Muna Khan / The curious case of Aisha Qaddafi’s birthing powers
Thanks to a link posted on Twitter by the Guardian’s Middle East correspondent Brian Whitaker, I came across the blog “Egyptian Chronicles,” and one post raised some interesting questions about Muammar Qaddafi’s daughter, Aisha, and the birth of her baby girl in Algeria last week.
The blogger, Zeinobia, noted that Aisha had filed a complaint in a Belgian court of war crimes against NATO for an airstrike in Tripoli that killed her brother and 4-month-old daughter Mastoora on April 30. The complaint was thrown out by the court on July 28.
After doing the math, Zeinobia comes to the conclusion that something is very fishy here.
If Mastoora was four months old in April when she died, Aisha would have had to become pregnant fairly quickly after Mastoora's birth in January for her to give birth to another daughter last week.
It is safe to assume – even if rotten to imagine – that one of Aisha’s births is a lie. She just can’t be that superfertile. Also, as Zeinobia pointed out, in many of the recent images of Aisha she studied, the woman did not appear pregnant, though the blogger concedes that because the former leader’s daughter is tall and slim, it’s not easy to identify a baby bump.
However, given new revelations that Qaddafi has been lying for nearly two decades about the death of his adopted daughter Hana in a US airstrike, it is not hard to imagine Aisha concocting the birth/death of a child. That may just be a Qaddafi trait – claim the death of loved ones for sympathy, even if your credibility is eroded after your lies have been exposed.
It’s difficult not to be baffled by the sheer audacity of it all.
The Qaddafis aren’t alone for telling lies in a bid to cling onto power.
Let us just hope the Algerians weren’t complicit – or duped – into any falsehoods about Aisha’s pregnancy, which was the reason the escaping family was allowed into the country.
Algeria wasn’t very forthcoming with the details of the Qaddafis’ arrival in their country, and they were even cagier about Aisha’s birth – the birth announcement was made a full 24 hours after the initial news of the family’s escape from Libya.
When this is seen with the country’s earlier stance on Libya, specifically its refusal to recognize the National Transitional Council until today ¬– after a rather loud international outcry – it’s easy to understand why the French foreign minister, Alain Juppe, called Algeria’s stance on Libya “ambiguous”.
In the coming days, or weeks, it will be interesting to see how the NTC’s demand for the extradition of the Qaddafi family from Algeria plays out.
Algeria’s recognition of the NTC is conditional on it forming a government in Libya, after which Algeria will have to address the council’s demand to repatriate the Qaddafi family to face criminal charges filed against them.
What will come of a baby girl born on the border whose existence, let alone citizenship, is yet to be defined? If there’s no baby, Algeria will have a lot of explaining to do. If she’s real, a quagmire will be unleashed and the Qaddafis may just use the only sympathy card they have left – and beg the Libyans to spare the child the humiliation the rest of the family is bound to endure.