1969: Col. Moammar Gadhafi (right), two years before he seized power in a coup. He and a group of revolutionary army officers ended the 18-year reign of King Idris.
1977: Gadhafi bonds with Palestinian leaders Yasser Arafat (right) and George Habash at an Arab Nations Summit in Tripoli. In the 1970s, Gadhafi pushed for uniting all Arab states into one and published his political manifesto, The Green Book.
1986: A bed in Gaghafi's Tripoli home after U.S. planes bombed Libya's capital. Gadhafi was not injured, but 100 people reportedly died. The U.S. said it was retaliating for the bombing of a Berlin nightclub that killed two American servicemen and a Turkish woman.
1988: Investigators sift through the wreckage of Pan Am Flight 103, which exploded midair over Lockerbie, Scotland. The 270 dead included everyone on the plane and 11 on the ground. Libya did not officially take responsibility for the bombing until 2003.
1996: Surrounded by guests and aides in Tripoli, Gadhafi marks the anniversary of the 1969 coup that brought him to power.
1998: Gadhafi speaks at a press conference about the potential handover of two Libyan suspects in the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103. The men were turned over the following year; one was convicted.
2004: Gadhafi visits the European Union in Brussels — his first official trip outside Africa or the Middle East since 1989. The trip marked another step in Gadhafi's quest to remake his image after years of international sanctions. In 2003, he agreed to give up his unconventional weapons program and to compensate relatives of Lockerbie bombing victims.
2008: Russia's Vladimir Putin (center) meets with Gadhafi (right) in Tripoli. Putin spent two days in Libya on an official visit to rebuild Russian-Libyan relations.
Artyom Korotayev/Epsilon/Getty Images/NPR
2009: Gadhafi finishes an hour-and-a-half speech during his first visit to the United Nations in New York. His speech came shortly after he welcomed back to Libya the man convicted in the Pam Am bombing, who'd been released from prison on medical grounds.
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2009: Gadhafi poses with (from left) Italy's Silvio Berlusconi, France's Nicolas Sarkozy, Russia's Dmitry Medvedev, Barack Obama of the United States and United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon during a G8 summit in Italy.
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2010: Gadhafi delivers a speech behind bulletproof glass in Benghazi, Libya, in 2010, calling for a jihad against Switzerland because of its ban on mosque minarets.
Abdel Magid Al Fergany/AP/NPR
Feb. 24, 2011: Libyan nationals protest Gadhafi's regime in front of a building housing the Libyan embassy in Washington, D.C. Anti-government protests in Libya sparked a bloody crackdown by Gadhafi as opposition forces took control of the country's eastern half.
Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images/NPR
March 2, 2011: Protected by bulletproof glass, Gadhafi leaves a Tripoli celebration of the 34th anniversary of establishing a "republic of the masses" in Libya. Weeks of anti-government protests have escalated into rebel forces clashing with pro-Gadhafi supporters for control of cities along the Libyan coast.