Ibrahim N. Abusharif

Ibrahim N. Abusharif is a professor at Northwestern University in Qatar. He is a journalist and writer. Middle East Correspondent.

"For the vast majority of people in the West, this Italian-Libyan history is unfamiliar, but along the Mediterranean rim, the story is quite different. In August 2008, Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi apologized to Libya for 40 years of colonial rule and committed Italy to pay nearly $5 billion in reparations over time. For the most part, the contrition was met with approval in the region. With the world’s attention now on the strife in Libya and Qaddafi’s desperate call to unite Arabs to resist NATO’s 'neo-colonial' aggression, Holmboe’s rare eye-witness account can help us recall why that apology was necessary, and it prompts us to ask whether public confessions and cash can really correct the damage wrought by colonialism, especially in 'one of the most extreme of all cases of colonial repression,' as Timothy Winter called it in his 1994 introduction to Desert Encounter."

— Ibrahim N. Abusharif, "Libya, 1931", The Los Angeles Review of Books