Acting Prime Minister Mahmoud Jibril has announced today that Col Muammar Gaddafi was taken alive, but died of bullet wounds minutes before reaching hospital.
Already videos of him asking for mercy are all over the web.
Photos of his bloodied corpse.
Photos of his hiding place with captions that make fun of him.
I’ve watched from afar as he played out his often deadly and heartbreaking whims on his people. And sometimes on the peoples of other nations.
It saddens me that once again potential became the sword of tragedy.
Gaddafi – although his opponents would have you believe different – was not a stupid man. As the leader of Libya he had the possibility to do great things. Great things for his people, great things for his country.
Libya is in the top 10 countries for proven oil resources.
In the 1980’s Libya was one of the wealthiest countries in the world, and its GDP per capita was better than New Zealand’s.
While Libya has problems with poor quality soil for agriculture and access to drinking water (a problem being addressed after the search for oil discovered huge aquifers of fresh water), Gaddafi had the opportunity to make Libya a great nation.
Instead, like so many others who battle the pull of corruption and lose, Gaddafi built himself an empire on the blood and broken bones of his people.
Today the people of Libya have within their grasp freedoms they not so long ago never expected to see. Many ordinary citizens of that land died in the pursuit of those freedoms.
It seems to me much wrongdoing and immorality comes from greed, and the need to control others.
Dominance and its evil are out there in so many forms. From the domestic arena, where one partner holds another captive through to the likes of Gaddafi. They do it all through the installation of fear in their victims.
Yet it remains a false power. For true power can only arise when it comes from a place of love and trust. Without those, it will always crumble and disintegrate. Yes – it may take time. But crumble it will.
With each dereliction of the duty that comes with power, the foundation, that these despots from all walks of lives have built for themselves, weakens. They ignore their responsibilities – the very things that serve to strengthen bonds between themselves and others.
And because they are blind to their own actions, days such as today happen. Days when false power is brought down and people can begin to rebuild their lives.
On days like today – I celebrate that for once the good guys are winning, but I mourn the capacity that exists within us as a species that makes days like today necessary at all.