By and large, the world was certainly glad to see the Bush administration out the door, but one particular population sub-cohort was not. (I mean besides Halliburton, Blackwater and their ilk.) Don’t tell me you don’t know who that was – it’s not as if political comedians’ grief over losing their best source of creative material was not covered extensively both in the on-line and the dead-tree press. I have good news for the yuk-meisters, though: while they and you and I recently had our attention occupied by the struggle to get the $900 billion stimulus bill through Congress (little prospect for laughs there), the African Union, at its summit in Addis Ababa, installed long-time Libyan strongman Muammar Kadhafi as its president for the next year! That’s at least a year of reprieve for you, guys! Enjoy!
(By the way, go ahead and click that link; it leads you to an English-language article from Voice of America where you can read about, among other things, how most of the African heads-of-state assembled there in Addis Ababa found that they had pressing business to attend to back home that kept them from being present for Kadhafi’s inaugural speech on the summit’s last day.)
Unfortunately, that VOA account does not report the remarks Kadhafi offered later as he went to inspect AU headquarters there in the Ethiopian capital. But our old friend the Flemish newspaper De Standaard has an account of them, which I just happened to trip across while preparing my previous blog-post, below. (SerenDIPity-doo-dah, serenDIPity-ay!) You know those Somali pirates (we’ve followed their exploits here on €S before) who recently got that $3.2 million in cash dropped by parachute that they had been demanding and finally released that Ukrainian-registered freighter filled with some heavy arms and ammunition (including 31 tanks)? Well, it looks like you can forget for a while about asking the AU to do anything about them – Kadhafi is taking them under his wing. While still in Addis Ababa he publicly labeled their hijack hijinks as mere self-defense against “the stingy lands of the West” and then added “it is the defense of food for Somali children.”