A quick post today: the other day I mentioned the possibility of Qaddafi’s violent repression of protests spreading to other countries. Leaders in Bahrain, Yemen, Iran… have watched the wavering, disorganized responses of Mubarak and Ben Ali result in the end of their regimes. Meanwhile, by turning his military and security apparatus on Libyan people, Qaddafi could possibly survive the challenge to his power. So the question becomes what will others do if Qaddafi succeeds?
Michael Collins Dunn agrees:
As the Libyan government juggernaut moves eastward, apparently willing to use the full weight of modern arms against Libyan citizens, other autocratic regimes will no doubt be watching. This could still result in a long civil war, but events of the past few days suggest that we cannot completely rule out the possibility that Qadhafi will crush the opposition with as much ruthlessness as Saddam used against the Shi‘ite and, until Western intervention, Kurdish revolts in 1991 (or as Syria did in Hama in 1982). Should that happen, many of his fellow autocrats may decide that Tunisia and Egypt were exceptions, and that the old methods still work, despite Twitter, YouTube and Al Jazeera. But I’m not abandoning hope yet.
Photo from Yemen Press