February 23rd, 2011:

Heartfelt Wishes for Freedom & Peace for Libya!

There are places in the world that touch our hearts for one reason or another. For me, Tripoli, Libya is one of those places. Libya is going through a tragic upheaval as the people give their lives to rid themselves of a despot.

When my family lived in Tripoli from 1955 to 1958, it was a beautiful ancient city along the shores of the Mediterranean. Tripoli’s history dated to the Phoenicians and the Romans. In that part of the world, layers of history remain, some standing and some buried. In the coming days and weeks, it will be fascinating to see what present-day Libyans will create as they shake off the old and create another new world.

The boulevard along Tripoli Harbor

Life seems to go in circles; that’s been my experience. When I started my blog last spring, I had no idea where it would lead me. I had lots to write about since I grew up an Army brat in various areas of the world, and I’ve had some interesting adventures as a journalist and author.

I was lucky enough to have written a high school term paper about my time in Tripoli and fortunate enough to have kept it all these years to remind me. It offered great material to share with readers. My Tripoli experience has been a gift for me, a gift that keeps on giving. I’m reconnected, thanks to the Internet, to nearly all my classmates from Wheelus Air Force Base high school, and also to many other former American students who lived in Libya who are both older and younger than me. I’ve also heard from airmen who were stationed at Wheelus and they’ve never forgotten their time there.

I hardly imagined I would actually meet a Libyan, but now I’m connected to a former Libyan resident, Mahmud Abudaber, who escaped from Tripoli to avoid Gaddafi’s military draft in 1980. Until recently, Mahmud, who has a huge family in the Tripoli area, had nearly given up on the possibility that Libya would ever push its heartless dictator out of power.

When North Africa erupted with freedom fever in Egypt, Mahmud started to hope that Libya might join in. He wrote a poem, which I am printing here, and established a web site to share the latest Libyan news: www.gaddafiduck.com

Now he’s getting even more serious; he’s going to sew a Libyan flag using the Libyan symbols from the Kingdom era. He’ll fly it over his Los Angeles home in the hills. Mahmud is making plans to fly to Tripoli as soon as Libya completes its transition, and Gaddafi is old news. What will he do there? Set up a film studio (He used to do music videos). Mahmud lives in the Hollywood Hills, of course.

Libya O’ Libya

Angry from losing our peaceful Kingdom

To a bloodthirsty thief of our freedom.

Gaddafi – that filthy name means turmoil.

We watched him steal our democracy and oil,

We said enough & our blood started to boil.

Brave Libyans are rioting, wave after wave,

Lined up, we can’t wait to piss on his grave.

He’ll be cornered & won’t get off our hook,

Burn him over the bonfire of his Green Book.

Libya O’ Libya, to hell with our Dick-tator,

Choke his sons like a dying carburetor,

Poison to him & to his daughter a vibrator.

Fighting evil, whatever will be will be,

Revenge time, we’ll avenge you, Lockerbie.

There are Americans still in Libya. My blog and Mahmud led me to Teri, a Florida native, who lives on a farm near Tripoli with her kids and Libyan husband. She’s been writing a blog for several years: www.khadijateri.blogspot.com

Teri keeps her readers informed about her experiences in Libya and what’s been happening lately in the midst of turmoil.

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