ModernityBlog

“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

Jumping Ship And Provisional Governments.

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Apart from the chaos that’s going on in Libya, I noticed two bits which are telling.

Apparently, Gaddafi’s own private pilot has deserted:

“The pilot of Moammar Ghaddafi’s private jet, a Norwegian citizen, has been able to flee Libya with his family. They are now safe in Vienna after fearing for their lives in Libya.

57-year-old Odd Birger Johansen for the last year has been the pilot of the private jet of Colonel Ghaddafi. Until yesterday, he was in Tripoli, together with his wife and daughter that had chosen this unhappy moment to visit him for a holiday in Libya.

Yesterday, he spoke to the private Norwegian broadcaster ‘TV2’, saying he wanted to evacuate Libya as soon as possible. “Right now, the way I feel it, is that things are burning around me … and I don’t want to … I am not a hero, I will go home,” Mr Johansen told the broadcaster. “

Else where, they are setting up a provisional government:

“In eastern Libya, in the city of Bayda, a provisional government was being formed. The new leadership also is holding some Gadhafi loyalists hostage.

As the first Western journalists many of the residents of Bayda had ever seen were led into the meeting, the crowd gave a standing ovation — quickly followed by cries of “Freedom, Freedom!” and “Libya, Libya!”

This building had been a symbol of Gadhafi’s regime — where his revolutionary council would meet to discuss local affairs.

A new revolution was finding its voice in Bayda, and its fighters were vowing to end Gadhafi’s reign. Some people were crying, others pumping their fists in the air.

“Ordinary people, doctors, lawyers are talking about how we can coordinate with all other cities in Libya who are now under the protesters’ control,” says Ahmed Jibril, a former diplomat at the Libyan mission at the United Nations.

He says this is the beginning of a new government.

“We have a former minister of justice who just resigned three or four days ago,” Jibril says. “He’s among us and people agreed … he would be one of the people in control.” “

Update 1: Frank Gardner piece at the Beeb, Libya: Who is propping up Gaddafi is good.

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