The Arabist

The Arabist

By Issandr El Amrani and friends.

Seif Qadhafi's Comeback


From Flickr user Miles_78.

Al Sharq al-Awsat brings some clarification about the recent nomination of Seif al-Islam Qadhafi to a post that would bring him, legally at least, much control over Libya's institutions - Saif al-Islam to Decide on Nomination Soon:

"Saif-al-Islam withdrew suddenly from the political and public life in Libya last year in what appeared to be a setback for his plan to bring about radical changes in the Libyan state at the political and economic levels. Col. Al-Qadhafi proposed to the institutions in Libya in an official speech last week, which the official media did not report, to enable his son to occupy an official post so that he can continue and implement his reform program and the social leaderships immediately nominated his son as their chairman.

Seif's appointment, should he accept it (I can't imagine he won't), contrasts with the public visibility of his brother Muatassim over the last year. Ever since it was leaked that Muatassim has been getting help from American lobbying firms in not only reaching the ears of prominent Western politicians and academics, but also in setting up the National Security Council that he allegedly runs. The leaks revealed Muatassim was hardly impressive, requiring much coaching, although his money and lobbyists did buy him a photo-op with Hillary Clinton. Should we read into this that Seif, who had earlier overreached, is back as designated successor after his eclipse over the past year? Was it his brother's disgrace alone that did the trick, or did Seif have something to do with the liberation of Abdel Basset al-Meghrahi which so overjoyed his father? If any readers have a theory about this, do let us know.

Do read the rest of the article, which speculates that Seif's return aux affaires may give a boost to the ongoing reconciliation with Libya's Salafists.