They bombed Libyan TV ‘to try to silence the Libyan masses’ – SAYS GADAFFI

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The devastated headquarters of Belgrade TV during the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia in 1999
The devastated headquarters of Belgrade TV during the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia in 1999

LIBYAN state Al-Jamahiriyah TV opened its first regular news broadcast (0830 gmt) on Saturday 30 July with a report showing damage caused to the state TV building in Tripoli by overnight NATO air strikes. The report made no mention of any casualties.

NATO had said earlier that it had conducted ‘a precision air strike that disabled three ground-based Libyan state TV satellite transmission dishes in Tripoli’.

A NATO officer said that the bombing of the TV station was part of the UN mandate for Nato to protect civilians.

In fact NATO is frightened of the truth about the growing collapse of its operation.

However, BBC Monitoring continued to receive state TV channels through both the Libyan-controlled Rascom QAF 1R and Egyptian-owned Nilesat satellites, as usual.

The Al-Jamahiriyah newsreader said, expanding on a previous report from the state news agency Jana: ‘A military source has said that the colonialist crusader NATO bombed civilian locations in Tripoli in the early hours of this morning, Saturday 30 July, and that this is part of the systematic genocide operation and crimes against humanity that it is perpetrating against the Libyan people, where the building of the Libyan Great Jamahiriyah Broadcasting Corporation was subjected to this bombing.

‘The source said that this aggression will only increase the great Libyan people’s union with the leader Mu’ammar al-Gadaffi, and that God is above the deception of the aggressors (line from the national anthem).’

The report then went on to show about 13 minutes of video of the damage captioned: ‘Colonialist crusader bombs a number of civilian locations in the city of Tripoli in the early hours of today Saturday’.

Above this, the words ‘Building of the Great Jamahiriyah Broadcasting Corporation’ were later added.

The camera roamed around the interior of a building focusing on damage: broken glass and furniture, blown-out windows and ceiling tiles, holes in walls, a sign on an office saying ‘corporation clinic’ and what appeared to be the interior of a prayer room.

The staff of the TV station later broadcast a message saying that they were not part of the Libyan military and had every right to broadcast the news and the truth about the NATO operation.

A TV official said: ‘Nato is so obviously frightened of the truth and we will carry on telling it.’

He said that three technicians had been killed in the NATO bombing and 13 wounded.

In fact, the Libyan leader Colonel Gadaffi made two TV addresses on Saturday after the bombing.

In the second, in the evening to the masses in Tarhunah, he said: ‘This is an evening of defiance and confrontation for you, the sons of proud and free Tarhunah, which destroyed the armies of Italy, and today prepares to destroy the armies of NATO.

‘We are determined to destroy this unjust campaign and face this war which was imposed upon us unjustly and maliciously, while we were in our houses, our homes, peacefully.

‘They want to occupy our country, kill our children, destroy our country, and take our children’s food.

‘They want to take a liberty with Libya, but that is impossible, even if we were martyred one million after another.

‘Let the West listen, let the hegemonic, barbaric NATO listen, we are prepared to sacrifice one million after another, rather than be shamed and forced to surrender.

‘Here in Tarhunah, another million-man march; how many of the Libyan people remain who have not taken to the squares and streets? Supporting the revolution, the great Al-Fatih Revolution, challenging NATO, gathering around the historic leadership of the great Al-Fatih Revolution.

‘What remains of the Libyan people who have not taken to the squares, apart from less than 100,000, forced to stay in their homes in Benghazi and Darnah, forced under the threat of machine guns.

‘This Libyan people, all 6m of them, took to the squares and streets to shout out loud, we are with the great Al-Fatih, the great Al-Fatih Revolution, the power of the people, the power of the people, freedom, dignity and pride.

‘We live free or all become martyrs, to the last one. These are the millions which have taken to the streets. Who represents the Libyan people? There is no representation of the Libyan people.

‘These demonstrations will shut them up, these million-man marches will shut them up, they have shut them up to an extent where they tried to silence them by bombing Libyan radio, so that they would not hear the voices of the masses, and so that the world would not see the pictures of the millions in the streets and squares, raising the green flags, defying and confronting.

‘They wanted to hide these pictures of millions from the world. They wanted to hide my voice from the world, my voice however is in your hearts, in your ears, and will always stay deep-rooted inside you.

‘These masses, if they marched on the city of Misratah, within hours, within hours, Misratah will be liberated and the families of Misratah, which are held captive, and the children of Misratah who have been taken by the non-believer, the traitors and the mercenaries as human shields, barricades.

‘Children, now, in the streets of Misratah, in the buildings of Misratah, used as barricades by the traitors, the mercenaries, the non-believers, and now they have been found out, even NATO discovered that the non-believers were the ones behind the events in Libya and that Benghazi was controlled by non-believers. On this occasion I would like to tell you our soldiers, the special forces’ soldiers in Benghazi and the soldiers of the Al-Fadil Brigade are now in a battle against the non-believers and the mercenaries and against the traitors, and the masses are moving in Benghazi.

‘The 7-April Camp has been liberated, and the revolutionaries have been freed and are now released. Forward soldiers of the special forces, soldiers of the Al-Fadil Brigade and its free officers, wipe up the shame, wipe up the shame of Benghazi clean. Let the masses gather and let them go with their brave soldiers, so that Libya would be like it was, free, dignified and proud, rich, at ease, living in peace and security.

‘Put out these fires and stop this bloodshed. If these masses in Tarhunah marched on Misratah, the battle would be over within hours, and NATO would be completely finished and leave this arena, and Misratah would be liberated.

‘The families of Misratah, the people of Misratah, our people in Misratah are crying for help. They mutilate the dead bodies. They kill them, they sever women’s breasts in Misratah by their own shameful admission.

‘Let the masses march, this is their time, even without arms, the masses march will be victorious. These are the revolutionary youths, the free women. Brigades of women trained on weapons ready to march and fight.

‘However, a march like this from Tarhunah, if it set off now, unarmed, Misratah would be liberated, and the traitors and the agents would be captured and they would surrender immediately.

‘How many messages have we sent them? How many warnings have we given them? How many grace periods? Misratah will not be left just like that.

‘Let Tarhunah march and let Bin Walid march and let Zlitan march. Even without arms, we want to rescue our people in Misratah, our city Misratah. Forward, forward, forward, forward, look at our children, showing truthfulness, loyalty, resolve and determination.

‘Forward, forward and the season’s greetings.’

Libyan state television, LIBTV, interrupted its programme at 1544 gmt Saturday to allow for the following announcement: ‘Dear viewers, you are welcome. We have just received the following.

‘Reliable sources have learnt that the family of Mansur al-Ubaydat in Darnah had attacked the Al-Qaeda elements there, forced them to leave the town for the valley, and were continuing to chase them.

‘It has also been learned from the same reliable sources that the commandos had advanced on the 7 April camp in the town of Benghazi, cleared it up of the Al-Qaeda members in it and established total control over it.

‘Moreover, a crowd of citizens supportive of the Jamahiri system in the town of Tubruq have seized naval military boats belonging to the council of treason (National Transitional Council) and steered them towards the headquarters of the military zone to which they belonged. They also seized a large quantity of weapons at that site.

‘A number of citizens in the town of Tubruq also attacked the house of the so-called Umar al-Hariri, opened fire at it and destroyed several cars.

‘This is everything we have so far. We go back now to follow the general programme.’

More bombing attacks are expected on Libyan TV stations in Tripoli.