Either way he became a legend in his own time. Thursday on the Progressive Radio News Hour, James Petras reported information he received from a reliable Argentina source saying he's dead.
If so, he explained, he'll be Africa's greatest martyr since Congo's Patrice Lumumba. After leading its independence struggle successfully in June 1960, a CIA coup ousted him 10 weeks later.
Joseph Mobutu replaced him, renaming the country Zaire. Looting billions until his 1997 removal, he ran it like a kleptocracy.
January 17, 2011 marked the 50th anniversary of Lumumba's late night firing squad assassination. Belgium and Washington ordered it. At issue was his fierce opposition to Western colonialism. It cost him his life.
He and two associates, Maurice Mpolo and Joseph Okito, were tied to trees and murdered in cold blood. To escape culpability, Belgium exhumed them, dismembered, and dissolved their body parts in acid.
Belgium ruled Congo until 1960. Until his 1909 death, King Leopold II ran it like his private plantation. In his book, "King Leopold's Ghost: A Story of Greed, Terror, and Heroism in Colonial Africa," Adam Hochschild wrote:
"....(U)nlike other great predators of history from Genghis Khan to the Spanish conquistadors, King Leopold II never saw a drop of blood spilt in anger. He never set foot in the Congo. There is something very modern about that, too, as there is about the bomber pilot in the stratosphere, above the clouds, who never hears screams or sees shattered homes or torn flesh."
In his journey into the "Heart of Darkness," Joseph Conrad wrote:
"(O)ne comes to hate those savages....hate them to death....Exterminate all the brutes!" Based on what he saw in Congo, he called it "the vilest scramble for loot that ever disfigured the history of human conscience."
He held all Europe responsible. Fifty years ago, Lumumba was a latter day victim. Dead or alive, Gaddafi's his modern day equivalent. If alive, he's a living legend. If not, he's bigger than life, a symbol of imperial resistance, inspiring millions of Libyans to keep struggling for freedom.
Western media, Al Jazeera and other sources reported his death. On October 20, New York Times writers Kareen Fahim and Rick Gladstone headlined, "Qaddafi Is Dead, Libyan Officials Say," saying:
Al Jazeera and other media showed a corpse said to be Gaddafi. Unidentifiable it could be anyone. A circulating video claims to show his capture. It's so jumbled, it's impossible to tell. Al Jazeera, Western media, and NATO repeatedly lied throughout the conflict. Nothing they report is credible.
Reliable independent sources will have to confirm whether Gaddafi's alive or dead. Past reports about Gaddafi sons dead or captured proved false when they turned up safe and alive.
"Libyans rejoiced as news of his death spread," wrote The Times, "as residents poured into the streets to celebrate."
Well over 90% of Libyans support Gaddafi. Some polls suggest up to 97%. NATO, puppet Transitional National Council (TNC) leaders, and rebel cutthroats are reviled.
Why else would Jamahiriya loyalists contest NATO's ferocity courageously for seven months. They want to live free and won't quit. Alive, Gaddafi leads them inspirationally. Martyred for a just cause even more so.
Conflicting reports suggest, but don't confirm, Gaddafi's death. Xinhuanet.com headlined, "NATO launches air raids in Sirte on Thursday: spokesman," saying:
In early morning, two military vehicles were struck "maneuvering in the vicinity of Sirte," according to NATO.
It couldn't confirm if Gaddafi was in one. A TNC commander claimed he was killed trying to flee Sirte. NATO didn't confirm if he's dead or captured.
In Tripoli for a staged photo-op, Hillary Clinton said, "We hope (Gaddafi) will be captured or killed soon."
A NATO official told Xinhua it's for TNC officials to confirm Gaddafi's status, "not the military alliance."
NATO "repeatedly said (he's) not a target of its campaign in Libya, which aims to protect civilians."
For months, NATO ravaged Libya and massacred tens of thousands. Some protection!
Xinhua also said TNC spokesman Mahmoud Shamman couldn't confirm reports of Gaddafi's capture or death.
Moreover, State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland told Xinhua that Washington "cannot confirm at this time" news about him.
In addition, NATO press releases say nothing. By mid-evening October 20, a disingenuous statement said:
"After 42 years, Colonel Qadhafi's rule of fear has finally come to an end. Libya can draw a line under a long dark chapter in its history and turn over a new page. Now the people of Libya can truly decide their own future."
"NATO and our partners have successfully implemented the historic mandate of the United Nations to protect the people of Libya. We will terminate our mission in coordination with the United Nations and the National Transitional Council."
NATO lied. The struggle to free Libya continues. Libya's "dark chapter" began when NATO's killing machine arrived. Jamahiriya loyalists won't ever quit until they're free.
On October 20, Mathaba.net headlined, "Rumours of Muammar Qaddafi Spread by NTC for Hillary Clinton," saying:
NATO, imperial Washington, Western media, Al Jazeera, Al-Arabia, and other sources first claimed Gaddafi was captured, then reported his death.
"Green Committees have confirmed that the leader is alive, and that the enemy is seeking to take advantage of his being currently out of communications."
They want "to please Hillary Clinton who barked at her Arab slaves that she wants (Gaddafi) 'dead or alive.' "
Reliable analysts told Mathaba that reports of his death hope to demoralize Libyan resistance. They also want to elicit Gaddafi's response to pinpoint his location.
"The Secretary-General of the International People's Conference Organization told Mathaba that (another aim is) to perpetuate the myth that the NTC controls all of Libya," not the Jamahiriya.
They can't declare a new government and secure billions of dollars in stolen Libyan wealth until the country's pacified, even if they have to fake it.
Libya's Jamahiriya "remains the only legitimate government because it rests squarely upon the Libyan people" who support it.
Mathaba and NSNBC repeatedly said NATO desperately needs a victory. So do major media scoundrels caught red-handed reporting lies. Accounts of Gaddafi's death may or may not be their latest.
Responding once to reports of his death, Mark Twain once said in more detail that "Reports of my death were greatly exaggerated."
Maybe Gaddafi will say it soon about himself. Further updates will report whatever else is known.
A Final Comment
With reliable Libyan sources, https://twitter.com/#!/SomaliaSupport provides a running account of events in Libya.
"Today in Bani Walid were killed 160 rats (rebels) and 270 wounded. The rats in Sirte raised the white flag. Hard losses of rats in Sirte."
TNC officials, Western media scoundrels and Al Jazeera falsified reports about rebels controlling Sirte.
SomaliaSupport2 reported: "Two NATO French rats were killed in Abu Salime. One of them was a member of NATO HQ. Confirmed."
Diana: "Victory or martyrdom. There is no third option."
SomaliaSupport: "My dear brother, this is a fight not only for Libya but the whole mankind. The people must know that fact."
Diana: "From October 1, 2011 till now, there is a massive deratization by Green broom. About 10,000 rates have been killed in Libya."
This link (http://counterpsyops.com/) contains a message Gaddafi reportedly recorded today, including fake images. Translated it says:
"Thank you for all who called to see how I am and ask about me. I am fine and live somewhere no one can find me. I live in every one's heart. If you kill my body you can't kill my soul which lives in every Libyan. The long life for the martyr and the bad life for all who betray their country."
NATO claims it concluded its operations successfully. Believe nothing its spokespeople, political Washington or media scoundrels report.
Believe your instincts and information from reliable independent web sites and other sources.
The struggle to free Libya continues.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.