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CONTACT: Institute for Public Accuracy (IPA)
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* Gadhafi’s Killing * Bush in Canada, a Challenge to Impunity
WASHINGTON - October 20 - VIJAY PRASHAD, Vijay.Prashad at trincoll.edu
Author of The Darker Nations: A People’s History of the Third World, Prashad said today: “The death of Gadhafi closes a chapter in Libyan history, but it does not settle many open questions for the Libyan people. What, for instance, will be the character of the next Libyan epoch? Gadhafi’s 1969 revolution was an important break with the past, and for the next fifteen years, the experiments in Libya were important for the well-being of the Libyan people. By the 1980s, Gadhafi had come to terms with capitalism and imperialism, and had moved to privatize society and to become a full partner in the emergent war on terror. The revolution of 2011 was against the second Gadhafi, the man of 1988 to the present. What will this new revolution make of the first Gadhafi, the leader of the revolution from 1969 to 1988?” Prashad is the George and Martha Kellner Chair of South Asian History and director of International Studies at Trinity College, Hartford, Conn.
EMIRA WOODS, emira at ips-dc.org, also via Lacy MacAuley, lacy at ips-dc.org
Woods is co-director of Foreign Policy In Focus at the Institute for Policy Studies and recently had an piece titled “Libya Must Shape its Own Future.” She said today: “In a post Gadhafi era, Libyans must move steadfastly towards national reconciliation and healing. A clear challenge will be racial justice after the heightened discrimination of dark-skinned Libyans during this transition. The African Union, the Arab League and people of conscience in Libya and beyond must maintain vigilance on this critical issue.”
ALI AHMIDA, aahmida at une.edu
Available for a limited number of interviews, Ahmida is a leading analyst and historian of Libya. He said today: “This is an end of era. It’s unfortunate that he was not arrested and tried in a fair way. But he continued fighting, really leaving no other option. The challenges now are substantial: How to build a new democratic order, fix the infrastructure of the country. It’s a militarized society that just basically had a civil war — what’s most needed is reconciling and resisting the temptation for revenge.” Ahmida is chair of the department of political science at the University of New England. His books include “The Making of Modern Libya” and “Forgotten Voices: Power and Agency in Colonial and Postcolonial Libya.”
KATHERINE GALLAGHER, via Jen Nessel, press at ccrjustice.org
CNN reports today: “Amnesty International called on Canadian authorities to arrest Bush for ‘war crimes’ while activists announced Occupy Wall Street-style protests of the economic summit in Surrey where the former presidents [Clinton and Bush] were scheduled to speak along with world finance experts.”
Gallagher is a senior staff attorney at the Center for Constitutional Rights, which stated today: “On September 29, the Center for Constitutional Rights and the Canadian Centre for International Justice submitted a 69-page page draft indictment to [Canadian] Attorney General Robert Nicholson, along with more than 4,000 pages of supporting material, setting forth the case against Bush for torture. The indictment, incorporated into the criminal information lodged today, contends that by Bush’s own admission he sanctioned and authorized acts that constitute torture under the Canadian criminal code and the Convention Against Torture.
Gallagher has been working with several plaintiffs who were reportedly tortured on Bush’s orders. She said today: “George Bush’s brazen admission to authorizing torture techniques and unlawful detentions, including enforced disappearances, must not be met with indifference. His years of impunity must come to an end. Even if the United States has failed to meet its obligations to hold torturers accountable, Canada has an opportunity and a legal obligation to position itself on the right side of history and the law.” Gallagher appeared on Democracy Now this morning.