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Libya (tribal complexity)


Muammar Gaddafi has, for four decades, been at the helm of a country that is described as one of the most intricate tribal nations in the Middle East.

Analysts say most of the major tribes are represented in the military, but Gaddafi has long relied on his own tribe, the Qathafa, to staff elite security brigades

Check the link for the complete video.

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One takeaway for me, here, is to keep in mind the distinctions between the Arab countries when looking at their revolts/rebellions/revolutions. From our Barcalougers, we can look for commonalties, but on the ground, the distinctions matter; tactics that work in WI, for example, might not work in WY, even in though these two American states are far closer culturally than are Libya and, say, Egypt or Turkey.

A second takeaway is that we owe a great deal to the financial class for simplifying our social structures so radically, so that it really is a very great many of "us" against a very few of "them" (and "they" are, to boot, mostly transnational oligarchs). Yes, we have "tribalism" here, but compared to Libya or Yemen, our tribalism is surely faux and, we can hope, increasingly seen as manufactured. It really should be possible to apply to Egyptian strategy of "all walks of life" in this country....