Sunday, 23 October 2011

The Awkward Spin

Now that Colonel Muammar Gaddafi is dead, China has quickly changed its tune.

Previously state media described the Libyan dictator as a "Middle Eastern strongman" who defied Western threats and pressure.

At first Beijing even refused to support the rebels or to criticize Gaddafi. The Chinese government even abstained in the UN Security Council vote on whether to use force to protect civilians from Gaddafi's troops, and was highly critical of the NATO air strikes that helped unseat the dictator.

It wasn't until several months later into the civil conflict did China begin to realize that the "strongman" was losing his grip on the country. On September 12 Beijing finally recognized the National Transitional Council as the ruling authority in Libya.

And now with the dictator finally removed after 42 years of rule, China is madly spinning the story -- depicting the "strongman" now as a "madman".

Chinese state media, including Xinhua and People's Daily ran pictures of Gaddafi's corpse and describing him as insane.

It took all this time for Beijing to figure out he was in fact a "madman"?

While China is now calling for stability, unity and peace, it's obvious the government is keen to get in on reconstruction efforts in the war-torn country.

However, the NTC has followed China's actions and may not be as cooperative as Gaddafi when it came to contracts...

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