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How People Power Achieved What The Libyan Government Could Not

(and nobody lead with THAT story)

As previously outlined in Why #MuslimRage Matters, in the past 10 days the "Clash of Civilizations" (?!) message conveyed on mainstream media exists in sharp contrast with the dialogue seen on social media. Yesterday, during the #SaveBenghazi and #LibyaPeace protests some reporters were actually present as the event had been planned for days. CNN, Al Jazeera and the BBC had crews in the thick of things and I was told by Tripoli organiser Khadija Ali, that some french freelancers also attended. However, the next day protests in Pakistan (a few hundred people), the flopped protests in Parisagainst the Charlie Hebdo cartoons (nobody showed up due to a ban on protesting) and a dubiously relevant press release by the Free Syrian Army stating they would be moving HQ from Turkey to Syria made MSM headlines. Why would the press turn from this momentous Libya event? Where there's a gap there will be people. This seems to be the new reality in Arab Spring countries. In Libya, this gap was national security and the political clout of individual militias. 30 000 unarmed citizens investing the streets, re-possessing their city, ousting freewheeling militia: Islamic extremist militias to boot. A coup experts feared the new government could not achieve, save perhaps with US military might. Wouldn't this time, this incredible human feat be something a global audience would want to know about, something that could inspire? Being able to capture the people driven narrative will definitely be a major challenge in the future, especially when smart TV's will enable spectators to pick what is important to them, and share it with their contacts in realtime. But perhaps by then we'll not be discussing the US elections, candidates who shy away from foreign policy, or the "Clash of Civilizations" anymore...

Context and consequences of People Power in Benghazi & Tripoli, Libya.

To explore the events which led up to last night's storming of the Ansar Al Sharia and other brigades by unarmed protestors, here a few random thoughts from activists, journalists and citizens ...

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