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Monday, February 27, 2012

The Strike on Khamis' Convoy: Really?

February 27, 2012

When it was reported (but then denied) that Muammar Gaddafi's most militant son, Khamis, was captured alive recently, it seemed time to revisit the last time he was declared dead. Six months earlier almost to the day, in late August/early September of last year, he was reported killed in a rebel strike on his retreating convoy just after the fall of Tripoli.

Al-Fargi's Account
Allegedly, this strike came right after his father and Libya's onetime symbolic leader Muammar Gaddafi and parts of his core family met at Khamis' Yarmouk military base and fled from Tripoli. That was August 26, one week into the rebel assault on the capitol, four days after they claimed 90% of the city, three days after the alleged massacre of over 150 prisoners there, and about the same exact time rebels finally acknowledge holding the Yarmouk base itself (or, as the clues suggest, three days after the rebels violently took the base).

This is according to a baby-faced teenage captive who was presented to Richard Pendlebury of the UK Daily Mail, for an article run September2: "The car was armoured like a tank. But that wasn't enough to save Gaddafi's son Khamis when the rebels took their vengeance." Seventeen-year-old Abdul Salam Taher al-Fargi is described as "a child of the southern desert," who "has witnessed history.” So he says, anyway. (Photo of al-Farji speaking with Pendlebury)

In his story, he was the youngest recruit to Khamis Gaddafi’s bodyguard, picked for his youth, innocence, possibly his big hair, and his origin in the Loyalist town of Sabha. His very recruitment handily proved the desperation of the dying regime. Al-Fargi was given three days’ training shooting a gun, then sent to Tripoli with big promises following victory. He survived days of fighting “around Green Square and in the Bosleem [Abu Salim] district.” Pendlebury continues:
Then, on Thursday last week [Aug.25], when it was clear that the regime was finished, he was summoned along with other hand-picked soldiers to Khamis’s compound in the Salahuddin district.

The soldiers stayed there overnight. Then, on Friday, things began to happen. A Hyundai saloon arrived through the front gate and out got the ‘King of Kings himself’ — the nation’s leader — in a flowing robe and desert headdress. With Gaddafi Snr was his daughter Aisha, said Abdul.

The father spoke to Khamis and then left with Aisha in a military vehicle.

Another brother, Saadi, was reported as also having been in their convoy.

Abdul and his comrades were given lunch, then Khamis told them to get ready to go to Bani Walid. They would be meeting another brother, Mutassim, there.

The 60-vehicle convoy left Tripoli at around 4.30pm, Abdul recalls. Khamis was travelling in a heavily-armoured Toyota Land Cruiser.
This base is apparently the Yarmouk one, the only base of the 32nd brigade in the Salaheddin district, and among their two largest in the Tripoli area. Khamis had reportedly been there three days before when he ordered that 150 prisoners in the shed out back should be killed.

4:30 on Friday the 26th is apparently just ahead of, or even just behind, the photographer Daniel Berehulak who followed the rebels into Yarmouk. His set of eight photos of the shed massacre site are dated August 26 and, by the angle of sunlight seen (this image is the best help), it was mid-late afternoon - anywhere from about 4:00 to as late as 6:00PM (time analysis, uncertain, discussed here).

Further, it's about four hours after the rebels finally conquered the base, according to the unnamed fighter who spoke to Human Rights Watch. He said they entered the base around noon on the 26th, and to prove it, said that's when they first smelled and then saw the burning remains in the shed. At the same time, we're to accept, the Gaddafi family themselves were enjoying lunch alongside that smell some feet away, and then casually departed four hours later, before it was too late!

Just past Tahouna, near Bani Walid, an ammunition truck in Khamis' convoy was hit by rebels, Pendlebury was told, leaving a smashed bed that looks to me like a NATO bomb hit it from above. Photo of ammunition truck

Pendlebury described the convoy's last mission so:
What would appear to be happening is a fighting retreat, to buy time for the Gaddafis to escape into the desert wastes. Some regime forces have already left Bani Walid and moved to Sofe Aljane, 50 miles further south. Gaddafi himself is also thought to have gone.
Abdul al-Farji was with them. He said:
‘We were told the road was clear, and my pick-up truck was sent forward to make sure it was,’ said Abdul, who was manning a heavy machine gun mounted on the back.
‘We ran straight into rebel vehicles. I opened fire first and they shot back.’
But as the driver of his own vehicle tried to turn away from the rebel positions, Abdul lost his footing, fell out and was captured.
The last time he saw Khamis’s vehicle it was on fire, but still moving slowly.
The jeep apparently was hit too, but the kid survived, because he fell off of it. He was captured and told his story like so. The witness seems quite confident, open, and eager to explain all he saw and knew. He said he had been misled about the kind rebels, but now wanted to help them, and he was. And they were kind, to him.
It is clear, though, that Abdul has become something of a pet for the rebels. As we talked, another colonel came in, ruffled his hair, pinched his cheek and kissed him.
‘We are all one country,’ he beamed. ‘And this is still a Libyan child.’
It was the convoy battle by Tahouna that proved the kid was right, Khamis was in that convoy, and he didn’t come out alive, so was presumed among the charred dead. Pendlebury added:
The rebel colonel describes the demise of the dictator’s son. ‘His vehicle was well protected, but we hit it with a 23mm gun and it burned,’ he said.
I viewed the charred and melted remains of the Toyota by the side of the empty road. The glass was almost an inch thick and the armour on the doors would not have disgraced a tank. The bodywork did not appear to have been penetrated. 
Photo of the armored Land Crusier.

Does it add up well?

Other Evidence for Khamis'Death


  1. Some pics and thoughts about the Tarhouna Nato attack on 28 aug 2011 , that would have killed Khamees

    Tarhouna was before this attack already fond of Nato :
    tarhouna nato tweet

    tarhouna : a convoy attacked
    معركة ترهونة المعركة التي قتل فيها خميس القذافي



  2. car of Khamees as showed by vids on top and by sky reporter


    definitely not same car Khamees


  3. Then there was another vid with a battle @ yarmouk

    these pics are from this deleted vid : “ day of liberation yarmouk “

    must be between 22 aug and 26 aug , as the telesur vid reporter proofs

    مقطع فيديو لجتت تلاته عناصر من افراد كتائب القدافي التي كانت متمركزة في اللواء 32 معزز في منطقة خلة الفرجان الواقعه في جنوب غرب طرابلس العاصمة و كما يبين المقطع احدى الجتت متفحمه و الاخرى مصابة بطلق ناري اتر اشتباكات وقعت بين جيش التوار و كتائب القدافي التي كانت تحرس المعسكر .

    inside dry bed 26 aug

    1. Then there was another vid with a battle @ yarmouk


      this vid seems related

    2. That's another base at the 27th gate on the western edge of Tripoli.Looks like nothing happening,as usual,to make out rebels took over the city, not NATO.

    3. Yes, to confirm , Compare here at 1.02 onwards in your link (wrongly labelled Yarmouk) with Alex Crawford reporting from the Khamis Base (27th km Gate west) 21/8/2011 for Sky. Same entrance.

  4. For me the remarks [ slip of the tongue?] of this reporter are intriguing :
    Reporter Andrew Raven/Reuters : The base was override at tuesday [ = 23 aug] , the day tripoli felt

    As can be noticed from some pics on top :
    the bodies attacked by missiles have much similarity with the bodies seen in the shed.

    The shed tale is very inconsequent : if bodies start burning in the shed At 23 aug the whole area would stink a lot and rajub who lives 200 mtr from the shed nor another neighbour did mention smelling something

    Also the grenade story stinks : grenades explode , so there should be building damage too. [Even the roof of the corridor , that lasted there all the time , just was disappeared when the “what happened in yarmouk” story teller did visit there , telling he was hanged on the iron structure bearing the roof there many times].

    If there is a new generation of grenades that can do imploding damage : do they then cause fire and does tissue burn 4 or 5 days?
    May be remains without tissue were brought inside?

    1. That's a score, thanks.

      I have that video saved and took screen caps but never paid attention to the narration. He says it was overrun on Tuesday, doesn't he? From people he talked to, this came. Who did he talk to? He shows the bearded man, 1:11, sitting, then posing with the the eagle, whom I recognize as the guy patting "mercenaries" on the head for AT's video.

      There is damage consistent enough with bullets and grenades. The walls are chipped all over. They wouldn't cause structural damage. But the timeline isn't adding up. The damage was probably just faked, or possiblysome of the soldiers were hiding in here and killed with guns and grenades.

    2. and the Nigerian man with the orange shirt leaving via the eagle entrance

    3. Is he another rebel "actor"? Must be a popular vest design, because a different person had one on , dead, in one of the roundabout field hospital tents...

    4. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x6RIbI1dQzk&feature=related
      Libya. Rebels battle Gaddafi loyalists in Tripoli Aug 24 11.

      Libyans rebels were hoping to make the final push to flush out forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi inside his massive Tripoli compound on Wednesday (August 24).

      After storming through the back gate of the compound on Monday, rebels forced soldiers and fighters to the other side and fought them on the road just outside the main gate and near the Rixos hotel, where journalists invited by Gaddafi were still holed up.
      "This is the situation now, we are under fire. They are cowards. Look, this is the airport road. Look out Mohammed!" says one rebel at the front line.
      After pounding the positions of the Gaddafi troops rebels said they were pushing through the forest.
      They called for reinforcements.

      Many of the rebels in and around the compound had arrived from Misrata using the road through Ghayan, south of Tripoli.

  5. I don't think this story is related but there is a small link with 153 bodies
    by number and some similarities in the story :

    The group Human Rights Watch reported it had interviewed 53 people who had been detained by rebels in Tripoli during the uprising that began in February. The group said many told of, and showed signs of being beaten or tortured, The New York Times reported.

    The alleged abuses occurred in Tripoli within the last month after rebels under the auspices of the National Transitional Council overran the capital and sent Gadhafi into hiding.
    Read more: http://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2011/10/01/Libyan-rebels-accused-of-torture/UPI-37931317475687/#ixzz1nUis8NV1

  6. Only days before Moammar Qaddafi was murdered, Libya 360°, a site which had been pro-Jamahiriya, confirmed that Khamis was dead (http://libya360.wordpress.com/2011/10/15/confirmed-khamis-gaddafi-martyred/). The website has just reiterated this claim: “KHAMIS GADDAFI WAS MARTYRED AUGUST 29, 2011” (http://libya360.wordpress.com/2012/02/26/khamis-gaddafi-has-not-been-captured/).

    If one favors the Jamahiriya, what was the gain in confirming Khamis’ death? Well, a pro-Qaddafi editor might confirm Khamis’ death—or her sources may have offered such confirmation—wanting to protect a living Khamis. If the enemies thought he was dead, presumably they would stop looking for him.

    But maybe Libya 360°’s editor confirmed his death because she’s a phony supporter of the Jamahiriya and wanted to discourage the resistance or its supporters. I’ve been following the site for months, and I’ve noticed, oddly, that pro-regime-change pieces are included without comment. All the editor does is give the piece an anti-regime-change title.

    Probably, though, she’s an occasionally lazy editor and not a stealth NATO fan.

    That the “rebels” befriended the 17-year-old boy—how can we read that propaganda without puking? Indeed, how do we know this kid wasn’t a “rebel” all along? The excerpted MSM story is not credible.

    If Khamis were blown up, I doubt the Libyans did it; I’d put my money on NATO. Western press incessantly minimizes NATO’s role to “backing the rebels with airstrikes,” when NATO power, especially from the air, essentially destroyed the Jamahiriya government. (Chapters 2 and 3 in General Wesley Clark’s Winning Modern Wars describe how American and British air power obliterated Iraqi forces in 2003. This description puts NATO’s 2011 airstrikes into clearer context.)


    Art Bethea

    PS: A retro spin on Lockerbie is emerging: NEW EVIDENCE (much of which isn’t new) EXONERATES MEGRAHI, who should not have been convicted in the first place. Surprise, surprise, the blame is once against directed toward the original suspects, the Iranians, the west’s target after Syria. The article includes excerpts from John Ashton’s Megrahi: You Are My Jury. See http://libya360.wordpress.com/2012/02/27/lockerbie-new-evidence-exonerates-libya/

    1. May be this gives you some other view on alexandra ?
      Ali Zeidan self-appointed spokesperson from the Libyan League for Human Rights

      the assaults on libiya 360 started with the ICC schisma ,bc L360 choosed from 2 bad options the option ICC, so Zaief has a chance to stay alive

    2. btw : I have the feeling too that Khamees has been killed by Nato , but imho not in Tarhouna on 29 , but in the last battles in Tripoli , dated between 22 and 25 aug.
      This might have taken place near the base Yarmouk, or near the airport, where a small village near by aired missiles to the airport on 24 aug, or in some area in abu saleem [ mashrour? fire station]on 25 aug

  7. I think, that he has been killed somewhere much later official date of death. When video with the searched car of his brother Mutassim emerged on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mO4c4Dtg2Sk&feature=player_embedded), there was ID cards of Khamis in the wallet. I think we may safely presume that he himself left these documents to brother. It's not unusial in military to leave all clues to your identity behind before covert operation or smth. like that.
    One of papers carries the name "martyr" - and author of that video presumes it "the only tangible evidence that Khamis is not alive". I think that is a mistake, because nor issuance date was not written, not the cause or the place of death. I think we may safely presume that this paper was written by smb. in advance, without any strong clue or info of Khamis whereabouts.
    So, it looks like when Mutassim was captured (official date is 20.10, but I suspect it just one more lie and really this was much earlier), Khamis was alive or even his brother didn't know for sure, is he alive or not. Both possibilities don't fit in official picture with his death in the end of august.
    Later there was some interesting rumours - but it's just words, so I don't rely on them. Just for example, immediately after the killng of Muammar and Muatassim many people involved referred to m-me Safiya as "the widow of shaheed (martyr) and mother of 2 shaheeds", obviously meaning her husband and 2 sons. But if Khamis was already dead by Oct.,20, then THREE sons (Saif-al-Arab, Khamis and Mutassim) could be listed as shaheeds, and not TWO.
    But after all this there was the call of Aisha on Syrian TV, where she called all of them martyrs, so... I'm afraid it's the end of the story despite all "captured by Zintani, had a leg amputated" and other Tripoli Post-ed rubbish.

  8. For what it’s worth, “Libyan Free Press: Jamahiriya News” insists that Khamis is alive: “We have always held that the declaration of death of Kamis Gaddafi, like other members of his family, is only part of a campaign of psychological propaganda and that instead they are alive.”


    Art Bethea

  9. from a deleted vid
    مقطع فيديو لجتت تلاته عناصر من افراد كتائب القدافي التي كانت متمركزة في اللواء 32 معزز في منطقة خلة الفرجان الواقعه في جنوب غرب طرابلس العاصمة و كما يبين المقطع احدى الجتت متفحمه و الاخرى مصابة بطلق ناري اتر اشتباكات وقعت بين جيش التوار و كتائب القدافي التي كانت تحرس المعسكر .
    Does this car look alike the Ghamies car ?

  10. chasing the 53 trucks with mercenaries who passe here overnight


    the nato airstrikes made it impossible to defend this stronghold
    weapon store @ 2.02

    0.03 black t-shirt same one ? as in :

    This new popping up-Ramsay vid does raise some questions.
    The Yarmouk area was secured by the rebels on 26 aug.

    Some fighting was still going at that date in Ghargour [ the white - green buildings and maybe at the Fire station, Abu Sleem , but one can assume that it were civilians fighting for their lives against barbarians.

    Real militair fight in the last days was at Kasr bin Ghasir .

    If one assumes Khamees was involved in the fighting there :
    why should he and 53 trucks pass the overthrown yarmouk area heading south ?

  11. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/newsnight/9703046.stm
    nato killed 53 ppl in a building were the Colonel just entered a basement

    Saif Al-Islam Convoy Attacked in Beni-Walid, Libya, October, 2011

  12. Tom Rayner @RaynerSkyNews has some photos of molten metal in Khamis' Land Cruiser, and the burnt out tanker on Twitpic - see

    See the molten metal


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