On 30thDecember 2006, the world witnessed humiliating hanging of Saddam Hussein, former Iraq’s tyrant, after being arrested bolted in a spider hole. Many thought other dictators would make a note of the sudden and unceremoniously demise and downfall of Saddam. Go figure. They didn’t because of arrogance and faint memories.

In essence, dictators are like goats. When you shout at a goat to stop damaging your garden it thinks this was long time ago. When you shout again, the goat thinks this was yesterday. But when you pick a stone and land it on it, that’s when the goat realizes it is today. This was five years down the line. Just recently in February 2011, two strong men in Egypt and Tunisia were pulled down, not to mention Laurent Gbagbo in the Ivory Coast. Again, other dictators like Col. Muamar Gadaffi who followed six months thereafter, did not take any note, save to ridicule the wave and wind of change.

When Gadaffi, a self-made-king of kings of Africa was asked his views and how domino effects in Egypt and the impact they would have on his country, he dismissively retorted saying that Libya was not Egypt. Therefore, such a thing would not happen to his regime. Little did he know it would happen just within six months!

Now that Libya’s tyrant Gadaffi has fallen from grace quickly and unceremoniously, many would think other waiting potentates would take a note. Their mindsets make them blind and thus do not to see the impending danger that always hovers over their nasty regimes. Are the seating spared of this hallucination and blindness? Nay!

Just like allied forces did to Saddam, Gadaffi was brought down after international forces struck him, especially NATO, that broke the backbone of his regime. Now that Gadaffi’s rule is history, will he and his sons face the same fate Saddam an his stupid kids faced? Will the waiting dictators make a note of what transpired in Libya really? Methinks, nay. If anything, African dictators will not miss Gadaffi, but the petrodollars he stole from his poor people and used to throw at them so as to buy their leverage.

If dictators had any memory, Africa South of Saharan dictators would make a note that what they regard as powerful regimes they man, are but houses of cards. They will crumble just easily shall the hoi polloi decided to take on them. Again, will they take a note? Nay, they won’t. Why? Because most if not all are but megalomaniac, full of myopia and hallucination to put it simple. Unfortunately, dictators think they are smart while in actual fact are but dolts. Take it from me. Many dictators still wrongly think like Gadaffi used to think, that what happened in Libya cannot happen in their countries.

What happened in Libya though leaves one question, when will people in SSA take on their dictators? This is very important. For there are many of Gadaffi like in SSA in countries like Uganda, Rwanda, DRC, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Senegal, Ethiopia, Swaziland, Zimbabwe, The Gambia, Gabon, Togo and Sudan. So too, in the same Maghreb, are countries such as Morocco, Algeria, Mauritania and Syria in the north. Will those dictators ruining those countries take a heed? To know how actually goof, look at how Yemeni Dictator Abdullah Saleh was badly injured and yet still wants to return in office despite all noises of Saleh go.

Just like other dictators in the Sub Saharan Africa, Saleh still thinks that, despite the writings on the wall, his regime will not crumble just like Gadaffi’s. Those in the south still goof saying what happened in Maghreb are for Arabs not Africans. In simple terms, dictators in the south, like fallen Gadaffi, are authoring their own demise and exit. Will the wave and wind of change sweep across Sahara?

Why did Gadaffi repressive regime crumble easily in the first place? Firstly, it had two cracks within. One was the fact that power was within the hands of a family and a few congliore. Secondly, NATO’s ferocious attacks. Though NATO played a decisive role in suffocating Gadaffi, looking at what happened in Egypt and Tunisia. Cracks within the regimes are the major cause of their demise so to speak.

There are some lessons from the fall of Gadaffi and other dictators. First of all, many weapons dictators pile up to defend themselves, are the best capital when citizenry decide to take on them.

Secondly, the vacuums and vaingloriousness dictators create is another nugget when it comes to topple them. For when faced with threats of being toppled, the system that depends on one person, finds itself overwhelmed with the burden of decision making at the time of emergency. The shape and scope of the system is basically determined by one person.

Thirdly, apart from being delusional, dictators are like barking dog that does not bite. They use all types of threats whilst at hearts they know how bogus and coward they are.

Fourthly, almost all dictators are cowards that hide their weakness behind immense powers they command.

Fifthly, all dictators live in the state of hallucination and phantasmagoria, believing they won’t fall at any circumstance, hence become myopic about their fates and plights. So too, even though their regimes are the most hated, dictators daydream that they are loved. It is even sad to find dictators like Yoweri Museveni who toppled other dictators live just like them.

Sixth, African Union has proved to be as useless as never before. For when the crisises in Libya, Egypt and Tunisia started, it was left out, thereby the Arab League taking over the role it would have played. Also it must be noted, AU was openly supporting dictators thanks to being comprised of many member countries ruled by dictators.

In sum, though Gadaffi is going down as one of the most autocratic ruler, he’ll be remembered for his support to liberation movements in good and bad light. A last killer fact is that Gadaffi despite all his extravagance, different from other African fallen dictators who left their countries in abject poverty, left billions of dollars the west froze and unfreeze for the new regime to begin with. This is the good side of the fallen tyrant.

Nkwazi Mhango is a Tanzanian living in Canada. He writes regularly for “The African Executive” and also has a blog entitled “Free Thinking Unabii”. He is a regular contributor to AfroSpear.

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