The former President of France, Nicholas Sarkozy has been arrested for allegedly taking millions of Euros in campaign donations from Libya’s former revolutionary leader Muammar Gaddafi. Sarkozy’s first and only election victory in 2007, was said to be handsomely financed by Gaddafi after France became a commercial partner of the Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya.
In 2011, it was Sarkozy who became the public face of a war against Libya which ultimately saw the NATO sponsored terrorist assassination of Gaddafi in the most cruel way imaginable. In hindsight, Sarkozy’s desire to make it so that a dead man would not tell a tale, may have been a substantial motivating factor propelling Sarkozy’s enthusiasm for the anti-Libyan NATO war which has transformed Libya from the most prosperous nation in African history to a failed state built upon the world’s largest terrorist training camp.
While Gaddafi could not escape NATO’s aggression, Sarkozy seems unable to escape the reality that his only election victory was funded by a ‘friend’ he later turned against and conspired to murder.
On this same day, the arrogant chairmen of the data harvesting organisation Cambridge Analytica, as well as the CEO of Facebook are facing increased calls for scrutiny from those they once considered their allies – the corporate and political elite of the US and UK. Meanwhile, Donald Trump is mired in a very real Watergate like scandal involving his procurement of Cambridge Analytica’s services, who in the process of meddling in the US election, used the stolen data of 50 million Facebook users.
Both Trump and Sarkozy exude an arrogant confidence, overt narcissism and an odd self assuredness which betrays the fact that as they continued to govern, both men appeared increasingly incapable and politically vulnerable. By contrast, Muammar Gaddafi was a man of vision who transformed his country in a few short decades from a barren desert to a place where the fresh water flowed from a man made river, literacy was near universal, homelessness was non-existent, food was cheap and plentiful and even personal transportation was frequently subsidised by the government.
Gaddafi was generous not only to his own people, but to liberation struggles throughout the world, most notably the struggle against Apartheid in South Africa and the struggle for Palestinian freedom. Sometimes, Gaddafi’s generosity went too far and he gave freely to those he should have thought twice about giving to. There are several examples, but none is more stark than the case of Nicolas Sarkozy, a man who repaid Gaddafi’s famous generosity with death.
For Trump, a man who once boasted that he could shoot a man in the street and still win an election, it turns out he nevertheless sought help from a devious foreign organisation that may well have employed “Israeli” spies to meddle in the US political system. Had Trump really been as confident as he claimed to be, he would have contested the election without seeking external aid.
As the very elite organisations of France and in the case of Trump, those in both the US and Britain close in against their nefarious activities, it is wise to remember that true leadership is about vision, not about graft, corruption and a fake confidence designed to hide insufficiencies.
When contrasted with Trump and Sarkozy, Gaddafi’s story is one of triumph for his nation followed by betrayal on the part of those he trusted the most. For Sarkozy and Trump, their own betrayal of anything resembling ethics and transparency is slowly catching up with both of them. In this sense, perhaps Gaddafi has had the last laugh after all.