Ayesha Gaddafi, in a speech before hundreds of supporters, in the bombed out ruins of a building on her father's compound, said: "When I was a 9 year old , in this house, a rain of missiles and bombs came down. They (US) tried to kill me. After 25 years, the same missiles, the same bombs are raining down on our children's head."
Ayesha was refering to an incident in April 15, 1986 when US Stealth bombers bombed Gaddafiscompound, killing several people that day, including members of his immediate and extended family. Oddly Ayesha has come to symbolize that.
In 1986 a photographer caught the image of a little barefoot girl emerging from the rubble and chasing after the planes, cursing them. She was photographed holding her fist at US warplanes circling over head.
That little girl was later identified as the daughter of Mu'ummar Gaddafi Ayesha, who was also pretty seriously injured in the attack.
DEA JA VU - ALL OVER AGAIN!
Fast forward 25 years, and the young girl has become a young woman. Who has developed a reputation all her own. Ayesha Gaddafi was appointed as the United Nations Development Program National Goodwill Ambassador for Libya - primarily to address the issues of HIV/AIDS, poverty and womens rights in LIbya, all of which are culturally sensitive topics in the country in February 2011. By all accounts she was doing real good, but was fired anyway?
Because of her ardent support of her father Ayesha has been placed on a travel ban on February 26, 2011. Sort of like a "exile in reverse", meaning you are unable to leave the country for any reason, not because of what you did, so much, as who you are. Which is extremely unfair to a woman who has survived two attempts to kill her already by the United States and would probably like to get her children out of the country where she knowns they would be safe. Apparently the UN won't allow her to do that.
For there part US Defense officals who refused to say if we are targeting Ayesha Gaddafi or not?
In the speech on Friday, she openly denounced NATO attempts to "protect civilians by bombing them". She reminded the crowd of people who was bombing them, namely the United States, Britian and France. In tears, at one point she expressed fear for her children's safety, as the crowd of hunbdreds of supporters shouted anti American slogans.
Strangly enough she blamed al-Qaida as the cause of the unrest, and the attack on the oil refinery pipeline, and reminded Libyan's that they are in a life and death struggle right now against not only al-Qaida "our mortal enemy" but NATO and the United States as well.
It's been reported that al-Qaida faction in Libya have taken advantage of US bombing to hit armories, police stations, and in at least one case a bank. Other militants may have seized man packed portable air launch missiles. The fear is that these missiles could fall into the hands of terrorists outside Libya to target commerical aircaft. A fact not reported in the entertainment based media in the US or Europe.
Many people in Libya are also asking "for what crime is Ayesha accused of besides being his daughter?" Which is a real good question? We could find only "ad hominem" attacks directed against her being his daughter.
She is not accused of killing anyone, or condoning it for that matter. It's odd they should want to paint a target on her back or try and kill her.
They basically hate her for who she is! Which is the ultimate form of discrimination for a woman who has fought her whole life for selfish causes.
Some say she routinely presents herself to her father on regular occasions to beg on behalf of others in need. She has been said to be secretly working behind the scenes with Turkey and other nations for a cease fire arrangement. Which she maintains is the only real way, she says "to protect civilians because you first have to get all side to first agree to stop killing people before you can proceed to the ultimate goal of peace."
She of course, is right!
What US military officials fail to appreciate or understand is that the daughter is not like the father. It is a mistake to target her!
Interestingly enought some analysts suspect she may be the key figure to brokering a peace deal with Gaddafi right now.
Others suggest she could very well emerge as a new power player in the region.
Ayesha is by all accounts a brilliant lawyer, public speaker and human rights advocate. She is also immensely popular among the Libyan people and those who know her.
Should she be killed by US led NATO bombing runs it will be public relations nightmare for the United States in more ways than one.