Muammar el-Qaddafi is looking to revamp his image a bit. The Libyan dictator’s reputation, while never good, has taken a hit recently as civil war tears his country apart and the whole world condemns his 42-year iron-fisted rule. Being a corrupt strongman is a tough sell, and Qaddafi wants a good publicist in New York, the capital of PR, for the job. Anyone interested? It’s a big account!
According to the Post, an official from the Libyan Ministry of Information sent out a pitch letter to PR firms in New York and Los Angeles, asking them to “present our just and fair case to the world.”
It continued, “We have good moral, political and legal logic supporting our position as the legitimate, sovereign and popular government of Libya. We also have proofs [sic] in written, audio and video forms to take our case forward.” And “Libya has been under an unjustified media and p.r. attack which led to NATO’s military involvement,” so the lucky flack who takes this job can help them out of that jam.
So far, there are no takers. I can’t imagine why not!
(By the way, if you’ve read A Visit From the Goon Squad, you’ll note that this exact situation happens in the book, and a character manages to almost rehabilitate the image of a scary Third World dictator much like Qaddafi by putting him in a funny hat. Miracles can happen.)
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on July 31, 2011