U.S. Fighter Planes Down Two Libyan Jets (Great Events: 1900-2001)
Article abstract: Tensions between the United States and Libya led to a clash between two U.S. fighter planes and two Libyan MiG-23’s over international waters off the coast of Libya.
Following World War II, Libya, a land of North Africa, became the first country to gain independence through the United Nations. The Kingdom of Libya was created in December, 1951. In September, 1969, a group of young army officers overthrew the Libyan government; the leader of the group was twenty-seven-year-old Colonel Muammar al-Qaddafi.
In 1977, Qaddafi became president of Libya and commander in chief of the country’s armed forces. Qaddafi had particular ideas about how Libya should be governed; he called his ideas jamahiriya, or Islamic socialism. The president explained his jamahiriya policies in a collection of essays published as The Green Book.
In the following years, Qaddafi used huge profits from Libya’s sales of oil to buy weapons, to build housing, roads, and communications networks, and to improve education. Soon Libya had become one of the major military powers of North Africa.
In 1983, Libya began sending aid to “revolutionary” groups in Arab countries. For some time Qaddafi had criticized the United States and Egypt for their policies toward Israel; the Libyan congress even called for armed attacks against Israel and its supporters....
(The entire section is 819 words.)
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