It all began when a young Tunisian man became tired of being abused by authority and within weeks the fever of democracy spread to Egypt. Now, petty tyrants like Gaddafi in Libya and benevolent rulers like the King of Morocco are confronted by crowds of angry people demanding basic rights. In Rabat, they cried that the “king must reign, not rule.” In Libya they want an end to the one man rule of Gaddafi, the man who is quick to denounce Israel or the West but refuses to acknowledge his own tyranny. Hundreds of people in Libya already have been killed and even more hundreds wounded since in this country we do as the Big Man says. Gaddafi’s son, Saif al-Islam warned the population that Libya “is not Egypt , it is not Tunisia.” In this country, as he so aptly put it, “there are not political parties.” The only thing allowed to express an opinion is either the Man himself or one of his lackeys. He went on to warn those involved in demonstrations they would be regarded as enemy agents.
Israel is among the few democratic nations in the region. What a wonderful opportunity for Israel leaders to announce they are ready to work with Palestinian leaders and support these democratic ventures. Unfortunately, Israel has Avigdor Lieberman rather than Martin Luther King or Nelson Mandela as leaders who had vision of a democratic future.