own. In the face of previous doubt about, and ignorance of, the nature of the aims of the uprisings, living proof of the nature of the aims of the uprisings now exists in post-Mubarak Egypt, if any were needed.

They have been utterly negligent in making any effort to gain knowledge of the nature and message of protestors and sabotaged their own ability to recognize the universal and humane nature of the uprisings. Because of this failure, they have allowed officials and representatives inside their own countries to deliberately misrepresent the nature of the uprisings in an effort to raise and play upon fears associated with ethnic, religious and extremist stereotypes by deliberately and cynically misrepresenting the uprisings in order to make political gains.

They have placed their security and economic interests in the region far ahead of concerns for humaneness and adherence to the values which they uphold in their own countries and have repeatedly said over decades that they support in the region and elsewhere in the world, and have hedged their bets on the outcomes of the uprisings in order to secure oil and other economic interests in individual counties and the region as a whole.

In the face of the popular uprisings, they have expressed support for the regimes that the uprisings were opposing, up to the point when the regimes head was deposed.

On the one hand they have denied the legitimacy of, undermined the integrity of, directly placed in jeopardy the lives of ordinary men, women and children, involved in the uprisings or not, living in, and threatened the security of, the country where the uprising is taking place by publicly discussing and threatening to intervene militarily despite clear calls by voices within the uprisings that such interventions were neither sought nor welcome, and other the hand have been unable, to date, to marshal and put into effect no fly zones in a timely manner such that its speedy and effective introduction would have a seriously chilling effect upon the most flagrant  means of violence being visited upon the population by the entrenched government.

Calls for those perpetrating acts constituting crimes against humanity subject to prosecution by the International Court of Justice were put into place with no means of their being enforced thereby leading to the greater levels of violence against populations on the principle that one might as well be hung for a sheep as for a lamb.

Section 3 A Partial List of Crimes

It is not possible at this juncture to list the worst excesses of violence, and heinous crimes being presently committed by security forces and others on behalf of the regimes involved for some have not yet been validated for the reasons given earlier. The regimes so far involved, and the expectation should be that the number of regimes employing these practices will soon rapidly proliferate, are those of Libya, with the assistance of outside governments, the identities of which have not been positively identified, but are alleged to include Algeria and Syria, together with reports that mercenaries are still being flown into Tripoli and other airstrips in Libya and undeclared movements of military transports to and from Bulgaria, and Bahrain, with the publicly declared and widely witnessed assistance of forces from the Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

A partial and certainly incomplete list of verified or partially verified means of extraordinary violence and repression used in Libya and Bahrain against the unarmed populace includes:

Use of helicopters and military aircraft to fire on and bomb civilians

Use of tanks, heavy arms such as mortars, anti-tank guns, and rocket propelled grenades

Use snipers from rooftops and other places

Forced entry into places of worship during prayer

Chemically debilitating tear gas style canisters whose effects would appear to include rotting of flesh where chemicals have made contact with the skin and the inducement of epileptic fevers from exposure to the fumes.

Use of live ammunition at close and blank range

The use of ambulances as armoured vehicles against unarmed civilians

Holding of hostages of the family members of citizenry resident overseas and the parading of the hostages on state television

The gathering up of migrant workers and inducing them by means of payments or mortal threats to take part in acts of violence against civilians

The entry into hospitals and removal of the injured and of dead bodies

The intimidation of doctors and medical personnel into treating government forces and the displacement of critically injured civilians to free up medical facilities for their care

The intimidation of doctors and medical personnel at the entry to hospitals including the use of fire arms held at point blank range and denial of entry to attend to sick and injured persons

The dismembering of military personnel who refuse to take arms against their fellow countrymen along with the charring by some means of their dead bodies

The use of racial and religious epithets against religious groups to incite divisions carried out, in the case of Bahrain, by soldiers of the neighboring countries dressed in Bahraini police uniforms

The wide spread killing of women, children and babies often as reprisals

The entry into homes of those suspected of having attended protests

The burial of victims in unmarked graves frequently under cover of darkness

Libyan state television has spoken on a number of occasions of “cleansing” town recaptured from opposition forces. Bahraini sources report of hearing the term used by the occupying forces. Until the evidence emerges, one cannot know what precisely has been carried out. With memories of the use of the term in Bosnia, the thought of what it might mean is chilling.

In addition, there are unverified reports coming out of Bahrain from credible witnesses of forms violence and crimes which exceed even the worst of those listed above.

Section 4 UN Needs to Act Not Simply Condemn

The UN and appropriate international bodies need to demand immediate unfettered access to the affected areas in order to verify for themselves the extent of the atrocities being committed

It may be pointed out that humanitarian organizations and human rights groups on the ground and outside the countries involved could do more to record, collect and disseminate evidence of the violence and crimes being perpetrated. This action is necessary because of widespread eye witness accounts of concealment, contamination and destruction of evidence.

The writer is not a citizen of any country in the region, has no connections to any group or organization, nor any religious affiliations.

Malcolm D B Munro

الملحق بتاريخ الخميس 17 مارس 2011 على تصريحات مؤرخة الأربعاء 16 مارس 2011 فيما يلي موجود

 

منذ ملاحظات مؤرخة 16 مارس، 2011 وقد وضعت لهذا الموقع، واثنين من الأحداث والملاحظات الثلاث هي تستحق التسجيل.

الخميس 17 آذار / مارس، 2011، صدر قرار من مجلس الأمن للأمم المتحدة يجيز لمنطقة حظر الطيران على ليبيا. وعلق عدد من المراقبين على قوة غير عادية لأنها تحتوي على اللغة التي تستهدف المدنيين الحماية.

خلال آذار / مارس الخميس 17، 2011، أصدرت الأمم المتحدة بيانا يدين بشدة استخدام القوة المفرطة والمميتة ضد مواطنيها من قبل حكومة البحرين

جرائم الحرب

والملاحظة الأولى لجعل هو أن الإشارة إلى توصيف أعمال العنف التي ترتكبها قوات من نظامي الحكم في ليبيا والبحرين وجرائم الحرب يحتاج الى توسيع في المناقشة العامة بحيث مناقشة جادة سيعمل على ردع وكبح جماح الحكومات في سؤال من مثل هذا العمل والتأكد من أن الحكومات التي تشعر بأنها مهددة من قبل المحتملة للثورات ندرك أنه إذا يخوضوا في مثل هذه الأعمال يدركون العواقب. وعلاوة على ذلك، اذا كان هناك أساس لمثل هذه الأعمال بأنها تفسر على أنها جرائم حرب، ثم لغة القرار السابق الذي أصدره مجلس الأمن تجميد الأصول الليبية ومعالجة الشواغل من ارتكاب جرائم ضد الانسانية ، بحاجة الى تعديل.

الخميس 17 آذار / مارس، 2011، صدر قرار من مجلس الأمن للأمم المتحدة يجيز لمنطقة حظر الطيران على ليبيا. وعلق عدد من المراقبين على قوة غير عادية لأنها تحتوي على اللغة التي تستهدف المدنيين الحماية.

خلال آذار / مارس الخميس 17، 2011، أصدرت الأمم المتحدة بيانا يدين بشدة استخدام القوة المفرطة والمميتة ضد مواطنيها من قبل حكومة البحرين.

القذافي يستخدم وسائل إعلامنا لدعايته

ثانيا ، إن محرري الصحافة في العالم بحاجة إلى تثقيف أنفسهم والصحافيين على حد سواء على الوضع المؤسف بموجبه وسائل الإعلام الخاصة بمثابة وكلاء وكيل غير مقصود لحملة الدعاية العقيد القذافي وعلى الموافقة على الشروط التي لوصف الأعمال والأفراد المتورطين في أعمال الشغب.

ألعاب الدكتاتور ، وكرر

ثالثا ، الحكومات والوكالات المرتبطة بها بحاجة إلى إعداد الآن على الكيفية التي ستعمل والتحدث في المرة القادمة. وينبغي أن يكون واضحا الآن تماما أن الانتفاضات سوف تستمر كما في الواقع يقومون به بالفعل ، وأن الأنظمة القمعية ، استنادا إلى سجل حافل حتى الآن لتونس ومصر وليبيا والبحرين والآن ، يشير إلى أنه عندما واجه مع المطالب المشروعة بواسطة الوسائل السلمية الساحقة ، الأنظمة الذهاب من خلال دورة يمكن التنبؤ به الآن من الأفعال والتصرفات ، مما يؤدي إلى زيادة مستويات القوة ، وأعمال العنف المروعة على نحو متزايد ، مما أدى إلى المذبحة التي يمكن تجنبها تماما ، والإصابات والبؤس البشري ، وأضرار في الممتلكات.

ما هو أكثر من ذلك ، لا بد من أن أولئك الذين لعبوا دورا رئيسيا في معالجة وبناء على نتائجها ، والانتفاضات التي لدينا حتى الآن شهدت الحاجة بكل السرعة الممكنة للتوصل إلى الاستراتيجيات والنهج الذي بفعالية ومعالجة واقعية للأحداث أثناء وقوعها. وهناك 22 بلدا في منطقة الشرق الأوسط وشمال أفريقيا. قليل منهم من الديمقراطيات. الغرفة لمزيد من الصراع والفوضى وعلى الفور أمر عظيم.

ليس هناك من سبب المرة القادمة يجب أن نكون المقدمة التعساء ، أو عاجز ، التي اخترت الأجل ، امفصلي وليس على استعداد للعمل. عند هذه النقطة مع ألعاب الدكتاتور لقد شهدنا ذلك من قبل جميع. هيا نلعب على طريقتنا ، وليس لهم.

في غضون ذلك ، مع اقتراب الجمعة من كل أسبوع ، وسنكون الاستماع عن كثب لاعلانات من طرابلس

 

 

الشرق الأوسط يهدد بالنزول الى الفوضى : لماذا لاحتياجات الأمم المتحدة لقانون الآن

في الملاحظات أدناه ، لم يحدث أي تغيير محتوى لكن تم تنقيح النص بشكل كبير.

الأربعاء 16 مارس 2011
مقدمة

المؤشرات في هذه اللحظة هي أن الشرق الأوسط ومنطقة شمال أفريقيا ويحتمل أن تكون على شفا الانزلاق الى الفوضى بمعدل التي ، إذا ما استمر ، وينبغي أن يسبب القلق وسط أعمال بربرية وحشية لا يمكن تصورها المطلق التي ترتكبها في ساعة في الوقت الحاضر من قبل القوات الأنظمة من ليبيا والبحرين ، والتي ترتكب دون تمييز ضد شعبهم.

يبدو من الحكمة في الدعوة إلى الأمم المتحدة والمجتمع الدولي للتحقيق والتصرف دون إبطاء وبطريقة الذي يجمع هذه الوحشية إلى الوقف الفوري. عدم التصرف في الوقت المناسب قد يؤدي إلى أزمة إنسانية ، وربما ما هو أسوأ ، والتي تحدث في المنطقة.

لم يكن العنف التي ترتكبها جماعات أو أي الشعوب. يجري ارتكابها أعمال العنف من قبل الحكومات. وحشية وهمجية من أعمال عنف من قبل الحكومة البحرينية بمساعدة قوات من حكومتي المملكة العربية السعودية ودولة الامارات العربية المتحدة هي عدم معارضة أو مقاومة من قبل شعب البحرين ضد الذين يتم توجيه.

الحالة ، التي بدأت في قرية صغيرة في تونس ، والتي امتدت الى واليمن وليبيا ومصر والبحرين ، والذي يهدد تمتد إلى بلدان أخرى في المنطقة ، وينحدر الآن إلى أعمال العنف المروعة التي ارتكبت في سرعة شرسة.

ترتكب هذه الأفعال من قبل قوات من الأنظمة القمعية ضد السكان كل منهم السلمي.

الأزمة هو زيادة في شدة لأنه لم يتم الأفعال الوحشية المتزايدة التي تستخدمها قوات العقيد معمر القذافي لقمع انتفاضة في ليبيا ضد تصرف بغية تقديمهم إلى الوقف الفوري.

زعماء العالم والمنظمات الإنسانية والأمم المتحدة والوكالات الأخرى ذات الصلة لديك ، حتى الآن ، لم يتم التعرف على ضراوة وسرعة مع الأنظمة التي تواجه الانتفاضات الشعبية سوف تعمل على سحق من قبل المروعة على نحو متزايد في وسائل التعبير السلمي ساحقة من المكالمات من أجل الديمقراطية والحكومة التمثيلية التي طريق انتخابات حرة ونزيهة.

وعدم اتخاذ إجراءات لوقف المروعة على نحو متزايد الوسائل التي يجري استخدامها من قبل قوات الأمن القذافي ، والتي تشمل استخدام المرتزقة الأجانب ضد السكان له المدنيين للقضاء على المعارضة ، أعطت رخصة لأنظمة أخرى في المنطقة الذين يشعرون تحت التهديد باستخدام تكتيكات و الوسائل التي تتجاوز حتى رعب من تلك المستخدمة من قبل القذافي.

 

القسم 1 كيف القذافي ينحرف الاهتمام من صاحب ارتكاب وإخفاء جرائمه

وقد تم بالفعل استخدام هذه الوسائل ، يحكم حسب المعايير الدولية ، على النحو المحدد تشكل جرائم ضد الإنسانية من قبل المجتمع الدولي ، وكما تخضع ، مثل للمحاكمة من قبل محكمة العدل الدولية في لاهاي. مكرس هذا التحديد في قرار الأمم المتحدة 1960 ، ولكن تم توسيع ويرتدي معطفا طويلا أعماق منهم والتداول خفية ، وذلك من بين أمور أخرى :

اصطفاء ، والحبس ، والمضايقة والترهيب والتعذيب من وسائل الاعلام الدولية التي تحاول تقرير الحالة على أرض الواقع

شارك في اختيار والتلاعب والتضليل المتعمد من وسائل الإعلام الدولية ، في جهد منسق لعمل تكمن ، الخداع والإنكار بوضوح في حكاية واقع مرئية بسهولة والأدلة القائمة على حسابات شهدت علنا

استخدام الإنترنت ووسائل الإعلام وانقطاع التيار الكهربائي والاتصالات ، وتمتد إلى استخدام انقطاع الكهرباء والمياه منع تسرب العرض

استخدام الدعاية الدولة للتلاعب ، تضليل ، حجب المعلومات ، والكذب على شعوبها ، واستخدام مسؤولي النظام خارج البلاد لمزاولة نشاط مماثل نحو المسؤولين من البلدان الأخرى التي كانوا مقيمين

استخدام استراتيجيات الدعاية التي ، من بين الآثار الأخرى ، لعبت على مخاوف الغرب بقسوة ،

التهديدات الموجهة من أنواع مختلفة في المجتمع الدولي ، بما في ذلك تدمير المنشآت النفطية ، والإفراج عن الأسلحة الكيميائية ، من بين أمور أخرى

الحرمان المتعمد في مواجهة الأدلة الدامغة على استخدام القوة الوحشية وغير القانونية

الانخراط في محاولة لتخويف وتشويه سمعة القادة الدوليين زورا الفردية وتعمد اللعب خارج زعيم دولية واحدة ضد فرد آخر

 

القسم 2 القصور في معالجة ما هو يحدث على أرض الواقع

وقد أخلت زعماء العالم والمسؤولين بجدية نهجها للأزمة على التهم التالية على الأقل :

لقد فشلوا في تقديم القيادة والتحدث بصوت واحد ضد المظالم التي ترتكب من قبل الأنظمة في المنطقة ضد الاحتجاجات السلمية.

انها فشلت حتى الان في الحديث علنا ​​أن نعترف بوضوح شرعية ، وتقديم الدعم ل، وتدعو للديمقراطية وانتخابات حرة ونزيهة بواسطة العزل والانتفاضات وشعبية سلمية في كل من تونس اليمن ومصر وليبيا ، والبحرين ، التي تهدد الآن بأن تشمل العديد من البلدان ال 22 في المنطقة.

انها فشلت حتى الان علنا ​​أن نعترف بأن تستخدم الانتفاضات الشعبية ، في مواجهة وسائل غير عادية من العنف ضدهم ، واللاعنفية والسلمية بحزم ، والعزل تماما ، والاحتكام فقط عندما تتعرض للهجوم مميت على ادنى وسيلة للدفاع ، و أن هذه هي غير حزبية ، وغير طائفية ، غير دينية ، وغير أيديولوجية.

وعلاوة على ذلك ، والانتفاضات تبني الأفكار والقيم مماثلة لتلك التي تؤمن بها معظم الديمقراطيات وتشكل أي تهديد لأية حكومة في أي مكان ، مع استثناء ملحوظ خاصة بهم. في مواجهة شك السابقة حول ، والجهل ، وطبيعة أهداف الانتفاضات ، دليلا حيا على طبيعة أهداف الانتفاضات الآن موجود في مصر ما بعد مبارك ، أي إذا كانت هناك حاجة.

لقد كانت مهملة تماما في اتخاذ أي جهد لاكتساب المعرفة لطبيعة ورسالة من المتظاهرين وتخريب قدرتهم على التعرف على طبيعة عالمية وإنسانية من الانتفاضات. وبسبب هذا الفشل ، وقد سمح لهم مسؤولون وممثلون داخل بلدانهم من أجل تشويه متعمد لطبيعة الثورات في محاولة لرفع واللعب على المخاوف المرتبطة القوالب النمطية العرقية والدينية والمتطرفة التي تعمد تشويه بسخرية وانتفاضات من أجل تحقيق مكاسب سياسية.

وضعوا أمنها ومصالحها الاقتصادية في المنطقة متقدما بفارق كبير من اهتمامات إنسانية والتمسك بالقيم التي تتمسك في بلدانهم وقالوا مرارا وتكرارا على مدى العقود التي تدعمها في المنطقة وأماكن أخرى في العالم ، والتحوط لها من يراهن على نتائج انتفاضات من أجل تأمين النفط والمصالح الاقتصادية الأخرى في المقاطعات الفردية والمنطقة ككل.

في مواجهة الانتفاضات الشعبية ، وأعربوا عن تأييدهم لالأنظمة التي كانت معارضة الانتفاضات ، وتصل إلى نقطة عندما كان رئيس المخلوع الأنظمة.

من ناحية نفوا شرعية ، يقوض سلامة ، وضعت مباشرة في خطر حياة الناس العاديين من الرجال والنساء والأطفال ، والمشاركة في الانتفاضات أم لا ، الذين يعيشون في ، وهددت أمن ، البلد الذي يوجد فيه الانتفاضة التي تجري مناقشتها علنا ​​، وتهدد بالتدخل عسكريا على الرغم من دعوات واضحة من أصوات داخل الانتفاضات التي كانت تسعى هذه التدخلات لا ولا مرحبا ، وغيرها من جهة لم تتمكن ، حتى الآن ، إلى حشد ودخلت حيز التنفيذ في مناطق حظر الطيران الوقت المناسب من شأنه أن مثل هذه مقدمة بشكل سريع وفعال لها أثر سلبي على نحو خطير يزورها أكثر الوسائل صارخا للعنف على السكان من قبل الحكومة الراسخة.

وضعت يدعو إلى ارتكاب هذه الأفعال التي تشكل جرائم ضد الإنسانية تخضع للمحاكمة من قبل محكمة العدل الدولية في مكانه مع أي وسيلة لفرض وجودهم وبالتالي تؤدي إلى مستويات أعلى من العنف ضد السكان على مبدأ يمكن أن يكون كذلك واحدة معلقة ل أما بالنسبة للخروف خروف

 

 

الباب 3 قائمة جزئية من الجرائم

ليس من الممكن في هذه المرحلة إلى قائمة أسوأ تجاوزات العنف ، وترتكب الجرائم البشعة في الوقت الحاضر من قبل قوات الأمن وغيرهم نيابة عن الأنظمة المعنية للم يتم بعد التحقق من صحة بعض للأسباب المذكورة سابقا. الأنظمة المعنية حتى الآن ، وتوقع وينبغي أن عدد من الأنظمة التي تستخدم هذه الممارسات سوف تتكاثر بسرعة في وقت قريب ، هي تلك من ليبيا ، بمساعدة من الحكومات خارج ، والهويات التي لم يتم تحديدها بشكل إيجابي ، ولكن يزعم وتشمل الجزائر وسورية ، جنبا إلى جنب مع التقارير التي تفيد بأن المرتزقة لا تزال نقلهم جوا الى طرابلس ومهابط الطائرات الأخرى في ليبيا والحركات غير معلنة من وسائل النقل العسكرية من وإلى بلغاريا ، والبحرين ، مع علنا ​​وعلى نطاق واسع شهد بمساعدة قوات من المملكة العربية السعودية و دولة الإمارات العربية المتحدة.

قائمة جزئية وغير كاملة بالتأكيد وسائل التحقق أو التحقق منها جزئيا من العنف والقمع غير عادية تستخدم في ليبيا والبحرين ضد السكان العزل ما يلي :

استخدام طائرات هليكوبتر وطائرات حربية لإطلاق النار على المدنيين وقنبلة

استخدام الدبابات والاسلحة الثقيلة مثل مدافع الهاون والمدافع المضادة للدبابات ، وقذائف صاروخية الدفع

استخدام القناصة من فوق أسطح المنازل وأماكن أخرى

القسري دخول أماكن العبادة في الصلاة

المنهكة كيميائيا الغاز المسيل للدموع نمط آثارها على ما يبدو لتشمل من اللحم المتعفن فيها المواد الكيميائية جعلت تماس مع الجلد ، والتحريض على حميات الصرع من التعرض للأبخرة.

استخدام الذخيرة الحية من مسافة قريبة وفارغة

استخدام سيارات الاسعاف وعربات مدرعة ضد المدنيين العزل

احتجاز الرهائن من أفراد العائلة المقيمين في الخارج والمواطنين تتقاطر من الرهائن على شاشات التلفزيون

وتلملم من العمال المهاجرين وإغرائهم من خلال مدفوعات أو التهديدات القاتلة للمشاركة في أعمال العنف ضد المدنيين

دخول المستشفيات والتخلص من الجرحى وجثث الموتى

التخويف من الأطباء والعاملين في المجال الطبي في علاج القوات الحكومية وتشريد للمدنيين بجروح خطيرة لتحرير المرافق الطبية لرعايتهم

التخويف من الأطباء والعاملين في المجال الطبي في الدخول إلى المستشفيات بما في ذلك استخدام الأسلحة النارية التي عقدت من مسافة قريبة ، والحرمان من دخول لحضور للأشخاص المرضى والجرحى

وتمزيق للأفراد العسكريين الذين يرفضون حمل السلاح ضد مواطنيهم جنبا إلى جنب مع تفحم بعض وسائل جثثهم

استخدام نعوت العنصري والديني ضد الجماعات الدينية للتحريض على الشعب القيام بها ، في حالة البحرين ، من قبل جنود من البلدان المجاورة يرتدون زي الشرطة البحرينية

انتشار واسع قتل النساء والأطفال والرضع في كثير من الأحيان الانتقام

وقد حضر دخول منازل المشتبه فيهم من الاحتجاجات

دفن الضحايا في مقابر لا تحمل علامات في كثير من الأحيان تحت جنح الظلام

وتحدث التلفزيون الرسمي الليبي على عدد من المناسبات من بلدة “التطهير” استعادت من قوات المعارضة. مصادر بحرينية تقرير الاستماع إلى مصطلح يستخدم من قبل قوات الاحتلال. حتى ظهرت أدلة ، لا يمكن للمرء أن يعرف بالضبط ما نفذت. ذكريات مع استخدام هذا المصطلح في البوسنة ، وفكر في ما قد يعني وتقشعر لها الأبدان.

وبالإضافة إلى ذلك ، هناك تقارير غير مؤكدة قادمة من البحرين في الفترة من شهود موثوق بها من أشكال العنف والجرائم التي تتجاوز حتى أسوأ من تلك المذكورة أعلاه.

 

 

القسم 4 الاحتياجات الامم المتحدة لقانون ببساطة لا يدين

الأمم المتحدة والهيئات الدولية المختصة الحاجة إلى الطلب على الفور الوصول غير المقيد إلى المناطق المتضررة من أجل التحقق بأنفسهم مدى الفظائع التي ترتكب

ويمكن الإشارة إلى أن ترتكب المنظمات الإنسانية وجماعات حقوق الإنسان على أرض الواقع وخارج البلدان المعنية يمكن أن تفعل المزيد لتسجيل وجمع ونشر الأدلة على العنف والجرائم. هذا الإجراء ضروري لأن من روايات شهود العيان على نطاق واسع من التلوث، وتدمير إخفاء الأدلة.

الكاتب ليس مواطنا في أي بلد في المنطقة، لا يوجد لديه اتصالات لأية مجموعة أو منظمة، أو أي انتماءات دينية.

مالكولم مونرو ب د

 

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Middle East Threatens to Descend Into Chaos: Why the UN Needs to Act Now


To whom it may concern

Wednesday March 16, 2011

Introduction

The indications at this moment are that Middle East and the North African region is potentially at the brink of a descent into chaos at a rate which, if it continues, should cause alarm amid acts of utter barbarity and unimaginable ferocity being committed by the hour at the present time by forces of the regimes of Libya and Bahrain, which are indiscriminately perpetrated against their own people.

It seems  prudent to call for the United Nations and the International Community to investigate and act without delay in a manner which brings these savageries to an immediate halt. To not act in a timely manner may result in a humanitarian crisis, and perhaps worse, occurring in the region.

The violence is not being committed by any groups or peoples. The violence is being committed by governments. The ferocity and barbarity of the violent acts by the Bahraini government assisted by forces of the governments of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates is not being opposed or resisted by the people of Bahrain against whom it is directed.

A situation, which began in a small village in Tunisia, which spread to Yemen, Egypt, Libya and Bahrain, and which threatens to extend to other countries in the region, is now descending into acts of horrendous violence perpetrated at ferocious speed.

These acts are being perpetrated by the forces of repressive regimes against their own peaceful populations.

The crisis is increasing in severity because the increasingly savage acts employed by the forces of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi to quell an uprising in Libya have not been acted against with a view to bringing them to an immediate halt.

World leaders, humanitarian organizations, the United Nations and other relevant agencies have, as yet, not recognized the ferocity and speed with which regimes facing popular uprisings will act to crush by increasingly horrendous means the overwhelmingly peaceful expressions of calls for democracy and representative government by means of free and fair elections.

The lack of action to halt the increasingly dreadful means being employed by Gaddafi’s security forces, which include the use of foreign mercenaries against his own civilian population to eliminate dissent, has given license to other regimes in the region who feel under threat to use tactics and means which exceed even the frightfulness of those employed by Gaddafi.

Section 1 How Gaddafi Deflects Attention From His Committing and Concealing His Crimes

The use of such means, judged by international standards, have already been identified as constituting crimes against humanity by the International Community, and, as such, subject to prosecution by the International Court of Justice at the Hague. This identification is enshrined in UN Resolution 1960, but the extend and depths of them have been cloaked and deliberating hidden by, among others:

Co-opting, confinement, harassment, intimidation and torture of international media attempting to report the situation on the ground

Co-opting and deliberate manipulation and misleading of international media, in a concerted effort to employed lies, deceptions and denials clearly at odd with readily visible reality and evidence based publicly witnessed accounts

Use of media, internet and communications blackouts, extending to the use of power blackouts and water supply shutoff

Use of state propaganda to manipulate, mislead, withhold information, and lie to their own populations, and the use of regime officials outside the country to engage in a similar activity towards officials of other countries in which they are resident

Use of propaganda strategies which have, among other effects, callously played upon Western fears,

Threats of various kinds directed at the international community, including the destruction of oil facilities, the release of chemical weapons, among others

The willful denial in the face of overwhelming evidence of the use of brutal and illegal force

Engaging in an attempt to intimidate and falsely discredit individual international leaders and the deliberate playing off of one individual international leader against another

Section 2 Failures to Address What is Happening on the Ground

International leaders and officials have seriously compromised their approach to the crisis on at least the following counts:

They have failed to offer leadership and speak in a unified voice against the wrongs being perpetrated by regimes in the region against peaceful protests.

They have so far failed to speak out publicly to clearly acknowledge the legitimacy of, and offer support to, the calls for democracy and fair and free elections made by unarmed, peaceful, popular uprisings in Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen and Lybia, and Bahrain, which now threaten to engulf many of the 22 countries of the region.

They have so far failed publicly to acknowledge that the popular uprisings, in the face of extraordinary means of violence being used against them, are nonviolent and resolutely peaceful, are completely unarmed, resorting only when under mortal attack to the barest means of defense, and that these are nonpartisan, are nonsectarian, nonreligious, and non ideological.

Furthermore, the uprisings espouse ideas and values identical to those upheld by most democracies and pose no threat to any government anywhere, with the notable exception of their own. In the face of previous doubt about, and ignorance of, the nature of the aims of the uprisings, living proof of the nature of the aims of the uprisings now exists in post-Mubarak Egypt, if any were needed.

They have been utterly negligent in making any effort to gain knowledge of the nature and message of protestors and sabotaged their own ability to recognize the universal and humane nature of the uprisings. Because of this failure, they have allowed officials and representatives inside their own countries to deliberately misrepresent the nature of the uprisings in an effort to raise and play upon fears associated with ethnic, religious and extremist stereotypes by deliberately and cynically misrepresenting the uprisings in order to make political gains.

They have placed their security and economic interests in the region far ahead of concerns for humaneness and adherence to the values which they uphold in their own countries and have repeatedly said over decades that they support in the region and elsewhere in the world, and have hedged their bets on the outcomes of the uprisings in order to secure oil and other economic interests in individual counties and the region as a whole.

In the face of the popular uprisings, they have expressed support for the regimes that the uprisings were opposing, up to the point when the regimes head was deposed.

On the one hand they have denied the legitimacy of, undermined the integrity of, directly placed in jeopardy the lives of ordinary men, women and children, involved in the uprisings or not, living in, and threatened the security of, the country where the uprising is taking place by publicly discussing and threatening to intervene militarily despite clear calls by voices within the uprisings that such interventions were neither sought nor welcome, and other the other have been unable, to date, to marshall and put into effect no fly zones in a timely manner such that its speedy and effective  introduction would have a seriously chilling effect upon the most flagrant  means of violence being visited upon the population by the entrenched government.

Calls for those perpetrating acts constituting crimes against humanity subject to prosecution by the international court of justice were put into place with no means of their being enforced thereby leading to the greater levels of violence against populations on the principle that one might as well be hung for a sheep as a lamb.

Section 3 A Partial List of Crimes

It is not possible at this juncture to list the worst excesses of violence, and heinous crimes being presently committed by security forces and others on behalf of the regimes involved for some have not yet been validated for the reasons given earlier. The regimes so far involved, and the expectation should be that the number of regimes employing these practices will soon rapidly proliferate, are those of Libya, with the assistance of outside governments, the identities of which have not been positively identified, but are alleged to include Algeria and Syria, together with reports that mercenaries are still being flown into Tripoli and other airstrips in Libya and undeclared movements of military transports to and from Bulgaria, and Bahrain, with the publicly declared and widely witnessed assistance of forces from the Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

A partial and certainly incomplete list of verified or partially verified means of extraordinary violence and repression used in Libya and Bahrain against the unarmed populace includes:

Use of helicopters and military aircraft to fire on and bomb civilians
Use of tanks, heavy arms such as mortars, anti-tank guns, and rocket propelled grenades
Use snipers from rooftops and other places
Forced entry into places of worship during prayer
Chemically debilitating tear gas style canisters whose effects would appear to include rotting of flesh where chemicals have made contact with the skin and the inducement of epileptic fevers from exposure to the fumes
Use of live ammunition at close and blank range
The use of ambulances as armoured vehicles against unarmed civilians
Holding of hostages of the family members of citizenry resident overseas and the parading of the hostages on state television
The gathering up of migrant workers and inducing them by means of payments or mortal threats to take part in acts of violence against civilians

The entry into hospitals and removal of the injured and of dead bodies
The intimidation of doctors and medical personnel into treating government forces and the displacement of critically injured civilians to free up medical facilities for their care
The intimidation of doctors and medical personnel at the entry to hospitals including the use of fire arms held at point blank range and denial of entry to attend to sick and injured persons
The dismembering of military personnel who refuse to take arms against their fellow countrymen along with the charring by some means of their dead bodies
The use of racial and religious epithets against religious groups to incite divisions carried out, in the case of Bahrain, by soldiers of the neighboring countries dressed in Bahraini police uniforms
The wide spread killing of women, children and babies often as reprisals
The entry into homes of those suspected of having attended protests
The burial of victims in unmarked graves frequently under cover of darkness

Libyan state television has spoken on a number of occasions of “cleansing” town recaptured from opposition forces. Bahraini sources report of hearing the term used by the occupying forces. Until the evidence emerges, one cannot know what precisely has been carried out. With memories of the use of the term in Bosnia, the thought of what it might mean is chilling.

In addition, there are unverified reports coming out of Bahrain from credible witnesses of forms violence and crimes which exceed even the worst of those listed above.

Section 4 UN Needs to Act Not Simply Condemn

The UN and appropriate international bodies need to demand immediate unfettered access to the affected areas in order to verify for themselves the extent of the atrocities being committed

It may be pointed out that humanitarian organizations and human rights groups on the ground and outside the countries involved could do more to record, collect and disseminate evidence of the violence and crimes being perpetrated. This action is necessary because of widespread eye witness accounts of concealment, contamination and destruction of evidence.

The writer is not a citizen of any country in the region, has no connections to any group or organization, nor any religious has affiliations.

Malcolm D B Munro

Filed under: Culture, , , , , , , ,

The Emergence of Civil Governments in the Middle East and North Africa – MENA


Part 1 A Warning to Incumbent Monarchs and Dictators in the Region

All of us, inside and outside the Middle East and North Africa, implicated in the changes and events taking place, for all of us have a role to play: we can either hinder or assist in the process. Be warned, those inside or outside of the region who choose to attempt to hinder the process will immediately enter the pages of history. If you wish to be part of the future, and indeed to be alive to live in it, you will be advised to join those who are working for it as it unfolds.

To be more specific, if you are a head of state in the region who presently still retains your position and up to now, by virtue of your position, have exerted your will on the people under you, you are in mortal danger.

If you employ violence in any form, be it denial of communications, the employment of propaganda, extending to the vast panoply of traditional physical means, against the expressions of the will of the people whom you are attempting to subjugate to your will, you endanger your position. If you persist in the use of violence, and indeed escalate its use, you endanger your life.

Despite any protestation you make to the contrary, on whatever grounds, your position, as a result of your use of violence, is identical to those who have already fallen, and to those who are already caught up in the process, and the more you resist, the greater the levels of violence you attempt to employ, the greater will be the certainty that you will be deposed. As greater get the levels of violence you use in a vain attempt to maintain your position, the more you guarantee your demise.

And know this. With the demise of each person from a position such as that which you presently occupy, and with the swift passage of time, as the world gains greater and greater understanding of the legitimacy of demands  of the people in the region, including by those whom you attempt to hold captive to your will, so will their fear of these forces be lessened, the wider and with greater efficacy will be the means that the international community uses to thwart your efforts, the greater will be the confidence of the international community in the application of those measures to ensure your demise, as will be the reduction in time which will pass to the implementation of those measures.

What drives you to balk at these demands and to resist them, is fear. No one can ask that you overcome your fear. All that can be asked is, that you, as soon as you can, bow gracefully to them and obtain for yourself an honourable retirement. You face the forces of history and no mortal can withstand such forces. What you are witnessing in square after square in the region, when it comes time, as it surely will for the people to enter and occupy the squares of the towns in the country of which you are nominally head of, know that it is your turn. Bow to the inevitable. You may say, “I am not going without a fight.” But do you gain from this? What gain do you make? You are going to lose. This is not a boxing ring where you slug it out until the knockout blow. Better to leave with the greatest amount of your dignity intact and with a measure of respect from those who understood the courage it took for you to make that decision.

You may, if open to council, adopt dialogue and the outcome of that will depend upon the sincerity with which you engage in it. You should not be surprised, if you have any honesty about you, if your offer is rejected. If it is accepted, then you are best advised to be honourable in your engagement in it and faithful in pursuit of outcomes favourable to the people who have shown a willingness to retain you in some way in the political process. The alternatives are stark, and pragmatism has never been your strength, but if you are willing to survive on terms favourable to both parties, you may make the transition. All choices have risk. One at least leaves you alive, others do not.

To those of you in the region who are monarchs, I can address you with a measure of respect, for I am by birth the citizen of a constitutional monarchy, and have lived the proof of their assured strengths over republics. I also offer, for what it is worth, a degree of sympathy, for you are required to make adjustments in a space of time amounting to weeks where those who successfully made the transition elsewhere in the past did so over the course of centuries. I don’t doubt that in either case the pain of transition was, and will be, considerable. Perhaps a tooth pulled quickly provides relief more speedily than one pulled agonizingly slowly.

So, to those of you who are monarchs, I suggest to you that you can secure your survival and salvation if, and only if, you hand over power to a duly elected body, that you assist with others in putting into place a constitution in your country which sees you as its head, oversee a proper transition of power to that duly elected body, that you announce and adhere to a timetable which swiftly implements the aforegoing, and that you announce from the onset that you are willing and eager to remain head of state as a constitutional monarch. Should this not be to your taste, then make provision to step aside immediately. Should you elect to engage in the course of action outlined in the previous paragraph, know that your position will very rapidly become identical with that of the dictator or despot, Should you change your mind, having embarked on the latter course of action, know that your ability to change horses midstream is unlikely to meet with success.

May I add that, where you as a reigning monarch is concerned, you have vested in the honour of your people as they have vested honour in you. You may squander that honour, or you may retain for yourself honour and dignity by offering and adopting to serve your people. You may besmirch that honour by attempting to purchase the goodwill of your people with your wealth but you should recognize that your people require and demand what none of your wealth will purchase. Take the course of transition to constitutional monarch, retain by you wise and good council, and you will survive to retain the honour and esteem of your people. Give up willingly your power and you will retain your wealth and secure your position for you and your heirs. Best of all, by bestowing upon them their dignity, you will attain the undying respect of your people. Monarchs through wise action can maintain the love of their people, an attribute afforded to few dictators.

Part 2 Emerging Democracies in the MENA: Fundamental principles renewed

Some of the fundamental principle of the emergent democracy in Egypt appear to be that democracy is only partially served by creating and maintaining structures that allow free and fair voting, the creation and sustaining of political parties, the writing of sound constitutions that permit the widest, soundest and fairest possible representation of people and parties, the creation of governing structures that provide for fair and equal representation, and an effective and representative government.

Those at the heart of the creation of democracy in Egypt know what they want. They may lack the means and political wherewithal to implement their ideas which may be why they stand back from the process and seek to guide it rather than implementing it. They know what they want and they may even have a sense of when it is that it is appropriate and necessary to implement that particular piece of the process. It is not clear for the present that they know how to implement the ideas and actions they desire. Those of us outside that process who follow and strive to understand what they are doing and seeking to achieve may be help and assist by pointing them to the tools and resources that are available to inform and educate those charged with their implementation. One example serves at present to make the point: the creation of a civil police force. This is a topic which deserves amplification in a future post.

Any time spent witnessing what groups like #Jan25 are doing, what they are saying reveals that each of the individuals in involved has a sharp and particular grasp of all the elements that they need to see into place for Egypt to emerge with a fully functioning democracy. These and others, as we understand democracy, are all necessary in its fullest implementation. But they are not sufficient. It is no longer acceptable to sustain and tolerate a democratic process and the structures, as presently conceived, which rely upon the will and representation of the people being expressed solely by means of periodic voting of issues and parties. The voices of the people who make up the democratic process need to be better heard than in the past. Their opinions, desires and needs need to be heard and addressed in an ongoing manner that the existing structures, channels and platforms for the democratic process, do not provide. It is no longer tolerable for representatives of the people to take decisions on their behalf, based on the knowledge of their voters gained as they kissed babies heads and shook hands in the markets and squares they visited but once, before vanishing into their legislative chambers, with no further contact with voters, and where they are held hostage to special interests and cronyism, where they are freely subverted as representatives of the people, by corruption and pork, special interest favours, and the insertions into legislation of sweet heart clauses whose sole beneficiaries are their friends and family members, and where they spend or squander the hard gotten earnings of their voters / taxpayers, without further input from their voters as to how that money is spent.

Spice into the previous paragraph your own particular favourite examples of the cynicism which attends the willful usurpation of the present democratic process by our elected representatives. It is no long acceptable that governments, local, regional or national, take actions and implement policies, which result in such anger and resentment that voters take to the streets to express their positions. And further, it is absolutely not possible to for a moment longer to permit, far less tolerate, governments engaging in violent means of suppressing those expressions of will and popular sentiment. For, at its very base, is the principle that the voice of the people shall be heard. Therefore, new structures and means need to emerge which provide for dialogue, dialogue between representatives and those they represent. The democratic process in the West, where by West we mean established democracies, requires overhaul and refreshing. The present structure whereby voters express their views only at election time is not a sufficient expression of people’s voices. That voter turnout in established democracies and that, having been elected into office, politicians feel at liberty to implement policy which they know flies in the face of their voters’ wishes.  The present democratic structures are flawed in that, having elected politicians into office, we are devolving to them certain of our responsibilities for an extended period of time, let’s say two to four years. In the meantime, we have no direct means of holding our elected representatives accountable. Politicians elected on this basis feel at liberty to pursue agendas frequently completely at odds with the will of the people who voted them into office.

This is the principle of representative government. We as citizens hand off certain of our responsibilities to others to act on our behalf. This system is seriously flawed in that we are handing off to others power which belongs to us and should never leave us. We are reduced in stature and lose our integrity as humans. We are handing off responsibilities which, in few other areas of life we would willingly do. We are granting power to others which belongs to each of us and only to us. In relinquishing degrees of power to others, we are granting those others to make decisions on our behalf. We have no direct control over the decisions that are made on our behalf. Decisions, under such circumstances, will be made which are irreversible. Decisions will be made which the cost of undoing will make a mockery of undoing them. To borrow a term I heard used recently by, we are infantilized by the process. We need as citizens to more fully exercise our responsibilities. We need to give greater thought as to what we need to do to the present democratic structure to make it more equitable, more responsive. And we need to do this in a way that retains all of the good associated with the present system. We need to identify the greatest flaws and begin to address those flaws in a manner that results in changes or additions to the democratic process to our mutual benefit.

If you asked me to give a term for such a democratic process I would be hard pressed to answer. For, to give it a term would have you ask, rightly, “What do you mean by that?” I would be harder pressed to answer. What we need is a more participatory democracy. It seems to me that if we set out clearly what it is we want from democracy, at least what more do we want than we get at present. If we ask those questions, if we can get consensus that that is what most of us would like, then we will be in a position to discuss how we go about getting them.

This is not about political leanings. This is not an expression of left and right wing tendencies. The ability to vote, similarly, is also not an expression of a left or right wing view. Who gets to vote; yes, that might be.

So too, the principles I touch on are fundamentals. How might it be possible to achieve a more participatory democracy? Well, I think we have tools that would aid in the process. And, having defined more clearly what we want, we will find, or invent, the tools and mechanisms to implement them. Let me point to one tool we have at present that might potentially serve, in an adapted form, among others: Twitter. I can right now tweet the president of the United States, any official anywhere in the United States who has a Twitter account. Or any official anywhere who has a Twitter account. How might this powerful tool be developed? I don’t know. But those with the knowhow would be able to tell us.

The term has been used with regard to the European Union: continually seeking to create a more perfect union. Let us create a democratic system which has this principle at its core. The end point will never be reached. But humans will be around for long enough to try.

I have the hunch that it is no less than this principle that the founders of the new democracies, the groups such as #Jan25, appear to seek to provide as a central element of the new structures they are helping build.

Part 3 An Exhortation to the Media

To the Media: Don’t Hire People, Experts, Who Haven’t a Clue

Do not hire or invite onto your programmes experts who belong to yesterday and how have no knowledge of present events. Do not invite people to talk about the dark side of the moon who have never been there. Invite those who know what is going on the ground. Who have gone in and talked to the people who are making these revolutions possible. If your invitees have never seen an elephant, please do not invite them to your programmes to attempt to discuss one.

Reporting the Revolution: Accuracy of Language in the Media

If there are individuals in and out of the region who listen to what we presently call activists, or the youths of the various moments, – while that term is inappropriate, we have no other for now – and understand what it is that they are saying, what they and their followers are seeking to achieve, then I urge such individuals to speak up, to find whatever platforms seem to them to be appropriate, in order to initiate a debate as to what we are actually witnessing.

To underscore this point, let me draw your attention to the fact that the world’s media, when reporting events in Libya, especially when referring to those opposing the regime in Tripoli, swing back and forth on the hour between talking of rebels, activists, anti-Gaddafi forces, along with a whole plethora of phrases guaranteed to mislead and misrepresent, pulled ready made from the lexicography of historically different insurgencies from the past, to be chided constantly by groups such as #Feb17, @EnoughGaddafi and @ShababLibya, as to the inappropriateness of such the terms. Does the press and media know the difference between the use of the terms “those fighting for democracy” and “freedom fighters”. The use of accurate and appropriate terminology is crucial when reporting an insurgency, since listeners and readers, no less governments, will modulate their responses in accordance with the terms used. Let me be even more specific. One world renowned media organization, name and source not mentioned to avoid distraction, reported of a recent possible action by anti-Gaddafi forces on Tripoli as a “terrorist action”. In making this demand, this is not a case of political correctness nor avoidance of accurate terms. A spade is a spade, and may be a shovel, but it is not a pitchfork. If we can’t get our definitions and terminology correct, our reporting condemns us to mediocrity. Editors and producers must be able to advise staff on the difference between rebellion and revolution, between rebel and revolutionary. The difficulties media face in reporting from the region are legion, there is no excuse for them to exhibit sheer unprofessionalism in the language they use to make such reports. Report the truth and make no attempt to cleanse the language. A beating is a beating and not harassment. Torture is torture and not abuse or harsh treatment or any of the other crap phrases used by oily tongued politicians who wish to sugar coat the truth.

Note to #Jan25 and other groups; conduct a sit-in seminar with world media on this point in Tahrir Square, Cairo, Egypt and charge them a fee for their pains. If we can do nothing else at the present time, let’s at least get the press reporting correctly. The beloved Al Jazeera needs to be there as they are as guilty as any other. They might even consider sponsoring it.

Acknowledgments

I would like to take this opportunity to offer hearty thanks to the following:

Those hardy souls who have left a comment on the website

Those of you who have linked from your blog or on-line newspaper to my web page

Those who have tweeted me on Twitter and commented on my Facebook page to say that they found a previous article thoughtful, that it made some good points

Those of you who follow me on Twitter

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