Saturday, June 30, 2007

Your chance to offer advice!

Being American means that lots of Libyans think I have some direct influence on what goes on at the American Embassy in Libya. Libyans think that their system of connections, known here in Libya as wasta, includes me somehow.

Well, not surprisingly, I hear all kinds of stories. One of the stories that I have been hearing quite frequently is from Libyans who were born in the US and go to the Embassy to apply for an American passport and have their meeting with embassy 'officials' in the coffee shop downstairs. They are not allowed into the embassy's offices upstairs, their business is discussed in full earshot of whoever else happens to be in the Corinthia's coffee shop. These Libyan/Americans are usually young guys who are too embarrassed to make an issue out of being met in the coffee shop because they think if they question it their chances of getting the passport (they are rightfully entitled to) might be influenced negatively.

For some reason this sounds a bit fishy to me. But who do you complain to? They come to me asking for advice and hoping I can help them.

What should I tell them??


  1. I don't think there is anything anyone can do. In this day and age trust is very hard to come by. It sad that privacy is something that has gone by the way side. If they have something private to say they might try writing a letter and delivering it in person at a sit down coffee meeting.

  2. Tell the embassy you want a job as councelor to these people. Sounds like our embassy is not doing its job if it is spending all day in the coffee shop! Sad when we finally get a embassy they are just as lazy doing their jobs. You have an office gentlemen use it.

  3. Oh by the way inform our embassy officals that the information that is being discussed with these people is confidential not public. We are entitled to a right of privacy and also tell them you dont want a cup of tea or coffee you want them to process your application. If that doesnt stir them up maybe contacting a authority in the usa about the problem will get them moving.

  4. "What should I tell them??"

    Tell them to go apply for it in Egypt, not even Tunisia only in Egypt if they can't get a visa to a European country. As for the Embassy officials in Tripoli they have other priorities and they aren't going to jeopardize them for the sake of some Libyan/Americans who can't complain and who, even if they did, wouldn't be heard ..........

  5. i think the embsaay staff are gr8 people, i go thier often these days and sometimes without an appiontments and there is always somebody to help.
    i applied for US visa in Tunis last Thursday and i was surprised of how good and nice the staff were, they are much better than the British Embassy staff here in Tripoli. i don't know if i was just lucky but i guess both Embassies staff in Libya and Tunis are nice and polite..

  6. I'm an american, married to a brit, which to my moms is worse than being married to suicide bombing arab. That aside, I've nothing good to say about the embassy here. They must have parties, or mixers or something to familiarize damn, that Red Hot Chilie Peppers Video Hump de pump or something like that is really great! Anyways, the embassy here pretty much sucks. There is no love. They are all obvious Bush appointees.. But then again, how good of friends could you be with the president to be appointed Ambassador to the US in fucking Libya! LMFAO..

  7. Aladin - let us know how you feel about them if your visa request is turned down..

  8. Typical Libyan Male. Khadijateri says Mani, the Libyan Blogger who lives in the UK wants to talk to you. I'm like, okay gimme his number....I dial the number and some guy who says, "this number is no longer manni's, We've had too many callers, please don't call here again". I was so embarrassed. I felt like some schoolgirl calling for a hookup at the bowling alley! So hey Mani, I'm callin you out! You got a phone or what? You livin at home with mom and pop and they doin that "western thang" kickin yo lazy no job havin ass out at 18? O h wait, you working for that mob front called the Libyan Economic Development thang up in Serage? Wait, don't tell me, you get like 250 LYD for hookin up some unsuspecting citizen with one of the mob bosses you work for?
    Just bustin yer balls mani...I'm sure you are't that stupid......

  9. watch?v=BdH987JJDYs
    Since Khadijateri scorned me for making such a random comment in my post I thougt I'd post a link to the RHCP's video.

  10. Sigh... Tara has just made her rentry... She'll have to go through all the phases of culture shock all over again! This is one of the reasons that I don't go 'home' very often (not for 12 years now)... the rentry into culture shock is extremely difficult to get over.

    Tara get your snorkel out... we're going to the beach!!!

    [ and Mani! stop being an ass and answer the phone!]

  11. LOLOLOL tara.. calling me out eh? :)

    I have a new telephone number which I got yesterday. my email is on my profile if you wanna ask for it.

    for a psychoanalysit, you still get carried away by first impressions rather quickly dont you? :).. The person you spoke to is only upset cause I havent been in touch with him for some time. You should call him out too, he is a philosopher who used to teach Islamic Philosophy in Sweden :)

    Looking foreward to meet you.


  12. well please pray for me that they don't turned me down, but even if they did, the people were nice to me both in Libya and Tunis..
    OMG u're right i just realised that my Visa may be turned down. Khadijateri please give me some support, i am afraid now loool..

  13. old momma,

    Sad when we finally get a embassy they are just as lazy doing their jobs. You have an office gentlemen use it.

    I'm pretty sure we don't have an Embassy in Libya, yet. We have some embassy STAFF in Libya, and some sort of facilities for them to use, but it is by no means a fully functional embassy.


    There will be a new Ambassador in Libya after the 2008 elections. Libya is going to be a very important posting. I don't think it's going to be one of those embassies that's inhabited by one a brown-nosing crony of who ever happens to be in the white house.

    And besides, it's not the Ambassador who is important when it comes to issues like Khadijateri is talking about, but rather the professional staff :)

  14. To all of you who voted for a republican like Bush, I would say you deserve the crappy service we get under any republican government inside and outside US, and for the democrats, I would say just stay put and be patient because our time to reclaim the Whitehouse is next year 2008 it might take us several years to clean up all the mess left by the stinky arrogant low life republicans, but it will be worth it. And I guarantee you the US Embassy in Libya will have it’s own identity and respect under the next democratic president.

  15. i vote republican Ron Paul (theoretically ony of course. i cant actually vote).. Mr. Abudaber who of the democrats do u propose as your ( and by extnsion our) saviour?

  16. Mani! That is your problem! A Republican! OMG!!

    The last presidential election I was sent two absentee ballots.... I will share one with you if it happens again... but only if you promise NOT to vote republican...

    LOLOL! Your vote wouldn't count anyway!!! ROTFL

  17. To mani
    barack obama is our next president and I will tell you, this guy is smart, conservative, loyal, honest, and can kick ass. Read his book The Audacity of Hope
    (number 1 seller in US for so many weeks and still in the top 10 best seller) here's his site:-

  18. Dear Khadija

    I got the Visa yesterday, so my feelings are the same toward the staff, they are great and nice..

  19. salam again pees..

    first, Aladdin, Mabrook to your visa :)

    second Teri... please dont be shortsighted the world isnt as simple as the fake difference between republican and democrat.. i dont need to say more here.. but I personally would love to have a US vote.. even if i dont live there.. the whole world should, since they do play a HUGE role in deciding the politics of the world.. and the dependence of nations of the damned...

    now Mr. abudaber.. your saviour Obama also voted for the War on Iraq didnt he?? I havent read the book nor did any in depth study.. but this vote and a quick glance at his standing position in the presidential debates quickly made my mind up..

    Ron Paul is the ONLY candidate out of both republican and democrats who has voted AGAINST ever Amaerican war in the middle east and afghanistan...

    and go and check his campaign sponsors...

    in my opinion.. he is the only one there (maybe besides the other lil short dude and the old fella who i forgot both their names but democrats) at least in the republican camp who is a strict CONSTITUIONALIST.

    other than that.. dont count on entrepenurial politicians to better our lives.. we are too far down the rabbit hole now to avoid world war three..

  20. To mani again
    You're thinking of Hilary Clinton when you wrote about Obama, and since you do not even know who Obama is, do some study and refresh your mind with facts. You do not vote so why am I discussing this issue with you. Again barack obama is our next president and I will tell you, this guy is smart, conservative, loyal, honest, and can kick ass. Read his book The Audacity of Hope
    (number 1 seller in US for so many weeks and still in the top 10 best seller) here's his site:-

  21. Hillary Clinton (misspelled, sorry)

  22. Barack Obama did not vote for the war in Iraq.

  23. Regardless of the lack of an OFFICIAL embassy, the men are there to represent american interests in a foreign land. Our interests are not for others ears. They appear to have an office made for the purpose of recieving interested individuals so they need to use it. And by the way many people think Obama is a little to GOOD to be true. Even muslims that I know are skeptical in voting for him. Oh and in the last election I did not vote for Bush not that it is anyones business who we vote for if I remember correctly that is why we have secret ballots. When you are elected to do a job that represents a large group of people who have no other recourse in the determination of their fate these people need to act accordingly and with the respect that the people who come to them deserve. If I wanted to discuss my life in a coffee shop I would ssk them to join me there. Its called a right to privacy.


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