Qadaffi's corpse on display in market freezer used for vegetables, onions

One wonders if a trial for crimes against humanity might have been a little more dignified—not because the deceased deserved it, but because the living deserved something better than perpetuation of the cycle of gore, brutality, and dehumanization. From Arab News:

In Misrata, residents crowded into long lines to get a chance to view the body of Qaddafi, which was laid out on a mattress on the floor of an emptied-out vegetable and onions freezer at a local shopping center. The body had apparently been stowed in the freezer in an attempt to keep it out of the public eye, but once the location was known, that intention was swept away in the overwhelming desire of residents to see the man they so deeply despised. Men, women and children filed in to take their picture with the body. The site’s guards had even organized separate visiting hours for families and single men.

“We want to see the dog,” some chanted.

Qaddafi’s 69-year-old body was stripped to the waist, his torso and arms streaked with dried blood. Bullet wounds in the chest, abdomen and left side of the head were visible.

(via @nytjim)

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  1. The cynical side of me suggests that his execution was more about shutting him up so that he couldn’t tell what he knew in a trial rather than any kind of revenge. 

  2. Eh. We did the same thing 100 years ago in the US. Except without refrigeration. Plenty of pictures of people posing with outlaws, all shot up and gory.

    We live in a very unusual time, where death is hidden away from us, or sanitized into nothing much at all. The vast majority of people, for the vast majority of human history, would be doing the same exact thing – being sure the local despot is really dead, and then celebrating it.

    I wouldn’t join the parade (it’s a bit macabre) but in comparison with what went on while this guy was alive, this is just a sideshow.

  3.   They hung Mussolini by his ankles from a lamp post for a day or so…  I guess this is an improvement.

  4. Don’t like that kind of spectacle, but I’m not Libyan. Were I, I’d be more interested in how to get back the tens, perhaps hundreds, of billions that squirrel hid around the world.

  5. I suppose to a Western observer with middle class sensibilities, these proceedings may seem undignified.  To others, there is perhaps nothing undignified about onions, freezers, shopping centers, or historic photos of the glad occasion.  Maybe every moment not spent defiling the corpse of this brutal oppressor demonstrates a genuine forebearance from the Libyan people, one which will serve them well as they take their first awkward steps toward democracy.

    Still, how very generous of you to imagine for them a standard of dignity apparently beyond their current means, and actually counter to their current desires.

    1. Still, how very generous of you to imagine for them a standard of dignity apparently beyond their current means, and actually counter to their current desires.

      Thank you for reminding us that we shouldn’t pass up an opportunity to congratulate them for not chopping him up. I suppose to a Westerner with middle class sensibilities this kind of condescension is natural.

  6. Why does the headline say that he is “in freezer between vegetables, onions”, when the article says “an emptied-out vegetable and onions freezer”?

  7. I’ve always been impressed with the way we treat our ex-Presidents.  It’s one of the things the U.S. gets right.

    In other news, Bashar al-Assad of Syria has decided there is no way in hell he is ever leaving office.  He was last seen frozen in his chair, silently mouthing the words “over my dead body”.

    Also: The Cook, The Dictator, His Wife and Her NATO Lover.

  8. Who on earth freezes onions? Even in a desert they must stay fresh for a couple of weeks after harvest. 

    1. Your kids don’t like frozen onions on a stick?  I thought everybody knew that these were a great warm weather treat.  

  9. “but because the living deserved something better than perpetuation of the cycle of gore, brutality, and dehumanization.”

    He decided the fate of the Libyan people for decades – they are more than fit to decide his. It’s always easy to suggest people “break the cycle” when you’re standing across an ocean living above the poverty line.

    EDIT: A Qaddafi-ruled country is the only Libya most of the people in this video have ever known. The society that he manipulated for so long has chosen to end the dear leader’s life by the very methods he so loved. I’m not going to try and debate whether or not this incident is “poetic;” but I find it hard to believe anyone would argue against it’s inevitability.

  10. I am also against any inocent civilians to be killed at any part of the world. Unfortunately the people in Benghazi who were killed, they were provoked by US and their allies to stand against their own government and rebel against their own state which was for the interests of US and their allies and sadly these poor people had to be killed and the benefits and interests would be enjoyed by US and their allies. They did this not to help the people of Benghazi but they did just for their own interests and to achieve their own political goals.

    Have a look into this article which reflects the clear picture of US and their allies hyporcacy.

    http://blogs.aljazeera.net/africa/2011/10/21/gaddafi-love-ends

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