Ten months ago, a Tunisian vegetable vendor set himself ablaze after being treated disrespectfully by a member of the police force. No one could have predicted that Mohammed Bouazizi’s single act of martyrdom would spark perhaps the most cataclysmic ten months that the Middle East has ever seen, with dictators forcefully deposed and endless bloody uprisings shattering cities.
In the cases of Tunisia, Egypt and Libya, despots were removed from government in ways as undignified as the lives they subjected their people to. But clearly the most indecorous of the three was Gaddafi’s ousting – his bloodied corpse being paraded through the streets of Sirte after being killed in crossfire yesterday. It is not as though he was deserving of a humane unseating, but the jollity with which the news of his death has been received and the decision of all major television networks to broadcast these gruesome images may have gone too far in the other direction. Continue reading