Last Sunday, the president of South Africa and several other African leaders met with Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi to talk to him about a “ceasefire” which would stop the fighting. They called the plan a “roadmap to peace.” They asked the countries that are helping the rebels to stop their attacks on Gadhafi’s targets in order to give the peace plan a chance to succeed.
The African leaders are travelling to eastern Libya to talk to the rebels about the plan, but so far the rebels are saying they will not stop fighting and they will never give up. They believe Gadhafi only understands total destruction, so they must fight his violence with violence of their own. They also say the current plan would allow Gadhafi and his sons to stay in power, and the rebels cannot accept that.
Gun and rocket attacks by government forces are making life harder and harder for the rebels. Although much of Gadhafi’s armour and ammunition have been destroyed, he is still strong.
Gadhafi’s two public appearances in the past five days have led some experts to say that he is probably preparing for a long war. There may be a new roadmap, but in this country few seem ready to follow it to peace.
Other Arab Countries – Roundup
The situation in Egypt is very different from the situation in Libya. A month ago, the people of the country forced President Hosni Mubarak to leave the capital city. They did it by protesting peacefully in the main square of Cairo.
Even though the army came out to make sure the protests were orderly, they didn’t stop the protests. Mubarak finally left, to go and live in one of his other homes with his family. Later, he was accused of stealing money that belonged to the people of Egypt and was arrested by the army. Last Sunday Mubarak did a special broadcast to say that he did not steal any money and that the police could look at all his properties and bank accounts if they didn’t believe him. While being questioned by police, Mubarak, who is 82 years old, had a heart attack and is now in the hospital. His two sons are also being questioned.
Two other countries in the Middle East—Syria and Yemen—are in a civil war or on the verge of one because the people don’t believe in their leaders any more. There are protests and fighting.
The article states, “They [the rebels] believe Gadhafi only understands total destruction, so they must fight his violence with violence of their own.”
Do you think violence fighting against violence can lead to peace?
Can you think of any examples in your own life when two ‘wrongs’ made a ‘right’?
Compare the situation in Egypt to that in Libya. (If you would like some more background information, you can look at our previous articles on both Libya and Egypt. Use the Search Engine on our site or look in Related Links following the article.).
Why do you think the Egyptian people chose not to fight against Mubarak with violence? Why do you think the rebels in Libya did not choose to follow Egypt’s example?
Use stated and implied ideas in texts to make inferences and construct meaning (OME, Reading: 1.5).
Develop and explain interpretations of increasingly complex or difficult texts using stated and implied ideas from the texts to support their interpretations (OME, Reading: 1.5).
Grammar Feature: Compound Words
Compound words are two words that are joined together. One example is roadmap (road and map are joined together). See if you can find any other compound words in the article. Then brainstorm a list of at least 10 compound words.