Some citizens interviewed by Al-Monitor said that the early celebrations of the revolution anniversary are arguably a poor indication of positive security or political developments in the transition. Likewise, some said the mood was not a good indication of any improvements in or resolution of the divide between the Eastern and Western regions of the country.
"During a time like this, people identify with Libya (as a whole), but underlying that there’s an East-West current where people from the East seem themselves on the other side of the fence from the Westerners,” said a young doctor from Tripoli who has family from both the Eastern and Western regions of the country and asked for his name not to be used given the sensitivity of the issue.
“In the revolution, the East-West rift wasn’t important,” the doctor said. “People don’t forget how they came together to fight Gadhafi, but now they have gone back to the old issues. After the revolution, these divisions exist because they have been here for 42 years,” he said.
Whether this and other rifts among Libyans will be mended in the “new Libya” remains to be seen, but the transitional government has not yet proven effective in building the core institutions that the country needs to move forward.
Maggie Fick is a freelance journalist based in Cairo, Egypt.