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In order not to repeat the mistakes of the recent past

An Open Letter to the Ladies and Gentlemen and the Distinguished Members of the Libyan Parliament
Friday 10 October 2014



I have already written such a letter to the General National Conference in its first session. However, what I have written was in vain. I am trying to repeat my words now, by writing to you for the second time, so maybe my voice can receive listening ears, therefore we can see some discussion. Therefore, the topic of this letter either will become accepted, rejected or defamed. Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am not going to introduce the details of the proceedings that take place in the land of Libya, you know, more than the rest, what is the current situation of the country and for the people. However, we must remind you that we are witnessing a civil war that has disastrous consequences for the future of the nation. The other thing, which is undoubtable, is the absence of state institutions. All attempts to reconstruct our institutions failed; therefore, our citizens have no hope except your distinguished parliament, which can be described as the incubator of legitimacy. We hope that it will give birth to the legitimacy of the other institutions, organs and bodies in the future. It could serve as the cornerstone in constructing the new state, which is sought by the Libyans.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The legitimacy without authority represented by force will not have any legal obligation on the ground. Any decisions or orders which come out of it will not reach beyond the moral obligation, which will have an effect only on hearts and souls without any real change in the destinies of societies. Therefore, your legitimacy might get the support of the majority of Libyans, and even the recognition of the world, but without power that force everyone to implement its decisions, this legitimacy will no longer be anything except preaching and guidance.

The General National Conference tried to find support in the strength of armed militias, but it was forced to comply with the orders from their leaders and princes; therefore, it failed to acquire binding force. Those militias started using the General National Conference to get whatever they want, and the government, on the other hand, was a captive to this force, through threats and blackmailing, so those militias looted the public money. Those militias, these days, are fighting each other in order to have more control over society and its wealth. We should learn from this lesson so we can prevent ourselves from repeating the mistakes of the past.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The authority of the state and its institutions should be always neutral and take its orders by legitimacy only. This cannot be done without police, army forces, and security institutions. Those institutions, on the other hand, should have no ideology, and should not take sides to any party, sect or tribe, and they should obey only laws and orders of this Legitimacy, which was chosen by people through fair elections.

In Libya, nowadays, we have legitimacy in the form of your distinguished parliament; this legitimacy, however, lacks the power, which is the essence of the authority. On the other hand, there are parties in power without legitimacy, which is represented through those armed militias who are trying to extract this legitimacy so they can destroy the nation.

What is the solution?

You should know, with certainty, that establishing justice, safety, security, development, stability, reconciliation and all other noble intentions, which are aspired to by the Libyan people, cannot be achieved without the establishment of the State. Therefore, your agenda, in the next period, should focus on one item: finding all of the ways that would establish the state. So do not waste your valuable time in any vain attempts. Everyone should find an answer to an urgent question, which is: how can your legitimacy possess the authority through gaining power, and how can this power remain neutral and be above the ideological and societal conflicts so it gains the respect of the citizens?

Whoever reads the current scene of Libya would know for sure that there is no dependable national force; therefore, you should, based on your constitutional responsibilities, take courageous and bold decisions. This might be done through communicating with the Arab League and the African Union in order to get the required assistance in front of the United Nations and the Security Council to bring a UN force to disarm the militias and to form a National army and police. If you are unable to do this, you should know, ladies and gentlemen, that the civil war would continue. You should also know that if Libya lost the opportunity to have a UN intervention, based on patriotic agenda, it would face an unauthorized foreign intervention that puts the entire national territory under the scene of combat operations, based on the claims of the presence of armed militia that are controlling a failed state. We might have another scenario, which is the intervention by neighboring countries based on the problems that they are facing because of the situation in Libya. They might even suggest the idea of ​​annexing some parts of the nation to them, whether it’s under the pretext of creating quiet sectors to protect their national security, or to take over areas of the natural wealth of the country. The wealth of a country that turned into a nation of fighters, who have no time to take advantage of its wealth of development and construction.

In conclusion, I want to say to those who consider that national reconciliation is the solution to the country’s dilemmas: No reconciliation under the presence of guns and fighting. This noble goal would only be achieved after collecting arms and ending the fighting with the help of the international community. Later on, all the workshops, in the development and community peace, would be established.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The task, which you have been elected to, is a sacred one. However, it is very difficult because it needs your composure and self-confidence. Do not be afraid of criminal gangs and those who pretend that they are rebels and represent the Revolution.

mohamed.houni@gmail.com


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