Saif al-Islam Gaddafi’s “plot against Libya” victimhood rhetoric doesn’t seem to be carrying the day. “Gaddafi’s Son: Last Gasp of Libya’s Dying Regime?,” by Vivienne Walt in Time Magazine, February 21:
After the bloodiest few days in Libya’s modern history “” in which over 200 people are estimated to have been killed in clashes with security forces “” the son of the country’s leader Muammar Gaddafi told Libyans on state-run television that “rivers of blood” would flow with “thousands” of deaths if the uprising does not stop. At the same time, he promised a dialogue on new political freedoms and even a new constitution “” the most drastic reforms Libya would undertake since Gaddafi seized power 41 years ago. “There is a plot against Libya,” said the maverick leader’s second son, Saif al-Islam, long regarded as Gaddafi’s heir apparent, speaking after midnight, against a white backdrop showing an abstract map of the region. “The story is very dangerous,” he said, wearing a suit and tie “” a conscious break from his father’s iconic tribal robes. “It is bigger than the Libyans and the young people in the streets, who are trying to imitate Tunisia and Egypt.”
Despite a rambling speech of about 40 minutes, Saif did not explain the most urgent question gripping Libyans late on Sunday night: Where is Gaddafi himself? Rumors swirled around Tripoli late Sunday that Gaddafi “” whose titles are Brotherly Leader and Guide of the Revolution “” might have fled the capital, if not the country, as eastern Libya descended into chaos and massacres. Gaddafi was last seen riding atop a truck in Tripoli on Friday during rallies to support him, in which crowds appeared to celebrate his leadership with posters and chants….