Prof. Salim Said Discusses Middle East Crisis in FISIP
|Prof. Dr. Salim Said, MA discussion with several faculty and students of Faculty of Social UMM.
Professor of the Faculty of Social and Political Science (FISIP) University of Muhammadiyah Malang (UMM), Prof. Dr. Salim Said, MA, revealed that the conflict in the Middle East must be seen through historical context. Each country in the Middle East has a peculiarity. Thus, they cannot be viewed in general. What is now happening in Libya is unlike in Egypt, Tunisia, Bahrain, and so forth.
Salim expressed that opinion when discussing with some lecturers and FISIP students, Monday (03/28) in Room 611 of GKB I UMM. Salim admitted that his presence at the forum was a a call of heart after a long could not interact with UM academic community because of his duties as ambassador to the Republic of Chechnya. "I asked for this meeting. Whenever there is a chance, I want to discuss about current issues so that it can stimulate research themes for students and lecturers," he said.
Furthermore, Salim revealed the crisis in Libya is actually very complex. If the upheaval in Egypt was ended with the resignation of Hosni Mubarak, in Libya, there is still no sign of Moammar Qadafi to put his position. Instead of leaving his position, Qadafi challenged the West which is now bombarding the country with the pretext of securing the fly-free zone.
"If the Egyptians have troops who are ready to replace the transitional regime, then the condition in Libya is still not clear because there are no real civil society and the soldiers. There are only Qadafi’s cronies who rely on his wealth to the ruling," said Salim.
As a result, it still cannot be predicted what would happen if Qadafi fall. Salim suspected, opposition group in Libya is not a pure opposition of mostly Libyans. They came from fundamentalist groups who had military training in Afghanistan. This is quite worrying because it could be that in post-Qadafi era, Libya will also remain a bone of contention. "Factors of anger against Qadafi’s attitudes and oils have attracted the Western to join forces demolishing the Libyan government," said Salim.
Responding to the question of a participant about the effects of this crisis on the Middle Eastern countries, Salim reiterated that each country in the Middle East has a different history. Saudi Arabia, for example, is a family state. The country is rich in oil and capable of giving prosperity to its people. Although using monarchy system, the country is somewhat difficult to be swayed. It has not only sufficient number of armies and people, but also a close relationship with powerful countries such as the U.S.
Salim advised students to begin looking for interesting themes from those current research issues. When first stepping in the U.S., he admitted that he had an idea of a dissertation to be written. Not surprisingly, the idea to collect data about the Indonesian army was the first theme for the dissertation in Indonesia. "I encourage you to be the first," said the former foreign desk editor of Tempo magazine. (bib/nas/t_alf)