Libya 1.4

The Arab spring which started out so peacefully with the change of the governments of Egypt and Tunisia took a turn for the more violent when NATO was involved in the overthrow of the Libyan government. Libyan stamps have begun their fourth phase. First, there were the issues of the Italian Colony of Libya which issued over a hundred different stamps before 1951. After WW II and the Italian occupation, there were the Independence issues which were issued from 1951-1969. In 1969, Muammar Gadaffi staged a coup and became the sole ruler of Libya for over 40 years until he was overthrown last summer. Libya has a large geographic area but a small population and is largely desert and had a largely nomadic population until oil was discovered. The oil wealth of Libya is enormous and hopefully will not be squandered under the new government as it was under Gadaffi. I have always been partial to Italian Colony stamps. They are very well printed and hard to find without being terribly pricey. From an investment or popularity point of view collectors should try to find countries that have a dual pull-that is appeal to collectors of more than one area. The classic stamps of Libya are needed for both Libya collectors and collectors of the Italian area. If you decide to add a few Libyan stamps to your collection don’t forget to look at Tripolitania and Cyrenaica, which were two provinces of Libya which issued their own stamps in the 1930s.

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