For the first time in what is over 42 years, Libya’s destiny seems to rest in our hands, Libyans and no others. How capable those hands are of such a responsibility is something I have never calculated, for I was over-whelmed by the new feeling of freedom that seemed to be injected into the atmosphere. Nevertheless, it must be said that some individuals have been taking advantage of the temporary unawareness of Libyans to push certain issues that benefit them individually in one way or another, leaving us normal citizens in a haze as to what is happening.
On the 5th of May, the GNC (General National Congress) passed the political Isolation law, which simply prohibits any individual who held a significant position under the Gaddafi regime — these positions include prime minister, minister, the revolutionary guards, ambassadors, deans of universities, heads of university departments and even heads of student unions, and anybody who is against the 17th of February revolution — from having any sort of future positions in the new Libya. Nevertheless, a considerable amount of the controversy around this decision is that, how it was somehow pushed into being a priority over-night by armed groups and certain political figures, who may have had a personal gain in this particular matter.
What I found to be most surprising is that, I, myself was leaning towards the law, but then I felt that if we were to force the law, Libya would miss out the open-minded and forward thinking minds that have nothing but Libya’s best interest at heart, and only worked under the Gaddafi regime because of an eagerness to try and improve Libya’s condition. By the time that it was passed, I noticed that, I had become somehow against it, mostly because of how it was passed. Before the 5th of May even arrived, many ministries were being surrounded by what we might call, “Armed Militias” demanding that the political Isolation law gets passed as soon as possible, which does not just show how an unknown force is trying to draw Libya’s future outline, but also horribly demoralizes the Libyan goal of democracy.
We revolted against the Gaddafi regime for using violence, intimidation, threats, and force to somewhat resolve any kind of predicament that dared step in his path; So how is it that some people are happy with the use of the same methods now? It should be clear to almost everyone that the isolation law was passed under unacceptable circumstances, and it gives off the message that Libyans have been trying to demolish for over 2 years now. Weapons don’t solve anything, but when you see a law like this being agreed upon, because of the armed supporters of it, then the message abruptly converts into one that encourages the use of weapons.
We all had hope in this revolution, and admittedly that started to fade a little every time someone used weapons to secure some personal gain, but it had never been as insignificant as it is now. How will we take Libya to the desired level when those who use their guns prevail upon those who use their minds? Weapons have already played their part in this revolution, it is time now to put them aside and think of how to start building Libya from scratch; for we are in a position where we are able to secure our children a country where they can see their full potential, where they can envision themselves growing up and achieving what was impossible under the Gaddafi regime, where they can rise to unimaginable levels of success, education, and leadership. Libya’s fate lies in our hands now, and we are in no position to let her down.
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Youth’s editorial policy.