Although I regret the loss of innocent life and fear the outcome, I derive grim satisfaction from the impending demise of Moammar Gadhafi. And the pointed lessons it teaches.
First, it was highly instructive to watch the rambling, disastrous speech by Gadhafi’s son Saif alIslam last Sunday. I mean watch literally; I speak no Arabic. And yet it was plain that here was a man -hailed last year by Landon Thomas Jr. in The New York Times as “the Western-friendly face of Libya and symbol of its hopes for reform and openness” and praised by the U.S. State Department as recently as Sunday -who had never heard an honest disagreement in his life.
Forced to attempt to speak frankly to his people in a crisis, he was catastrophically ill-equipped for the task, alternately threatening and patronizing and above all plainly bored at having to waste so much of his evening talking down to ungrateful morons.
At that moment we suddenly saw a great weakness of all tyrannies. Continue reading