Gaddafi Circus Comes to Italy: Grievance Theater & Compo-Demands Follow Instantly…

Richard Owen in Rome/Times/Links thanks to Gates of Vienna

Gaddafi, who has a women-only corps of bodyguards, held a similar meeting on a visit to Paris in 2007 with 1,000 selected women guests, who were told he wanted to “save European women.” More>>

Colonel Gaddafi has arrived in Rome at the start of an historic visit to Libya’s former colonial masters with an archive photograph provocatively pinned to his chest showing the arrest of an anti-Italy guerrilla fighter dubbed “The Lion of the Desert”.

The photograph shows the arrest in 1931 by colonial Italian troops of the Libyan guerrilla leader Omar al Mukhtar. Al Mukhtar’s frail elderly son, who descended the aircraft steps with difficulty just behind Gaddafi in traditional white Arab robes, is part of the 300-strong delegation accompanying the Libyan leader. A Libyan financed 1980s feature film on the anti colonial struggle, The Lion of the Desert, was recently broadcast on Italian television for the first time.

Officials from both Libya and Italy insist that despite the anti-colonial gesture, the colonel’s three day trip – his first since gaining power in a coup 40 years ago – is a “visit of reconciliation”. Wearing full colonel’s uniform with gold epaulettes, numerous medals, sunglasses and straggly long black hair beneath a military cap, the Libyan leader said “a page of the past has been turned, thanks to the courage of Italy”, as he embraced Silvio Berlusconi, the Prime Minister.

Irrelevant Crazy Arab Dictator Compares US to al Qaeda



Jawa Report:

Wait, you mean Ghadaffi’s still alive?

“What difference is there between the American attack on our homes in 1986 and bin Laden’s terrorist actions?” he asked. “If bin Laden has no state and is an outlaw, America is a state with international rules.”

Bombing Ghadaffi for supporting terror and using innocent civilians as a missile to kill other innocent civilians are really six of one and a half a dozen of the other, right?

Mr Berlusconi, who paved the way for the visit by travelling to Libya last year to apologise for the colonial period and offer three billion pounds in compensation, echoed the remark, saying a “painful page has been turned”. He had earlier said he would not be able to greet the colonel at the airport because of a pain in the neck which had afflicted him for the past month since scandals blew up over his colourful private life.

Formerly part of the Ottoman Empire, Libya was occupied by Italy in 1911 and was made a colony in the 1930s during the country’s Fascist dictatorship. It gained independence in 1951 after a brief Franco-British administration under a UN mandate.

Libya still nurses grievances over the thousands who were killed or incarcerated in concentration camps during the colonial era, while Italy still resents Colonel Gaddafi’s action in giving thousands of residents just hours to leave after he overthrew King Idris in a coup in 1969. Some of their descendants are still demanding compensation for confiscated property and assets.

Colonel Gaddafi, who held talks with Mr Berlusconi and President Napolitano after his arrival, is to meet 700 top Italian women on Friday at a Rome concert hall, an encounter hosted by Mara Carfagna, the former model and television presenter who was last year appointed Minister for Equal Opportunities by the Prime Minister.

At a lunch at the Qurinal Palace, his residence, President Napolitano said the Libyan leader’s visit was a contribution to peace in the Middle East and the Mediterranean, and praised Gaddafi as a “force for moderation in Africa”. Italians at the lunch were served white wine but the Libyan delegation drank only orange juice “in accordance with Koranic rules”.

Today, however, Gaddafi faces a tougher day with protests from students at Rome University and at the Senate, where leftist and Christian Democratic Senators said a decision to invite him to address the upper house was “inappropriate”.

Emma Bonino, a senator for the Radical Party and a former EU Commissioner, said Colonel Gaddafi had “violated human rights” and the invitation to him by the Senate – dominated by Mr Berlusconi’s centre Right party, the People of Liberty – was “madness”. Two Radical senators said they would go on hunger strike.

Senators from the Democratic Party, the main opposition party, vowed to boycott his address altogether. Felice Belisario of the left of centre Italy of Values party said its senators would remain in the chamber but would stage a “”spectacular” gesture of protest. “It will be a surprise, you will see” he told reporters.

Police threw a tight security cordon round the Colonel’s tent for receiving guests, erected in the park surrounding Villa Doria Pamphili, the restored Renaissance mansion where he is staying. Three youths were arrested at the park entrance for pasting up anti-Gaddafi posters during the night.

Libya had used the boatloads of illegal immigrants who head for Italy as a way of putting pressure on Rome. However after last year’s treaty it accepted joint patrols in its territorial waters and a new immigration accord under which Italy repatriates migrants intercepted on the Mediterranean. Today, Ignazio La Russa, the Defence Minister, said Italy had “never used force” in the repatriation operations.

The United Nations, the Vatican, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have criticised the repatriations, saying they are done with no effort to determine whether the migrants are eligible to remain in Italy as political refugees, and that Libya is not a signatory to international pacts offering protection to asylum seekers.

Italian business leaders hope the visit will boost oil-rich Libya’s petrodollar investments in Italian companies, including the banking group UniCredit and the energy giant Enel. Colonel Gaddafi and Mr Berlusconi are due to sign a series of bilateral agreements on trade and business.

Muammar and the sheilas

Andrew Bolt –


You can tell – from both unctious, hypocritical and celebrity-obsessed sides – that this is an early 21st century farce:

(Libyan leader) Colonel Gaddafi’s request to meet 1000 prominent Italian women during his trip to Italy last week generated scepticism and amusement in equal measure.An exotic assemblage filed in. There were leading figures from politics, culture and industry; ministers posed for cameras, lawyers talked earnestly in their seats and reality TV personalities blew kisses across the aisles….

Mara Cafagna, a former topless model turned Minister of Equal Opportunities (above, with the Libyan autocrat and former terrorist), started proceedings by describing the event as an “important day for relations between Italy and Libya”.

Ms Cafagna, who once described her experiences as Miss Italy as “a competition that makes you as a woman”, admirably espoused her new role as a figurehead of women’s rights… Colonel Gaddafi drummed his fingers on the table, lounged back in his large leather chair and perused his little green book, occasionally beckoning one of his female bodyguards (of the kind below), who shuffled back and forth with drinks and boxes of tissues…. 


Then it all went a bit wrong. Using a peculiar example of a steam train driver, Colonel Gaddafi called for two systems in the professional forum — “one suitable for men, the other for women”.

With growing murmurs in the auditorium and a few noisy exits, Colonel Gaddafi tried to regain some credibility by denouncing the treatment of women in Arabic and Islamic societies.

“Why should these women have to apply to the head of state for the right to drive a car?” he asked. The audience applauded politely, but were soon laughing incredulously as he went on to add that this was a matter that “their husbands or brothers should decide”.

imageIt finished as it began: 

He did not mingle but sat behind an imposing desk up on the stage, with Ms Carfagna next to him on a chair, blowing kisses to the women as he left.

One thought on “Gaddafi Circus Comes to Italy: Grievance Theater & Compo-Demands Follow Instantly…”

  1. ‘Gaddafi Circus Comes to Italy: Grievance Theater & Compo-Demands Follow Instantly…
    by sheikyermami on June 13, 2009

    People Smuggler Gaddafi Speaks in Senate:

    “Many billions of euros are needed to stem the flows of immigrants into the Mediterranean,” Gaddafi told the Senators. He described the one billion euros the EU currently gives Libya to contain immigration as “insufficient”…’

    There is another word for this besides ‘jizya’ and that is ‘BLACKMAIL’.

    This might have been the plan in the first place.
    Over decades send most of their people to the West to proliferate until it became obvious, to us, that something else was up, then demand a ransome to take them back. [With no intentions, mind]

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