Libya: Shining Example or Dire Warning?

Libya is going shopping for defence equipment, and has $5 billion to spend over the coming year.

Given the size of the country, and the nature of the security challenges it faces, the government will have no difficulty finding homes for that budget, and we welcome the fact that Libya is investing to meet those challenges.

But what sort of society and economy is Libya striving to create and defend?

Hassan El Amin, the chairman of Libya’s parliamentary human-rights committee, has resigned and fled to London, saying the country is run by militias and hooligans.

Bernard-Henri Lévy, the noted French philosopher and author, and a vocal supporter of Libya's pro-democracy movement, has reportedly been barred from entering Libya because of his Jewish faith.

Ezzat Hakim Atallah, an Egyptian Copt, recently died in custody while awaiting trial on a charge of proselytizing.

The international business community will be watching closely to see if the new Libya becomes a shining example or a dire warning to the rest of the region.

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