Thursday, October 20, 2011

US Drone/French fighter helped corner fleeing Muammar Qaddafi

A U.S. Predator drone was involved in the airstrike on Muammar Qaddafi's convoy Thursday in the moments before his death, a U.S. defense official told Fox News.

The official said the drone, along with a French fighter jet, fired on the "large convoy" leaving Qaddafi's hometown of Sirte. A French defense official earlier said about 80 vehicles were in the convoy -- the official said the strike did not destroy the convoy but that fighters on the ground afterward intercepted the vehicle carrying Qaddafi.

He was later killed, reportedly in the crossfire between Qaddafi supporters and opponents as he was being transferred.

Libyan strongman Muammar Qaddafi was confirmed dead on Thursday, captured near his hometown of Sirte. Here is a look back at how the "king of kings of Africa" came to an end.

President Obama and other officials would not elaborate on the circumstances of Qaddafi's death. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said only that U.S. and NATO actions helped Libyans reach this point.

But as some lawmakers continued to criticize the administration for its handling of the Libya operation, Obama pointed to the end of the Qaddafi regime as the close of a "long and painful chapter" for Libyans and defended the multilateral mission which began in March.

"Today we can definitively say that the Qaddafi regime has come to an end," Obama said. "This is a momentous day in the history of Libya."

Obama, speaking in the Rose Garden, said of Libyans, "You have won your revolution."
Obama said the NATO mission would soon be over; if so, the use of a Predator drone Thursday would mark a fitting end for U.S. involvement.


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