is this the man that can finally unify libya
Last Updated : GMT 05:21:58
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
Last Updated : GMT 05:21:58
Arab Today, arab today

Is this the man that can finally unify Libya?

Arab Today, arab today

is this the man that can finally unify libya

Dr. Azeem Ibrahim

Libya has effectively been a failed state mired in an intractable civil war since the Libyan people have risen up against Muammar Qaddafi in 2011. Whatever else we may wish to say about Qaddafi, he was a unifying force in a country deeply fractured along ethnic, tribal and ideological lines. A brutal and malign unifying force, but a unifying force nonetheless.

The more one delves into the detail of the ongoing conflict in the country, the easier it is to lose hope that a stable and prosperous Libya might be possible at all. There are multiple power centers distributed all over the country, each with their own private militias, there are foreign fighters associated with ISIS and al-Qaeda still roaming the land, despite years of Western-backed efforts to stamp them out, there are at least two separate, semi-viable state apparatuses running in parallel and claiming authority over the entire territory, complete with their own central banks and currency – and, of course, there is international proxy power play, with Russia and the West backing different sides, while Arab states back different proxies on the ground. None of this suggests that anything other than endless conflict is possible.

And yet, a remarkable aspect of the ongoing mess is Libya is that it has revealed that there are things around which all Libyans can rally. The clearest example of this is the robust opposition to ISIS that all indigenous Libyan groups share. ISIS did establish itself around Sirte and a handful of other towns from 2014 onwards, and started claiming territory as it had done in Syria, but virtually all other major players ganged up on them and snuffed them out fairly promptly. Ironically, it was ISIS who first showed that Libyan unity might be possible.

Another remarkable aspect of the extremely fluid conflict is that very few groups have been consistently opposed to each other since 2011. Every group, militia or government institution has consistently pursued to maximise their own influence and power, but to that end they will at some point have worked with most other players on the map. There are few truly intractable and irreconcilable divisions. Instead, there are private interests, private feuds, private ambitions and diverging visions. And, most acutely, the lack of one player who can impose a monopoly on the use of violence in the territory in the way Qaddafi had done.

And lastly, there are, in fact, individuals who have a vision for a unified Libya as an inclusive state where all these fractious ambitions might coexist with each other in non-violent, and potentially even beneficial ways.
The idiosyncrasies of Libya

The person who stands out the most as a visionary future leader for a united, successful Libya at this moment in time is Dr Aref Ali Nayed, a Canada-educated Islamic scholar, engineer, philosopher and Libyan Ambassador to the UAE – who to date is the only individual who has announced his candidacy for president. Dr Ali Nayed has an impressive academic and educational background, but also business and philanthropic track record, both in the West, and in Libya where he returned to in 1990s. But most of all, what stands out is what he envisions for Libya.

Dr Ali Nayed sees a radically localist Libya, a Libya of cities and hinterlands each of which celebrate their own unique cultural and historical heritage, each of which fosters its own vision for itself, and all of whom would be supported by a central government to maintain open and mutually beneficial relations with each other and with other parts of the region and the world. The central government would be there to administer the peace and the shared public goods, such as the country’s vast oil reserves, but otherwise all the differences and idiosyncrasies of Libya would be embraced and fostered, rather than fought over.

This kind of vision has the merit that it can harken back to the Islamic Golden Age when well-managed diversity was a source of strength for what were then the world’s foremost empires, and in doing so it can appeal to Islamic traditionalists in the country. But of course, it is also a supremely practical approach, perhaps the only approach that can work, in a country of diverse, but fiercely independent and proud peoples and groups.

The difficult part will be for such a vision to emerge dominant over the egos and interests of the factional leaders who now divvy up Libya between them. Even so, the power of the factional leaders does not come from their egos, or their alignment to certain interests. It comes from the people who are willing to fight and die for them. And if those people are given better reasons to live – and let live –, in a Libya where they and their families can live in peace and prosper, the vision of Dr Ali Nayed for Libya may yet prevail.

From: Alarabiya

GMT 18:35 2018 Friday ,14 December

Can Armenia break the ice with Turkey?

GMT 21:25 2018 Thursday ,13 December

PM limps on with UK still in Brexit gridlock

GMT 21:21 2018 Thursday ,13 December

US begins crackdown on Iran sanctions violations

GMT 14:33 2018 Wednesday ,12 December

Political turbulence likely to continue unabated in 2019

GMT 14:26 2018 Wednesday ,12 December

Canada standing on the wrong side of history

GMT 13:27 2018 Tuesday ,11 December

France and the crisis of democracy

Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

is this the man that can finally unify libya is this the man that can finally unify libya


Arab Today, arab today Modern colorful bedroom renovation

GMT 11:23 2017 Thursday ,21 December

Modern colorful bedroom renovation
Arab Today, arab today For the Variety of Interior Design Styles

GMT 11:14 2017 Tuesday ,19 December

For the Variety of Interior Design Styles

GMT 16:53 2016 Thursday ,16 June

Two policemen killed in Egypt's Sinai

GMT 12:54 2017 Saturday ,04 November

Canada: Amazon to add 1,000 jobs in Vancouver

GMT 07:12 2018 Sunday ,02 December

Putin accuses Ukraine of not wanting peace

GMT 08:09 2015 Tuesday ,22 September

Boeing planning China factory

GMT 22:04 2018 Friday ,12 January

Bahrain press headlines

GMT 14:25 2017 Wednesday ,27 December

China to bring paramilitary police force under military

GMT 22:41 2017 Tuesday ,03 January

Private wild animal ownership banned in the UAE

GMT 12:36 2017 Sunday ,10 December

France bids emotional farewell to rocker Hallyday

GMT 02:42 2016 Thursday ,22 December

UN Secretary-General Could Run in South Korea Elections

GMT 10:21 2017 Saturday ,11 November

PM arrives at Charsadda

GMT 09:42 2017 Thursday ,09 March

World’s heaviest woman looses 100kg after surgery

GMT 02:53 2016 Tuesday ,23 August

China to establish national eco-experimental zones

GMT 15:54 2017 Saturday ,07 January

Aoun visit aims to mend ties with Saudi Arabia

GMT 09:48 2016 Wednesday ,02 November

Russia declares 10-hour Aleppo 'humanitarian pause'

GMT 09:02 2017 Saturday ,11 February

Dry run for Modi as India’s most populous state votes

GMT 00:59 2017 Wednesday ,22 February

Heart bypass surgery device without stopping the heart'

GMT 07:22 2017 Wednesday ,03 May

Trump plays peacemaker, hosting Abbas

GMT 06:52 2017 Monday ,09 October

US halts Turkey visas after staffer's arrest
Arab Today, arab today
 Arab Today Facebook,arab today facebook  Arab Today Twitter,arab today twitter Arab Today Rss,arab today rss  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube

Maintained and developed by Arabs Today Group SAL.
All rights reserved to Arab Today Media Group 2021 ©

Maintained and developed by Arabs Today Group SAL.
All rights reserved to Arab Today Media Group 2021 ©

arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
بناية النخيل - رأس النبع _ خلف السفارة الفرنسية _بيروت - لبنان
arabstoday, Arabstoday, Arabstoday