Moammar Gadhafi, who ruled Libya for 42 years, had been forced to step down from office when Libyans took to the streets in protest of his brutal dictatorship.
For months, he and his followers fought off the rebels. He maintained to the end that he was still Libya’s ruler.
Then, he disappeared. No one could find him.
All that ended Thursday, when rebel forces shot him to death in his hometown, Sirte.
Gadhafi’s reign over Libya was at times colourful and brutal. He often acted like an arrogant celebrity, having meetings with dignitaries in an enormous white tent which he set up wherever he went including large cities like Paris and New York. He had female bodyguards who wore camouflage and high-heels and carried machine guns.
As leader of Libya, Gadhafi did some terrible things. He didn’t allow anyone to say anything bad about him or his friends. If they did, they were quickly executed, often in big public “celebrations.” He gave money to known terrorists, and he was trying to create nuclear weapons for Libya, according to news site NDTV.
He wrote a three-volume book about his beliefs, which every schoolchild in Libya was required to read.
Gadhafi did do some good things for Libya. The country became quite rich because of its oil, which it sells for a lot of money. Gadhafi used the money to build roads, hospitals and schools for the Libyan people. He also helped to raise the country’s literacy rate to 88 per cent.
When Gadhafi was in hiding, the rebels had formed a new government called the “National Transitional Council.” Now that Gadhafi is dead, it will likely soon be declared the official government.
With the news of the leader’s death, Libyans took to the streets to cheer and celebrate.
Canada’s combat mission in Libya will end in two weeks. The country’s role will likely change to helping Libyans rebuild, develop new and fairer laws and help to uphold human rights in the country.
By Kathleen Tilly
What do you think Moammar Gadhafi’s death means to Libya and Libyans? What is next for Libya?
Use information from this article, ideas from previous TKN articles about Libya, and your own ideas to discuss these questions.
This article contains sentences of different lengths. Identify all of the short sentences in the article. Why do you think the journalist chose to write these sentences in this style? Does it change how you read and understand the text?
Identify various elements of style – including word choice and the use of similes, personification, comparative adjectives, and sentences of different types, lengths, and structures – and explain how they help communicate meaning (OME, Reading: 2.4).
Identify various elements of style – including foreshadowing, metaphor, and symbolism – and explain how they help communicate meaning and enhance the effectiveness of texts (OME, Reading: 2.4).
Grammar Feature: Adjectives
Several adjectives are used to describe Gadhafi in this article. Write them down and add more adjectives to the list in order to paint a clear picture of Moammar Gadhafi.