It may be fashionable in Paris, but will lipstick and high heels keep Qaddafi Safe?


News reports were buzzing after Libya’s controversial leader, Col. Qaddafi visited Paris. Most focused on the extravagance of the trip. Many appeared mesmerized by his all-female protective detail.

While we are used to seeing females as part of protective details, especially where female principals and children are involved, there is something that does not appear right about the Libyan leader’s detail. There seems to be too much emphasis being placed on their looks and style. Afterall, it is quite difficult to imagine an attack scenario on a Principal being handled professionally by a security detail where everyone is wearing high heels and smiling at the cameras.

At the risk of sounding sexist or demeaning to women, these Libyan bodyguards look more like flight attendants than any kind of presidential Secret Service type of unit. While a strong case can be made that these women are helping to promote women’s rights in the Islamic world, one wonders if they offer the kind of serious protection needed by a country leader.

This is even more relevant in today’s climate with reports that Al Quaeda consider Qaddafi as an enemy of Islam for having “sold out” to the West. No doubt, his cruising around Paris with French President, Nicolas Sarkozy will not help his cause back at home.

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