Al Jazeera English. Thousands were killed and tortured there amid gruesome conditions, although the exact number of victims will never be known because the secretive facility kept no records.
The Marvelous Mix-Up and other tales of Reb Shalom
As Al Jazeera's Tony Birtley reports from Tripoli, one year after the first protests that culminated in the revolution, Abu Salim remains a powerful symbol of the worst brutalities of the Gaddafi regime. In a recent interview with Al Jazeera, a Libyan who was on death row in the prison described his life there.
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We must transcend zero-sum limits of love to reach peace
Attaque contre un centre de migrants en Libye : pas de condamnation unanime. Aftermath of an air strike on Libya migrant centre. Agence France-Presse. UN-backed Libyan govt blames Haftar forces for airstrike. On the one hand, it was a police detective show mash up featuring scary monsters.
On the other hand, it was a journey into the enduring power of storytelling, fairy tales and our all-too-human fascination with dark and light, evil and redemption. Back in Cleveland, for instance, we read all of the Harry Potter novels out loud over many a long Shabbat afternoon. Well, Laura and I read them aloud, although in later years, Shayah would occasionally take a spell.
Like Harry Potter, the story line grew increasingly more sophisticated and darker as the seasons progressed. Nonetheless, what made the series hang together was the way the characters hung together. Fate conspired to build a makeshift, loving and sometimes dysfunctional family out of very different sorts of individuals. But it was very well-done. And it reminds us that not only is evil real, but that ordinary people have the power to stand in the breach whenever it threatens to destroy all we hold dear.
Cuarto Sin Puerta by Shalim | | CD | Barnes & Noble®
What is remarkable about all this is how our Torah presents very different notions of evil than the black and white understandings that fairy tales, myths or even the post-modern Grimm propagate. Moses, as pure a hero as the world has seen, disobeys God when drawing forth water from the rock.
While this may not seem revolutionary in a period when the Happy Hollywood ending is a thing of the past, a great many of us still cling to simplistic notions of good and evil. We find them comforting. Much has been written that defends their actions, or that attempts to explain their otherwise sudden and inexplicable death. It also highlights that from a God-like perspective, innocent-seeming actions may deserve ultimate punishments.
I recall some studies of criminals on death row. Although these individuals were convicted of horrendous acts of murder, when asked, they all viewed themselves as good people. There is something correct in that self-assessment. Our worst actions only tell part of our story. Even the best of us are judged on a sliding scale of morality.
Those who are more morally capable more robust self-control, finer analytic abilities, etc. This approach to ethical dilemmas has several advantages.