Bye Bye Colonel - Mark Blaisse
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Bye Bye Colonel

Are you soon leaving for Venezuela? Will you flee the country leaving your sons behind to defend what is left of the Qaddafi empire? Or should I say, the Qaddafi circus?  I remember you sitting on a tractor, which you drove yourself. There you came, in a cloud of dust, dressed like a farmer. You wanted to show us, reporters, that you are a tribesman, a Beduin, a simple soul. Ah, your theater, your egocentric PR machine! You were surrounded by female guards, Khalashnikov in hand, sunglasses to hide their beautiful eyes. Yes, you love women, even today, a hobby you share with your dear friend and sponsor Berlusconi. How must he feel, seeing your desperation? Do you care at all?

After the tractor show we met in your famous tent, the one you take everywhere to prove how simple you are, how close to the people (you say you love!).  This tent that is supposed to stand somewhere in the desert, but is -in reality- planted in the security of your military palace. (Why not a single guest of yours ever told the world that the tent is not in the desert but just part of you comedy act stays a mystery.)  But, yes, your tent is just decorum, surrounded by tanks under green nets. You were sweating during our conversation. Your dark green silk shirt turned black. Your face was grey as ash.  Why were you so nervous? You shouted your answers at us. And when we parted I made the big mistake to underestimate you: I asked my cameraman to film the tanks in the corners and your body guards saw it and arrested me. You were so kind to emprison me in my hotel room until the next plane left for Europe. A day or two. No female guards in front of my door, I must admit, but a sleepy man with an old gun.

Colonel, I will remember you as a hunted deer, even then, twenty five years ago. Now you can run, at last. The oil will flow for your people. You can take off your mask. Bye bye.

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