January 29, 2011
The rapidly developing events in Egypt over the past few days have shown how all dictators (who we will call ‘Dics’ for short, as the term will be repeated extensively in this piece) think and act alike.
I have always been fascinated with the behaviour and thinking of Arab Dics. Growing up in the Middle East, I have witnessed first-hand how Dics react to different situations and different contexts. (how could you not be fascinated with Colonel Qaddafi for example?)
Obviously, in a Dic-Society and due to the conterminous nature of this status, Dics aren’t just heads of states, presidents and politicians – Dics would also be school teachers, principals, business owners, HR managers, editors in chief, clerics, police officers and even civil servants at government bodies who under normal circumstances should be concerned with making people’s lives easier and not more difficult (basically, anyone with a bit of authority in the Arab World is likely to be a candidate for being the perfect Dic).
So, what goes on inside the mind of a typical Arab Dic? First of all – Most Dics are male. There are female Arab Dics, but I am afraid this is one domain which is pretty much male-dominated.
However, there is a room for the ladies in the sick world of a male-dominated Dic-Society.
Most male Dics always seem to have a favourite female associate or assistant who he would typically have ‘Special Love Under the Table’ for – in other words, a female who falls under this description could be called a Dic’s “S.L.U.T”. (a S.L.U.T. would tend to like to abuse this situation and gain as much benefits as possible)
Yet, as the male Dic is typically highly arrogant, he doesn’t express his emotions directly to his S.L.U.T, and could even actually seek to humiliate her – but once he gets his ‘fix’, he rewards her by giving her enough authority to be arrogant herself and became a female Dic within her own jurisdiction.
The second thing you must know about Dics, is that they didn’t arrive to power based on their merit, but because of their relation to a much bigger Dic, be it through family ties or a Dics ability to please a bigger Dic’s ego and re-assure him that he will always be a smaller Dic than him.
The fact is, meritocracy can’t exists in a Dic-Society and in fact the first thing most Dics tend to do is that they quickly get rid of any and all qualified, educated and/or hard working people within their realm.
Dics can’t handle competition, this is why the Late Iraqi Dic, Saddam Hussein, was quick to rid himself from Iraq’s best scientists and technocrats who then had to seek refuge in Europe and the US.
If you want a more modern example, just remember that it is the classic mind-set of ‘My Dic is bigger than yours’ that has started the recent ridiculous race to build the world highest sky-scrapers, when there is not enough people in Arab countries to populate these buildings.
Also, Dics don’t have ears! As I write these lines, there are millions of people on the street in Egypt chanting: ‘Irhal’ (Leave) to President Husni Mubarak who in return appeared on TV ontly to say that he will fire his Prime Minister. (Eventually, they get the message the hard way, as what happened with Bin Ali who first said he will not seek to re-elect himself and vowed, a bit too late to offer freedom to the media, but then found himself on a plane to exile).
(Egyptians tearing down an image of Hosni Mubarak)
The other biological defect with Dics is that they have only one eye. This means that by default, they only see what they want to see, can you imagine how harming to the truth this could be if you are a Dic and happen to be an editor of a newspaper? You would cherry-pick bits and pieces of information that would suit your argument, just so that you are not proven wrong!
Of course, Dics abuse, and abuse happens from top-to-bottom due to the nature of people who are being abused and can’t resist the Dic that abused them. As a result they would start abusing people underneath them instead. (Just think of how Israelis abuse Palestinians, and some Palestinians take it out on other Palestinians rather on Israelis!)
The sickening thing is that there is some satisfaction that comes with power; people LOVE to feel that their word or signature controls other people’s lives and with this power comes the ability to benefit from this status.
Hence, Dics dream of standing tall for ever! And after succeeding at it for a while, they start believing it is possible and perceive themselves as invincible.
However, the one thing I’ve learned from my own experience is that Dics grow bigger when we allow them to.
Basically, we are the reason why Dics become so cocky! If we say NO, if we realize that they don’t control our lives and challenge them, we will soon see how quickly you can topple down even the stiffest of all Dics. I am sure you can think of an example of this from your personal life, I know I can, but if can’t just look at what happened with Bin Ali.