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Libyan President Muammar Gaddafi 1942 - 2011

Muammar Muhammad Abu Minyar al-Gaddafi (June 1942 – 20 October 2011), commonly known as Muammar Gaddafi or Colonel Gaddafi, was Libya's autocratic ruler from 1969, when he seized power in a bloodless military coup, until 1977, and had remained the country's symbolic leader until 2011 when the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya regime he established was overthrown in a civil war which consisted of an uprising aided by a NATO intervention. His 42-year leadership prior to the uprising made him the fourth longest-serving non-royal leader since 1900, as well as the longest-serving Arab leader. He variously styled himself as "the Brother Leader" and "Guide of the Revolution"; in 2008 a meeting of traditional African rulers bestowed on him the title "King of Kings".

After seizing power in 1969, he abolished the Libyan Constitution of 1951. He established laws based on the political ideology he had formulated, called the Third International Theory and published in The Green Book. After establishing the jamahiriya ("state of the masses") system in 1977, he officially stepped down from power and has since then held a largely symbolic role within the country's governance. Rising oil prices and extraction in Libya led to increasing revenues. By exporting as much oil per capita as Saudi Arabia and through various welfare programs, Libya achieved the highest living standards in Africa, though not as high as several similarly oil-rich Gulf countries. Gaddafi and his relatives have been accused of taking over much of the economy. Gaddafi started several wars and acquired chemical weapons. The United Nations called Libya under Gaddafi a pariah state. In the 1980s, countries around the world imposed sanctions against Gaddafi. Six days after the capture of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein in 2006 by United States troops, Gaddafi renounced Tripoli's weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs and welcomed international inspections to verify that he would follow through on the commitment. A leading advocate for a United States of Africa, he served as Chairperson of the African Union (AU) from 2 February 2009 to 31 January 2010.

In February 2011, following revolutions in neighbouring Egypt and Tunisia, protests against Gaddafi's rule began. These escalated into an uprising that spread across the country, with the forces opposing Gaddafi establishing a government based in Benghazi named the National Transitional Council (NTC). This led to the 2011 Libyan Civil War, which included a military intervention by a NATO-led coalition to enforce a UN Security Council Resolution 1973 calling for a no-fly zone and protection of civilians in Libya. The assets of Gaddafi and his family were frozen, and both Interpol and the International Criminal Court issued arrest warrants on 27 June for Gaddafi, his son Saif al-Islam, and his brother-in-law Abdullah al-Senussi, concerning crimes against humanity. Gaddafi and his forces lost the Battle of Tripoli in August, and on 16 September 2011 the NTC took Libya's seat at the UN, replacing Gaddafi. He retained control over parts of Libya, most notably the city of Sirte, to which it was presumed that he had fled. Although Gaddafi's forces initially held out against the NTC's advances, Gaddafi was captured alive as Sirte fell to the rebel forces on Thursday the 20 October 2011, later he had been beaten and killed soon after.

Muammar al-Gaddafi was raised in a bedouin tent in the desert near Sirte (Sidra). According to many biographies, his family belongs to a small tribe of Arabs, the Qadhadhfa. They are mostly herders that live in the Hun Oasis. According to Gaddafi, his paternal grandfather, Abdessalam Bouminyar, fought against the Italian occupation of Libya and died as the "first martyr in Khoms, in the first battle of 1911". Gaddafi attended a Muslim elementary school far from home in Sabha, during which time he was profoundly influenced by major events in the Arab world. He was passionate about the success of the Palestinians and was deeply disappointed by their defeat by Israeli forces in 1948. He admired Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser and looked to him as a hero during his rise to power in 1952. In 1956 Gaddafi took part in anti-Israeli protests during the Suez Crisis. In Sabha he was briefly a member of Scouting. He finished his secondary school studies under a private tutor in Misrata, concentrating on the study of history. Gaddafi entered the Libyan military academy at Benghazi in 1961, and graduated in 1966. Both towards the end of his course and after graduation, Gaddafi pursued further studies in Europe. False rumours have been propagated with regards to this part of his life, for example, that he attended the United Kingdom's Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. He did in fact receive four months' further military training in the United Kingdom, and spent some time in London. After this, as a commissioned officer he joined the Signal Corps. Although often referred to as "Colonel Gaddafi", he was in fact only a Lieutenant when he seized power in 1969. He was, nonetheless, a holder of the honorary rank of Major General, conferred upon him in 1976 by the Arab Socialist Union's National Congress. Gaddafi accepted the honorary rank, but stated that he would continue to be known as "Colonel" and to wear the rank insignia of a Colonel when in uniform.

Thursday Rashichakra October 20

Aquarius  January 20-February 18 A little dieting is usually all you need. Enjoy eating more fresh vegetables and fruits. Energies are present today and tomorrow that are working in your favor to begin this diet. Your timing should be perfect for whatever you would like to achieve. The people around you should find you most energetic and responsive. The situation today is a natural for self-expression and lends itself to your particular ideas. You may be called upon to guide an important visitor to your town. Communication is successful and you can exhibit your town as no other can. All of this relating to others may be for the advancement of a professional position, whether it is a particular work field or an entertainment field. Tonight you will be more involved with neighbors.

Pisces  February 19-March 20 This is a noteworthy day. You know just what to do to in order to bring attention to your talents. Higher-ups are watching and are pleased. This day that is not too lazy or too stressful--you will be accomplishing tasks or setting things up to work in your favor. Innovations--new and possibly unconventional approaches to being productive or making money--are in order. You may discover new values that represent some sort of insight into something that has become a routine. A positive change in your financial status is possible and could lead to new directions. Home, family or real estate is of interest. If you think long-term, you will come out ahead; otherwise, you could find yourself in a tight situation. This evening is a good evening for love.

Aries  March 21-April 19 One of the areas that can be most helpful to you now is your creative expression. Whatever your talents, this is the time to develop them more fully. Improvements in your recently earned finances inspire you to explore different options that can improve your lifestyle. Let your light shine--express yourself. You win, all the way around, especially when you seek ways to help others. Sharing responsibilities may actually improve the productivity of some project today. Also, you may find new friends and gain more secure and permanent relationships at this time. There is also an opportunity to increase your professional status now. Consider volunteering to help at a ranch, farm, forest or zoo--it will answer to your need to stay in touch with nature.

Taurus  April 20-May 20 This is a rewarding day where you can grab a little attention. You are at your most practical when it comes to dealing and working with others. This may not mean a job but could mean working in a collaborative effort within a religious group. If you have been thinking about a new deal, system, project, etc., it is important to speak up about it now. You know just what to do and can act without haste. You develop a knack for organizing things and people, as a sense of ambition and practicality takes hold. Work and achievement mean a lot to you. You could be most persuasive with others and eloquent in speech and communication. The situation is a natural for self-expression and lends itself to your particular creative thinking.

Gemini  May 21-June 21 While it would be easy to get into positions that would encourage long conversations, you will excuse yourself to tend to whatever personal project you have going today. There is a lot of energy and drive available for you in whatever you decide to achieve. You search for ways to expand your financial base and may become more effective at using whatever talents you have available. This is a strong period of self-reflection and you may enjoy getting to know more of your family background, family tree or distant relatives. You may create a family newsletter that is mailed in a round-robin sort of fashion so that everyone can partake and contribute. This is a period of restoration and appreciation when self-confidence and pride in family are increased.

Cancer  June 22-July 22 There is an open door to success and your willingness to travel just may be the ticket. Connections with people on a grand scale--for example, at a distance--play a bigger part in your life now. Education, advertising and travel could play a part in this. Law and philosophy as well as religion impact your lifestyle. Care for your health by learning ways in which to relieve tension--this is a busy time. There is a greater appreciation for things of value. This could be a period of great material gain; it is certainly a time when material things have a great deal of importance for you. Be wise and stay away from spur-of-the-moment purchases. Look into your investments carefully--wise investments can reap large rewards.

Leo  July 23-August 22 Learn techniques that will relieve stress. Responsibilities and outside pressures are just a part of life that keeps us moving forward. Knowing when to accept change and retaining a positive attitude will aid you in maintaining a sense of well-being. You may be particularly dynamic and assertive just now. There is a lot of energy available for you. The power of organization on a social scale seems to take on energy as you enter into a new cycle this afternoon. This could mean changes in the field of business, politics or religion. It's as if ambition and authority are answers in themselves, rather than only a means to an ideal objective. Give career changes plenty of thought--you do not have to make your decision right away. Hug or praise a child today.

Virgo  August 23-September 22 A balance is needed in a love relationship now, meaning . . . shared responsibilities. Address issues that involve controlling types of people. Things are happening, and your life path depends on your own drive to achieve and excel--which are strong now. You are able to use good common sense and you will make all the right moves; trust in your decision-making abilities. You will prosper by pursuing your dreams of how life could be. Make contact with siblings or relatives today, perhaps by phone or letter. You are eager to have a support network and there is nothing better than your own family to make that happen. Do not hesitate to lend your own support--turnabout is fair play. Thought: how we behave is many times mirrored in our children.

Libra  September 23-October 23 It may be difficult to keep your mind on your work today. Perhaps because of some glorious changes in your home life, you would rather be home. Keep a notebook of your thoughts, feelings and ideas for goals or changes you want accomplished. Soon you will find yourself back to the work that needs your magic touch. Those ideas and thoughts of yours are developing quite nicely . . . keep a notebook. Home and family may be in something of a state of change--this may mean moving, adding in a new family member, or something similar. High tech equipment impinges on the domestic environment somehow. Comparison shop and think about whether you really need an item before you take on new debt. There is a temptation to buy frivolously now.

Scorpio  October 24-November 21 The power of organization on a social scale (business, politics, etc.) seems to take on an important role in your life at this time. There is charisma, self-transformation and the ability to improve or enhance your personal power. Remember that tiny causes can lead to big effects. There is some profound change on the personal level--psychologically and perhaps physically as well. It is as though you are transforming yourself into an entirely new person. A political stance about mandatory daycare or some other issue is important to you now and you will be successful in finding enough people to help create a new plan. You may decide to create a newsletter. Family matters are fun this evening as everyone gathers to tell of their day.

Sagittarius  November 22-December 21 You may find yourself in a heated discussion this morning--or so it seems. Most of the debate is a light-hearted sparring of viewpoints. You agree to disagree and respect the diversity around which you work. Writing and communication play a significant role in your life and connecting with others through new technologies can be exciting and challenging. You may find yourself at a home or at a sports show this afternoon and somehow attract a gathering of people with your questions or input. The insights that you have are helpful; however, know when to walk away. You set an example by making it your first priority to treat others as you would want them to treat you. It almost seems as though there is no problem that you cannot handle. Relax with music.

Capricorn  December 22-January 19 Professional advice will bring you some interesting insights today. You are unusually motivated or driven in new and unexpected directions. Your efforts are successful. Your thoughts are pensive at noon as you contemplate the many, many subjects for which you would like to be magically enlightened. Learning the latest in science, fashion, health, technical advancement, social gossip is impossible to absorb in one day; however, if you pick a subject a week you will be more caught up on many discoveries than most. You may even seem a bit paranoid in that you see so many things from which to become updated that you see a hidden aspect. In other words there is so much candy in the candy store you may feel the need to see beyond.