Week 7

November 19, 2014

The first article I read was “ISIS comes to Libya.” From the article, I learned that ISIS is in complete control over the city Derma. These IS members are taking advantage of the political chaos to expand their powers. The IS presence in Libya has been blamed on the return of Libyan Jihadists who were part of the ISIS al Battar Brigade, which was deployed in Syria and Iraq. This group is beheading anti-islamists in the local football stadium and all over the city. This was interesting to me because it reminds me that terrorism is a challenge to national security, even United States security. After reading this article, I am more concerned about the growing number of hopeless Libyans who are joining radical extremist groups. This growing number could pose significant threats.

The second article I read was a personal account of the 2011 uprising in Libya. In the article, “Alex Owumi: I played basketball for Gaddafi,” Owumi describes his experience playing basketball for Gaddafi. He explains how extravagent his own apartment (his couch was plated in gold), and the excessive compensation he would receive just for “winning.” However, if his team lost, Gaddafi’s security would beat them. Owumi did not really see the injustices around him until the starting of the uprising. He witnessed countless murders in the street, the kids he used to play with holding rebel AK-47s, and the little girl he taught English to getting raped by a soldier. He began to starve , so he started eating roaches and drinking toilet water. This is just a snapshot of what he experienced. I liked reading this story because it was a more personal account on what someone experienced during the uprising. For Owumi, his wealth did not matter when the country was in turmoil. The gold on his couch could not feed him when he was locked in his apartment. I wonder if military intervention in this case would cause more harm than good, or if it is justified.

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