Trump: The new Gaddafi? Or the American Sisi?

Published January 22nd, 2017 - 01:36 GMT
Separated at birth? American President Trump and former Libyan dictator Gaddafi (Facebook)
Separated at birth? American President Trump and former Libyan dictator Gaddafi (Facebook)

American President Donald Trump, a man who threatened to put his opponent in prison and claimed he would not accept the election result if he did not win, arguably has something of the tyrant about him.

This is not something that has been lost on Arab audiences, familiar as they are with authoritarian leaders. Activist Mona Eltahawy wrote in the New York Times over the weekend that Trump “...sounds just like one of our despots,” styling the Republican as “The American Sisi,” in reference to the Egyptian general-turned-president.

The comparison captured the imaginations of a number of Egyptians on Twitter:

The New York Times could not find a better insult than to to call Trump the American Sisi.

#Sisi has become the highest example internationally of idiocy, and an insult.

Meanwhile, one Facebook user went above and beyond to identify some striking similarities between Trump and his unlikely doppelganger in the figure of the late Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi. The former reality television star is not immune to a touch of plagiarism, and it seems like a number of his tweets could be cut and pasted from Gaddafi’s famous “Green Book”, a work setting out his political philosophy.

It was Gaddafi who coined the phrase Jamahiriyya to refer to “rule by the masses” in the North African nation he governed for four decades. Meanwhile, in Trump’s “Jamahiriyya Amrikiyya Uthama’” ("The Great American Republic of the Masses") rule will be “transferred from Washington to the people”, according to his inauguration speech:

Jamahiriyya: The people govern themselves.

There can be no freedom for those who buy from abroad.

It’s not just in their words that the the two are alike. In fact, to look at them it’s like they were separated at birth.

Being so similar in words and looks, some of the hundreds of thousands of protesters that took to the streets over the weekend might say it’s not too soon to hope that Trump goes a similar way to his Libyan counterpart.

RA

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