By Shuting Xia, on 2 December 2016
Written by Zeidon Alkinani
One always wonders whether the Arab Spring was more of a period of lessons or achievements? It only took one angry and poor Tunisian man committing suicide as a retain of dignity from authoritarianism, to awaken people against the inequality they were living in. The revolutionary determination was regionally present, due to the autocratic regimes that offered nothing but social, political and economic inequality through corruption, low living standards and restricting freedom of expression. Although I am not implying that the Arab Spring was a failure, it is important to highlight the mistakes, which weakened the democratic progress or at least the reduction of corruption in Arab states.
There is no doubt that the Libyan NTC (National Transitional Council) would have struggled to face Muammar Gaddafi’s bloody response towards the Libyan protests since February 2011, if it was not for its international influence and massive support via media coverage, legitimate political bodies and the militarisation of Libyan rebel groups. The NATO-backed NTC was Libya’s de facto government during and after its war for almost a year. Despite the Tunisian and Egyptian achievements, crises such as the ones in Libya and Syria leave the ‘success’ of the Arab Spring open to question. Was removing Gaddafi all that mattered? What about the territorial division and disputes that occurred after the war? Does the NTC or the new upcoming Libyan government, who is most likely to be post anti-Gaddafi, have enough experience and tools to rebuild a state and restructure its institutions and constitution after demolishing them? These concerns are still active today, and Libya has witnessed no successful progress since the events happened. In fact, Libya has turned from an authoritarian regime to a country which seeks a disarmament programme from the overwhelming number of armed groups who have been violently monopolising their self-interests across the country since 2011.