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A Brief Look at Post-Colonial Libya Essay example

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Libya’s post-colonial narrative is a complicated one that has led Libya to become a relatively prosperous African country with a better standard of living than it had before; yet, Libya remains rife with political chaos following the assassination of its 42-year dictator, Muammar Gaddafi, by rebel groups. In its history, Libya became an Italian colony in 1912, but was declared as an independent state in 1951 by the United Nations. On December 24, 1951, King Mohammed Idris al-Senussi was chosen by a national assembly to become the first and only monarch of the newly independent United Kingdom of Libya. Then, after a military coup on September 1, 1969, Gaddafi overthrew King Idris’ regime and came into power. Since then, Libya has developed into a relatively wealthy African nation and is faring better than it had been during its colonial years. However, political unrest and violence is widespread throughout Libya today. Libya's post-colonial narrative is a two-sided one: its relatively prosperous state was shaped by a combination of interconnected internal and external pressures, including the limitations of its natural environment, the reforms of its post-colonial rulers, as well as its interactions with other countries; meanwhile, its current social-political chaos developed from internal dissatisfaction with Gaddafi’s dictatorial regime and a wide range of conflicting political opinions among Libyan citizens.
The physical limitations of Libya’s environment have long been an internal obstacle in the way of Libya’s development. As stated by David Lamb in The Africans:
Some of Africa’s problems—especially those caused by forces other than man—are so enormous, so constant, that a people of lesser spirit long since would have succumb...


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...on of both internal and external pressures: Libya’s relative prosperity came about due to the Libyans’ effective solutions to coping with their harsh natural environment, the successful reforms of its rulers, and the lucrative, as well as essential, trade that Libya had with other nations. Meanwhile, Libya’s social-political chaos can be attributed to political unrest within the country, the dissatisfaction of some Libyans with Gaddafi, and the problems that arose following his death. Libya’s post-colonial narrative is significant because it is still a developing country, and events that occur in Libya may indirectly affect many in today’s interconnected world. The stability of Libyan exports, especially oil, can have a great impact on oil prices throughout the world, and thus, the continuation of Libya’s two-sided post-colonial narrative is one to pay attention to.



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