Qaddafi Heads African Union

The African Union elected Muammar el-Qaddafi as its new chairman yesterday, a perch from which the Libyan leader hopes to implement his “dream of transforming Africa, a collection of post-colonial fragments divided by borders that were drawn arbitrarily by Western powers, into a vast, unified state that could play a powerful role in global affairs.” Qaddafi has talked repeatedly about implementing a single currency, a single army, and single passport for the entire continent. He was the frontrunner for the chairmanship, but it is still something of a surprise, as the A.U. has, in recent years, elected democratic leaders to its head.