Posted on 21-08-2011
Filed Under (Foreign Policy) by Rashtrakut

After weeks of horrendous economic news, Barack Obama and NATO can heave a sigh of relief. The longest ruling despot in the world appears to have fallen.

As expected, the fall was dramatic. Just last week the squabbling rebel alliance cut off the dictator’s supply lines. Today they entered Tripoli to cheering crowds. Some of Gaddafi’s sons appear to be in custody. Gaddafi’s fate is yet unknown.

It remains to be seen whether the tribes united by the Libyan flag can create a national state. Hopefully a revenge bloodbath can be avoided.

This also turns the spotlight uncomfortably on Bashar Assad. The fears of unraveling Syria’s ethnic quilt kept many Western states quiet. Last week it became clear patience was running out. While NATO bombardment is unlikely, the younger Assad is finding it hard to emulate his father in suppressing dissent with an iron fist.

The bufoonish Gaddafi falls largely unmourned, except perhaps in Caracas, Havana, Harare and some African capitals.

The bloody Arab summer has harvested its first tyrant.

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