Monday, 28 February 2011

Libya : People's power + vast oil reserves = ???

Interestingly enough, popular committees are running the eastern
cities of Libya and are attempting to coordinate their actions. That's
one of the many good things to come out of Gadaffi's downfall : people's
assemblies have become tools ready to be used by genuine ... people.
But to what extent will the new tribal chiefs, military officers, former ministers, jurists, imams and "intellectuals" that have recently come to prominence be ultimately accountable before and controlled by the popular assemblies in their respective localities ? And what about
Socialism in such an oil-rich country ?

For the time being, each city's local council is ensuring the arrival of food
and supplies, setting up communications, getting local electricty plants
to function normally and providing for their local defense needs by having army
units and anti-Gaddafi fighters organize themselves into a coherent
local defense militia.
Moreover, Socialism appears to be an accepted idea, as all citizens
are aware that they get their wealth from oil, and that the proceeds of
such wealth should come back to the people.
So despite all the flux of civil war, the citizens of Libya have got two
ideas clearly in mind : a) local government answerable to the people and
b) ownership of the billions of dollars of proceeds from oil.
They feel Gaddafi failed them on both a) and b). But, alas, once a new
pro-Western government comes into place, they will once again be
deprived from a) and b). But maybe that's why there is so much chaos in
Libya, as the people do have a pretty good idea of a) and b) and will
not be relinquishing their weapons soon.
Libya could become an interesting experiment in people's power. If, of course,
a new government and corrupt officials intent on stealing the oil wealth for themselves
(and foreign interests) don't step in and take charge. Let's see how the class
struggle unfolds in Libya.

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