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His last visit to see his parents, who are in their 80s, was two years ago. Someday soon he believes tourists will come to his country to view the ancient ruins and the sunny desert.
With finishing his education at Queens was out of the question, Barrah, who was keen to study politics, met Cynthia Alexander. His wife, today, teaches political science at Acadia University.
He also sees ex pats, like economist Ali Tarhouni, returning from the United States and England to bolster the new government. He is now finance minister.
"From the early 1980s through the '90s was the darkest period," he said. "You can't express yourself to people you know, not everybody."
His generation, Barrah believes, was crushed by Gaddafi's iron fist, so he offers kudos to the young adults who spawned change. So in February, he found himself glued to the internet daily to find out what was happening at home.
It was 16 years before he dared to visit. Meanwhile Barrah worried about his family being aggressively investigated due to his refusal to return.
"Such a powerful voice," he declared of the Libya Alhurra TV broadcaster. "He presented what was (actually) going on," as Gaddafi agreed to a ceasefire and then continued the carnage.
When Barrah arrived at Queen's University, he had been told to become a mechanical engineer. Later the regime dictated he should return to Libya.
Meanwhile a group of Libyan ex pats has formed in Halifax and even pulled in members from as far away as Yarmouth. Calling themselves, the Maritime Libyan Association, they held a fundraising dinner in April and collected $70,000.
"His plan to divide and rule worked very well," Barrah said. So did public hangings in arenas conducted live on TV "to put the fear in everyone. A lot of people fled the country," he said.
just gone," he remembered. Soon Barrah was bringing his laptop to work at the Ivy Deck Bistro to keep tabs Jimmy Choo Trainers Blue on breaking news.
After 42 years with a merciless control on power, Barrah said, Gaddafi's regime was bound to find it self fighting a civil war in the North African state. He believes social media and technology helped activate the revolution.
Libya will require assistance from the West to repair damaged infrastructure and create democracy, he said, "but there is money to be made. With its oil revenue, Libya can pay its share."
"I stayed in Canada. It was a hard time for me," he said.
Wolfville man watching Libya from afar
Barrah said he has been cautiously optimistic since Sept. 16 when the United Nations recognized Libya and its National Transitional Council.
"With Facebook and Twitter, in an instant the news was beamed to everybody. People (in Libya) could see how the outside world lives, with freedom to talk and dress. That was the major reason."
"I'd like to go back tomorrow," Barrah said with a grin. "I keep wishing that I was there. It must be an incredible feeling."
The Tripoli native was sent to study in Canada by Muammar Gaddafi's government in the 1980s. He knew the peaceful protests would be met by military force by the Gaddafi regime.
lot of us stayed (in Canada) and worked," Barrah recalled.
amongst those Libyans sent to Canada.
"The fear factor was Giuseppe Zanotti Black And White
He paid tribute to citizen journalist Mohammed Nabbous, who was killed by a sniper in early March when Gaddafi's forces attacked Benghazi. Nabbous was in his late 20s. He and his wife were expecting a baby.
Even family members at home would shut all the windows and doors before having a conversation, due to the amount of fear and mistrust in the country. Spies were in the streets of Tripoli and Giuseppe Zanotti Mens Grey
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