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Every statement contained in my article "A Wolf in Sheep's Clothing" is the truth. Every sentence of Ali Errishi's article "An Unpleasant Obligation" is devoted to the claim that I lied. But where are his substantiated refutations? There are none. Why? Because no legitimate refutations can be made. Everything in my article is true. And in your letter you do not even attempt to substantiate your claims, other than to say that I lied. Well, if I lied, then what is the truth? You can't say, because that would expose you for what you really are: an agent, whether by hire or by fiat, of the Qaddafi regime. Like other corrupt lowlifes in the Third World, you use misappropriated religious warnings and imprecations to hide your treachery. You consider yourself too high and mighty to bother defending yourself in any real way. Your entire strategy is to accuse me of lying. You have no defense other than that.

Your definition of "fascism" is utterly ludicrous. Common sense alone demonstrates that Qaddafi and his henchmen are the fascists--not Libyan freedom fighters. And the bottom feeders who suck up to Qaddafi's regime are fascists by association, if not by direct action. How heartless do you have to be to support a Satanic regime like Qaddafi's? How heartless do you have to be to remain blasť and complacent in the face of such a regime? Have you no humanity at all? How can so-called men like Dorda and others who prop up the Qaddafi regime be so inhumane and demented? Profit is the only answer. They are thugs who lack a conscience, and their only concern is personal survival and profit--no matter what the expense. They are treasonous toward what should be the ideals of a civilized country--to what Libya could be without this heinous regime.

Dorda recited the following atrocity : "Libya is a better example of democracy, not the ridiculous model of the United States." How can we take a statement like that seriously?

Regarding the videotape of Errishi's 1973 speech at Mujamma Sulaiman Durat, a sports arena in Benghazi, his political statements were broadcast live by Libyan Television. The entire nation saw him and heard what he had to say. Ask any Libyan who saw this event and they will confirm the veracity of what I have said. Of course the videotape is retrievable, but this is not even remotely necessary. This is because so many people saw it and remember it. I reiterate: Speaking directly to Qaddafi and the rest of the nation, Errishi said that he was ready to "dig up the ground" with his own fingers for the cause of the so- called Revolution. He added that he was ready to get on his knees to the Revolution and lick the feet of the revolutionary (i.e., Qaddafi himself). These statements are widely known because the great majority of people living in Libya 28 years ago saw and heard him speak these words on television.

Errishi claims that we have the luxury of ignoring him and that by doing so we can "keep up the good fight." But we do not have this luxury. Everyone who supports the Qaddafi regime is an enemy of the Libyan people. Errishi's self-characterization as one who is complacent, ambivalent and apathetic about the Qaddafi regime is nothing but pretense.

The devastation and rape of our beloved Libya has not been accomplished by one person alone. No dictator can dictate without the collusion of a handful of opportunists who profit from the continuation of corruption.

It's despicable to see acting oil minister Abdul Karim begging United States oil companies to return to Libya entirely on their own terms. This unpatriotic, treasonous begging proves that the state of Libya is nothing more than land confiscated by Qaddafi. As long as he receives a sufficient share of the spoils, he is willing to just give it away to U.S. megacorporations. This business deal has utterly no aim of seeking any advantages for the Libyan people, who are the ones who should benefit from it. This typical form of collusion between the U.S. and Third World dictators is repulsive. If this deal occurs, the United States will become accomplices in Qaddafi's criminality by propping up the regime of a dictator whose only purpose, like many before him, is to maintain power and gather kickbacks--in this case, from big American business. Karim's fawning invitation was announced not in Libya, of course, but in Vienna on June 5, 2001. Qaddafi will serve up a plate piled high with misinformation for the Libyan people to consume. He is the master of all imposters and swindlers.

The ugly emergence of this potential oil deal highlights the dangerous period we are entering in Libyan-Western relations. For the last few years, Qaddafi has been on a sickening campaign to legitimize himself with the West. Qaddafi might as well say, "I'm not so bad. We have democracy here. Come and do business with us." These are the pleas of a desperate man who knows that he has very little time left, who knows that his power is waning.

Qaddafi is circuitously sending messages to the U.S. through highly placed channels, from the Philippines to Nigeria. He is begging the U.S. for re-entry into the respected circles of Western economic and political legitimacy. The Lockerbie dilemma poses a great threat to Qaddafi's survival. He is buying time with extension after extension to delay the appeal of the case. If he is implicated in the international court of law, his regime may face an opponent that could end his reign of terror altogether. He fears that he will suffer the same fate as Milosevic and Pinochet. Furthermore, Lockerbie is not the only crime that poses a dilemma for Qaddafi. There are a number of other crimes for which he is responsible. Qaddafi is a career criminal. Moreover, the most flagrant crimes of his regime have been committed against the Libyan people, against their heritage, resources, and even their sovereignty.

Qaddafi is a frightened mouse about the crimes he has committed against the world, but he has no fear regarding the crimes he has committed against the Libyan people, because he thinks that those pursuing him for these transgressions are less dangerous and more manageable. He is totally mistaken. He is being pursued, and he will be overthrown.

Remaining silent, apathetic and unhelpful in these times, which are some of the most dangerous for Libya, is a crime in and of itself. Mr. Errishi, you make it sound as if the "good fight" is ours alone to fight. Why is it not yours as well? Your silence speaks volumes. Your latest response says nothing. It is vapid language passing from the empty into the void.

Faris El-lafi

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