40th anniversary of the Libyan Revolution

Coordinates: 32°53′14″N 13°11′29″E / 32.88722°N 13.19139°E / 32.88722; 13.19139
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40th anniversary of the Libyan Revolution
A poster of Gaddafi in Tripoli, on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the Libyan Revolution.
Tripoli is located in Libya
Location of the Libyan capital city of Tripoli, where the main celebratory events were held
Native name الذكرى الأربعون للثورة الليبية
Date1 September 2009; 14 years ago (2009-09-01)
Location Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
Coordinates32°53′14″N 13°11′29″E / 32.88722°N 13.19139°E / 32.88722; 13.19139

The 40th anniversary of the Libyan Revolution (Arabic: الذكرى الأربعون للثورة الليبية) was a ruby jubilee anniversary in the Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya celebrated on 1 September 2009 in honor of the 1969 Libyan coup d'état.[1][2][3][4][5]


Light show in Tripoli on 25 August.
A plane flying over Tripoli's Corinthia Hotel during an air show rehearsal on 30 August.

The coup, known officially as the al-Fateh Revolution or the 1 September Revolution, was carried out by group of Libyan Army officers led by Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, known as the Free Officers Movement. The goal of this group was to overthrow King Idris I. On 1 September, 70 officers and enlisted soldiers who mostly came from the Corps of Signals launched a seizure of the government in Benghazi and, within two hours, gained control of the entire national government. One of the coup plotters first actions were to abolish the Kingdom of Libya and proclaim the establishment of the Libyan Arab Republic. Institutions that were later created such as the Libyan People's Court were used to purge any remnants of the former regime. The coup, staged amidst the Arab Cold War, was the result of a continuous rise in ideologies such as Nasserism, Arab nationalism and Arab socialism throughout the Islamic and particularly the Arab world. The coup transformed the country into a military dictatorship under the Libyan Revolutionary Command Council, and later a socialist state or Jamahiriya.[6]


Military parade[edit]

A military parade of troops of the African Union and the Libyan Armed Forces took place on Green Square on 1 September.[7] This marked the first day of celebrations. Troops from foreign countries took part in the parade. Units that represented their country included: 154th Preobrazhensky Independent Commandant's Regiment (Russia),[8][9] 26-member contingent of the Serbian Armed Forces (Serbia).[10] Musical accompaniment was provided by the Armed Forces Band, who performed the national anthem, Allahu Akbar. Music was also provided by the bands of foreign states, including the Band of the 154th Preobrazhensky Regiment as well as the bands participating in the World Military Music Festival. For the foreign section of the parade, the bands performed Russian military marches, particularly the Preobrazhensky Regiment March, Hero and Farewell of Slavianka.

Military tattoo[edit]

The World Military Music Festival took place on 2 September as a military tattoo that saw the participation of military bands and cultural groups from 16 nations and 5 continents. It was presided by Gaddafi's son Mutassim in his position as National Security Advisor of Libya.[11]

Country Name Photo Name
  Algeria Republican Guard Band  Australia Rats of Tobruk Memorial Pipes & Drums
  Austria Military Music Band Tyrol  Egypt Egyptian Armed Forces Symphonic Band
  Ethiopia Ethiopian National Defence Force Band  France Music of the Foreign Legion (MLE)
  Italy Band of the Mechanized Brigade "Sassari", the Sbandieratori Gubbio and the Sbandieratori Sansepolcro  Kenya Waza Afrika Troupe
  Libya Joint Band of the Libyan Armed Forces  Malta Armed Forces of Malta Band
 Mexico Symphonic Band and Chorus of the Secretariat of the Navy of Mexico  New Zealand Pipes & Drums of Christchurch City
  Pakistan Pakistan Armed Forces Band  Russia EMERCOM Band and the Nalmes State Academic Dance Company
 Senegal Principal Band of the Senegalese Armed Forces  Tunisia Tunisian Army Band
 Ukraine Central Air Force Band  United Kingdom/ Wales Porth Tywyn Band

Each individual band and group had their own short performance before being brought together for massed finale. Performances included pipe band songs, the national anthem, and the massed bands leaving to a Russian tune. The performance took place on Green Square in front of an audience of invited guests and senior military officials and thousands of members of an incredibly appreciative general public.[11] The bands present also gave an additional impromptu street performance on the square.

Morocco was set to participate in the event, however withdrew after it learned that representatives of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic and the Polisario Front would be attending.[12]

Controversially, Somali pirate leader Mohamed "Afweyne" Abdi Hassan was invited to and attended the celebrations. Gaddafi frequently defended and politically supported the Somali pirates.[13][14]


Filipino President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo shakes hands with the Libyan Chargé d'affaires prior to leaving for Tripoli to attend the parade.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The Libyan revolution turns 40". archiv.eurotopics.net. 28 August 2009.
  2. ^ "At 40, Gaddafi's Libya Has Much to Celebrate – CSS Blog Network".
  3. ^ Michael Slackman (26 August 2009). "Chafing After 40 Years, Qaddafi Baffles the West". The New York Times. Retrieved 2 March 2022.
  4. ^ Rana Jawad (31 August 2009). "Gaddafi celebrates, Libyans contemplate". BBC News. Retrieved 3 March 2022.
  5. ^ "Libya marks anniversary of Gadhafi rule". CNN. 2 September 2009. Retrieved 3 March 2022.
  6. ^ "FACTBOX: Libya celebrates 40 years of Gaddafi rule". Reuters. 1 September 2009 – via www.reuters.com.
  7. ^ a b Pfeiffer, Tom (1 September 2009). "Hugs from Chavez as Gaddafi's Libya reaches 40". Reuters – via www.reuters.com.
  8. ^ "В Ливии празднуют День революции" – via amp.vesti.ru.
  9. ^ "Кремлевский караул примет участие в параде в Ливии". vesti.ru.
  10. ^ "40th anniversary of the Libyan revolution | Serbian Armed Forces". www.vs.rs.
  11. ^ a b "World Military Music Festival". CRAIG ROBERTS.
  12. ^ "Polisario After Gaddafi: The Price of Patronage | Al Akhbar English". 8 February 2013. Archived from the original on 8 February 2013. Retrieved 12 January 2022.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  13. ^ "The Rise and Fall of Somalia's Pirate King - By James M. Bridger | Foreign Policy". foreignpolicy.com. Archived from the original on 5 November 2013.
  14. ^ "Gaddafi's forty years in power celebrated with a 'gallery of grotesques'". Belfasttelegraph.
  15. ^ "40th Anniversary of Libyan Revolution | Asian Tribune". www.asiantribune.com.
  16. ^ "Saleh attends Libya celebration on Revolution Day". Almotamar. 1 September 2009. Retrieved 1 September 2022.
  17. ^ Libre, Diario. "Leonel reaches Libya for African Summit". www.diariolibre.com.
  18. ^ "Tadić attends Libyan revolution anniversary". B92.net.

External links[edit]