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After Gaddafi: tableau

A picture poem on Gaddafi's fall

The last view Gaddafi took of this world? 

what will be the last view Gaddafi takes of this world?

which way up?

which way down? 

what will be our last view of him?

the anti-colonial guerilla fighter hero he associated with Omar al Mukhtar - Lion of the Desert - hung in 1931 by the Italian fascist colonial regime under Benito Mussolini (Gaddafi wore the last photograph of Mukhtar alive just before his execution as a badge on his military uniform when visiting Silvio Berlusconi in Italy in 2009)


the ruthless dictator Benito Mussolini, as captured by Italian Partisans in 1945, when he tried to flee to Switzerland, and was executed on the spot, hung by his feet 

the flag of his copy cat green revolution waved for four decades

the regime he helped create repressed as many people as it did bind to its peculiar form of commonwealth 

despised and embraced at the same time by other leaders from other countries who drew their plans for his removal while celebrating their meetings with him

those from his own camp, who now leave him to face up to his last days will trample on his face to hide their own past

will his court be in the streets or in The Hague?

there will be no singular view of Gaddafi

as with all dictators both his face

and the way we see it

is split

About the author

Tjebbe van Tijen was curator of the department for the documentation of “modern social movements” at the University of Amsterdam and in the International Institute of Social History.

He works as a multi-media artist under the name Imaginary Museum, making interactive installations to dramatise history. He now works for the School of Creative Media at the City University of Hong Kong developing a visual narrative education system'.

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