Tuesday, November 10, 2009

PR for the Libyan dictator

An American PR firm hired by the Libyan dictator sent this invitation to an American journalist (who shared it with me--she/he does not want to be identified): "I wanted to see if you are interested in joining a small media trip to Libya from November 16-19 being arranged by the Gaddafi Foundation. The trip will provide an opportunity to gain insight into the Libyan Government’s program to rehabilitate members of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG). Through an innovative program that encourages non-violence and the repudiation of extremism, the Gaddafi Foundation (chaired by Saif al-Islam Gaddafi) has engaged in a dialogue with LIFG prisoners over several years and secured the release of many of the group’s members from jail. The Foundation is providing assistance to those who have been released to help them re-integrate into society, find meaningful work, and put them on a sustainable path of non-violence. The two-day visit to Libya will give you the opportunity to conduct interviews with both those LIFG members released and those who are part of the rehabilitation program in prison, as well as access to the book penned by LIFG leaders explaining the rationale behind their decision to renounce violence and affiliation with al-Qa’ida, and the opportunity to speak with officials from the Foundation and the Libyan government who have been involved in implementing the program. All travel and visa arrangements will be provided by the Foundation."