From Idris to Gaddafi

  • Geoff Simons


It is often said that war is the midwife of nations: in fact the Second World War delivered many offspring, albeit sometimes after difficult and protracted labours. Japanese and French colonialism in the Far East was fatally damaged, so stimulating nationalisms and new ideologies; European colonialism in India, the Middle East and Africa was weakened, allowing the emergence not only of nationalist aspirations but also of pan-Arabist and pan-African sentiment. The War had shaken the old framework, eroding the position of the European colonial powers and giving fresh impetus to the imperial theme in the history of the United States. A ravaged Soviet Union was forced to adopt the guise of a superpower against a massively strengthened America: new regional and global hegemonies were being shaped but in the immediate post-war years many of the political patterns were unclear. This was true of Libya, just as it was true of many other peoples emerging from centuries of dominance by foreign powers.


Trade Union Middle East Security Council British Government Arab State 
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© Geoff Simons 1993

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  • Geoff Simons

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