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  • on 31.07.2014
  • at 03:00 PM
  • by Kevin Hind

Libya is fast following Somalia’s road to ruin 0

With Gaza, Ukraine and Iraq dominating the news, nobody is paying much attention to the violence in Tripoli that is swiftly tipping Libya over the edge. The UN and US have withdrawn and the UK have ordered all British nationals out. Yet, the repercussions of losing Libya are monumental, especially for Europe.

After twenty-three years searching for salvation, Somalia is taking little steps towards recovery. Sadly, all the signs show that Libya is following Somalia’s route to disaster as the country plunges backwards into a conflict so complex it could take decades to fix. The similarities with what went wrong in Somalia and what is now going wrong in Libya are there for all to see but we appear powerless to stop it.

In Libya today, social cohesion and trust are dangerously fragmenting on a geographic, tribal and religious basis in the midst of a multi-dimensional battle – all underpinned by the power and influence of oil.

With the loss of trust comes ever greater insecurity, the collapse of politics and governance. Violent conflict and quickly thereafter economic stagnation follows. In a short space of time, a once stable society deteriorates into anarchy and looming poverty, like a cartoon character falling through the floors of a high-rise building.

Libya’s oil reserves and their potentially enormous value lie at the heart of everything that has happened since the revolution; perverting and corrupting all reason and logic in a country that had everything it needed to flourish. Becoming the Dubai of North Africa was entirely within their grasp. But oil has lubricated the greasy pole of politics and the funnel down which the nation now spirals.

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By Richard BaileyAfrican Arguments

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