Looking out from the Misrata War Memorial Museum, Libya (Photo)


Photograph by Juan Cole, late May 2012.

View from the Misrata War Memorial Museum, looking across the street.

The Misrata revolutionaries raided Qaddafi’s compound in Tripoli and confiscated the famous sculpture of a fist grasping a US fighter jet, erected after President Ronald Reagan bombed Tripoli and Benghazi in 1986. The Qaddafi memorial falsely claimed that the US had killed his adopted daughter, who is in fact still alive and practicing dentistry in Tripoli. The Misrata revolutionary youth sardonically placed the 1986 statue in front of their own little war memorial museum, erected to commemorate their 2011 battle to be free of Qaddafi’s quixotic tyranny. Looking across Tripoli Avenue in Misrata from the museum, one sees the apartment buildings Qaddafi’s military forces destroyed in their attempt to crush the revolution.

6 Responses

  1. Hah! Reminds me of the group of Irish college students who, after the IRA had bombed Admiral Nelson’s column in Dublin (I think in ’66) found Nelson’s statute’s head in an unguarded warehouse and confiscated it. They sold possession of the head for a week for 200Pds and paid off the debts of their University, they rented it out to people shooting commercials, they took artistic photos of Nelson’s head on a beach staring out to sea. Finally tired of their game I suppose and gave it back to the authorities.

    • Yes, it was in 1966, and it happened before England won the World Cup, so it wasn’t inspired by that particularly moment of national success.

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