GADDAFI AND THE FRENCH FIGHTER PLANES
Events that shaped the countries of the Mediterranean
An episode from the series ECHOES OF HISTORY
When Muammar Gaddafi takes power in Libya on September 1st, 1969, after a bloodless coup, he is only 27 years old but already has ambitions beyond his country's borders.
A few years earlier, France had declared an embargo on Israel, Gaddafi's sworn enemy. So quite naturally, he turns to the government of Georges Pompidou to obtain military equipment.
Why did Pompidou agree to deliver so many weapons to a young, inexperienced leadeŕ when France had taken a neutral stand on the Arab-Israeli conflict? How did French fighter planes end up on the battlefield of the Yom Kippur War?