Gadhafi Trying To Fool World With Deceitful Diplomacy Hit|
By: Dr. Mansour O. El-Kikhia
San Antonio Express-News
Web Posted: 05/10/2007 05:59 PM CDT
After many years of embargo and forced isolation, Moammar Gadhafi is back on the prowl, and his plans don't bode well for humanity. Flush with billions of dollars in oil money and an ego bigger than a deity's, he has decided to settle old scores and create new ones.
This time around, his target is no less than the Saudi royal family. A few years ago, he was implicated in an assassination attempt on King Abdullah. In an Arab summit, the Saudi king abruptly put an end to the Libyan dictator's crudeness and arrogance with a polite but sound and well-deserved tongue-lashing.
It was an unprecedented move in Arab political gatherings that obviously has left Gadhafi eager to avenge a humiliation witnessed by millions of Arabs around the globe.
His alleged attempt to murder the king on the heels of re-establishing relations with the Bush administration put him in deep trouble with the United States and has stopped the normalizations of relations at an ambassadorial level.
Since then, he has learned how the game of influence is played in the United States. Worldwide, money is important in opening doors, but in America, it is more important in buying knowledgeable and fast-talking consultants and public relations experts who can pave highways in rough seas and influence foreign policy-making.
As soon as the Bush administration re-established diplomatic relations with him, a slew of U.S. policy-makers, including congressmen and senators, flocked to Libya to meet the dictator. It now seems most of those trips were curiosity visits that did nothing to fundamentally change policy in Gadhafi's favor. He is now following a different tack to successfully thrust him into U.S. politics.
Gadhafi has been inviting American academicians and business leaders to Libya to debate him on a variety of topics of his choosing. Prominent among these have been Jewish leaders and academics, ranging from Daniel Pipes to Bernard Lewis. All the visitors are treated to first-class vacations at Libya's expense and a meeting with the "inspired and inspirer" colonel.
No expense is spared as is evident by Lewis' experience. After meeting with the colonel in his tent, the professor reportedly asked to be flown to Israel. The Libyan leader ordered his brother-in-law to immediately arrange for a private jet with a Maltese crew to fly Lewis to Cypress, where the necessary papers and permits were obtained for the trip to Israel. Pipes and another set of American Jewish scholars will embark to North Africa within the next few weeks.
What is evident is the message Gadhafi is trying to impart to these visitors, which he hopes will indirectly find its way into the halls of Congress and the White House. He has two simple messages: Trust me, for I am a changed man and our interests are congruent, and Iraq is not the problem; Saudi Arabia is, and the only way to rid the world of Islamic fundamentalism is to rid it of the al-Saud family and the monarchy.
The colonel refuses to comprehend that he cannot be trusted and that the problem of fundamentalism doesn't lie with the Saudi royal family but with dictators like him. The al-Saud family is not particularly pleasant, but it has more legitimacy in Saudi Arabia than Gadhafi's family has in Libya. And he has wreaked more havoc and destruction on the world and murdered more people than the al-Sauds and the Islamists combined.
Second, he is silly if he believes American Zionists will look kindly upon his overtures or will simply parrot his wishes to the U.S. administration. And for them to do that would cost him much more than he is willing to pay. I know Pipes and while I often disagree with him, I share his hate for dictatorships.
Finally, Iraq is proving to be a horrible event in Middle Eastern history and to have another one in Saudi Arabia would tear the region apart forever. But I suppose the only happy creature when a catastrophe befalls a family is their dog. Everyone is sad except the dog, which is happy at the abundance of food and people and the attention lavished upon it.
There really are bad people on this Earth, and it has nothing to do with race, color or religion. It has to do with ego, nastiness and all the other character vices that epitomize nasty people.