“We want freedom,” cried Ahmed Ali, standing at the door of the 40-foot long container that had been his prison. He had been detained with nine others by Gaddafi forces.
“The young men were dying from a lack of water and I could not do anything. The picture of these containers will never leave my mind,” continued the 54-year-old teacher.
Ten thousands fled Libya when the Libyan revolution was in the second week of mayhem and chaos. The brutality of Gaddafi’s forces in the capital city and the final days when the rebels took over the city were well documented by news agencies such as MSNBC, TIME.com and NPR.
Each story carried a name and a face that painted the landscape of chaotic but now liberated Libya.
Watch a New Future
I switched on the MSNBC video broadcast.
“Bang, bang…” Loud gun shots were heard in the background.
My heart pounded.
I saw smiling Libyan rebels holding AK47, rattle shots into the air as they celebrated the start of a new future. Each face reflected a picture of joy and relief that the rule of dictatorship was over.
Read about the Forgotten
I turned the webpages of TIME magazine, and read the struggles of Aziz, the face amongst thousands of unknown foreign workers forgotten in the midst of Libya’s turmoil.
“I was looking for survival,” Aziz says of the long desert journey from Sudan.
“He spent months making his way illegally northeast from West Africa, bypassing other conflicts, to get away from his own war-torn nation of Liberia and find something better in oil-rich Libya,” reported TIME.
Ten of thousands like Aziz had to flee.
Listen to Those Finding Their Way Home
Tuning into NPR, I listened to the story of thousands of Libya’s ex-prisoners finding their way home. The infamous prison saw joyful sweet reunions of those freed from Gadhafi’s notorious prisons. A Libyan TV station broadcast a list of freed prisoners.
Musa Faraj’s heart leapt when his son’s name appeared on the screen.
“It was No. 14 on the list.”
A New Revolution
“What’s next for Libya?” I pondered quietly in my heart.
Perhaps a revolution of the heart.
“If from there you seek the LORD your God, you will find him if you seek him with all your heart and with all your soul”
Deuteronomy 4:29 (NIV).