Rocking the casbah

Burwell Stark Freelance Writer
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On Thursday, October 20, Moammar Gadhafi was killed by Libyan rebels. However, they were only able to get their hands on him after an air strike involving U.S. predator drones. Once the colonel’s death was confirmed, President Obama said: “This marks the end of a long and painful chapter for the people of Libya who now have the opportunity to determine their own destiny in a new and democratic Libya.”

To which I ask: Just how many world leaders will be killed by the winner of the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize before he leaves office? Is this what the Nobel committee meant when they awarded him the prize for his “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples”?

I doubt it.

While Obama said that Gadhafi’s death should serve as a warning to “iron-fisted” rulers across the Middle East, I believe it should also serve as a warning to Obama supporters — do what he says or he’ll get rid of you.

After all, Gadhafi publicly endorsed Obama’s campaign for president. Twice.

Regardless, the president has long been a supporter of the Arab Spring movement. For those who’ve heard the term but are unsure of the meaning, the Arab Spring (according to Source Watch) is the term for the “democratic uprisings [that] independently arose and spread across the Arab world.”

The biggest revolutions have taken place in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya, where the leader of each country was removed from power; less successful uprisings have occurred in Syria and Yemen. Sadly, in all five instances there has been massive loss of civilian life at the hands of the government.

In demonstration of his support for the Arab Spring, earlier this month the president met with the new Tunisian prime minister. The president said, “Tunisia has been an inspiration to all of us who believe that each individual man and woman has certain inalienable rights, and that those rights must be recognized in a government that is responsive, is democratic, in which free and fair elections can take place, and in which the rights of minorities are protected.”

How nice. Unfortunately, the audacity of reality is something completely different.

Tunisia held its first post-revolutionary national elections this past weekend. And which political party do you think was the victor?

If you said the party which is pro-democracy, then you need to go back to Zuccotti Park and spend some time at the Empathy Table.

If, however, you guessed the party which has long planned an Islamic takeover of Tunisia, for which it was banned by the now-deposed president, then you are correct.

I am talking about the Ennahda party, which is headed by a man who was exiled from Tunisia for 22 years and was called a “terrorist” by some of the Tunisian people when he went to cast his vote.

So when the president said that each man and woman in Tunisia has certain inalienable rights, he must have meant that they had the right to submit to Sharia law.

I wish I could say that Tunisia is an isolated case, but the leader of Libya’s transitional government (who have been in power for less than a week) stated on Sunday that “Sharia law would be the main source of legislation, that laws contradicting its tenets would be nullified, and that polygamy would be legalized.”

Whew, that’s a relief!

While it hasn’t been confirmed, I hear that, in an act of solidarity with the liberated Libyan people, Warren Jeffs proposed to three sisters and two cousins.

Egypt, too, has seen a rise in pro-Sharia Islamic political parties. Egypt is scheduled to hold its elections in November. It will be interesting to see if Sharia law is the victor there as well.

So while the winner of the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize says he is toppling iron-fisted dictators in the Middle East so that the people can be free, in reality he is paving the way for Sharia law to become the law of the land.

If he really wanted to rock the casbah, he would work with pro-democracy movements and ensure free and fair elections.

That won’t happen though. Sharia don’t like that.

Burwell Stark is a columnist and freelance writer. A former teacher, he also has worked in the areas of legislative research, budget analysis and communications. He lives outside Wake Forest, NC with his wife and daughter. For more of Burwell’s columns, visit burwellstark.com.