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September 23rd, 2009
09:02 AM ET

Gadhafi’s Trip to New York

Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi is in the U.S. for the first time in 40 years. He’s here for the U.N. General Assembly, is staying at an undisclosed location, and wants to receive visitors in a tent in Bedford, N.Y.

Until 3 years ago, the U.S. considered Gadhafi a sponsor of terrorism. And just last month, Gadhafi stirred up anger when he welcomed back the Libyan man convicted of the Pan Am Flight 103 bombing.

What do you think of all of this?
Post your comments here.


Filed under: Heidi Collins • Josh Levs • Tony Harris
soundoff (107 Responses)
  1. Dan

    It wouldn't at all surprise me if he is warmly welcomed by President Obama. Of course, after all, he renounced terrorism. This guy is pathetic.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:04 am |
  2. Dirk Peddler

    Wouldn't the first question be, how the heck did/will he get into our country? If we let him in, how can we deny him a place to stay? He shouldn't have been allowed in, in the first place.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:09 am |
  3. Glenna

    He should have never been allowed in the United States!!!

    September 23, 2009 at 9:10 am |
  4. Clark Maggitt

    it doesn't matter to me.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:10 am |
  5. William

    Revoke his Visa, and get him out of OUR country!!!!

    September 23, 2009 at 9:11 am |
  6. Glenna

    Everyone should get together and throw their shoes at him

    September 23, 2009 at 9:12 am |
  7. Joseph

    People need to understand that the United States is honored to have the United Nations headquartered here. Because of this we must suffer leaders of foreign nations that we don't like who come to be in attendance or speak. When Diplomats from other countries come to the UN or to D.C. they should at least be allowed to live somewhere, and if their customs suggest that they stay in a tent, so be it.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:12 am |
  8. Mike Armstrong TX.

    Theres a big fat worm in the big beutiful apple so dont eat the fruits of his words the devil speaks with a fork toung .

    September 23, 2009 at 9:12 am |
  9. Pete

    1st visitor will probably be Obama

    September 23, 2009 at 9:13 am |
  10. William

    Do we still have a president looking out for best interests?

    September 23, 2009 at 9:13 am |
  11. Scott Overmyer

    Grow up. This guy, as objectionable as he may be, is the leader of a member country of the United Nations. As such, he is entitled to attend meetings. There probably should be some "official" UN housing that people from these pariah states can use. Maybe a room in the YMCA would be good.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:13 am |
  12. Tom Hoffman

    Americans live too much in the past. The man has ceased efforts to acquire the bomb. He's a head of a state which is doing business with the US and should be treated as such.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:14 am |
  13. Peter Steep

    This irrational response to the visit by a head of state will only further the image around the world of the United States as being populated by paranoid fearful people. It's ridiculous and demeaning to the country. What are these people afraid of? The idea that Libya celebrated the release of al-Megrahi only underlines the level of misunderstanding. It's about time these protestors actually learned a little bit about Libya.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:14 am |
  14. Kenny

    How many innocent people did the Americans kill the last 8 years(By Accident Of Course).I'm sure the dead feel better about that.Look after your own reputation before you talk about how (EVIL) other countries are.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:17 am |
  15. glenn

    IT SEEMS TO HAVE BEEN LOST IN THE TIMELINES AND HISTORY PAN AM 103 WAS BOMBED BECAUSE THE u>s> NAVY SHOT DOWN A lIBAYAN AIRLINER

    September 23, 2009 at 9:17 am |
  16. William

    I'm tired of us being "Goody two shoes" to the world. Pete is right, Obama will be the first calling cardof the welcoming committee, becaused he already apologized to the world for Americans. Isn't the President supposed to be on our side?

    September 23, 2009 at 9:19 am |
  17. Cooper

    Do you really think it's about the terrorist and the airplane? I think it's about anyone who is a leader and brown. I'm sure if you asked those folks holding those signs--they couldn't even name the date, airline, or people who diead in the plane crash. Sad.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:20 am |
  18. William

    I feel bad Glenn.I guess you have forgotten 9/11...........................
    Apparently you too are a goody two shoe, and waltz to anything other then reality.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:22 am |
  19. James Nielsen

    I thought our country is at war to keep terrorists OUT? Why is a sponsor of terrorism, such as Gadhafi, being let in? Aren't sponsors of terrorism just as bad as terrorists themselves? What happened to "zero tolerance" to terrorism? Yet, we're supposed to believe that our government is trying to keep us safe? What a joke. It makes me sick that Obama would let this garbage into the U.S. just for a talk. I believe this action will make American people fear terrorist activity even more. I cannot believe that our own president is letting a known terrorist into our country. How are we, as Americans, supposed to believe in Obama's policies when he's allowing such a thing like this to happen?

    September 23, 2009 at 9:23 am |
  20. Phyllis G

    Holy Greetings!

    Galatians 3: 28 ; 1st John 3: 14 "He that loveth not his brother abideth in death.
    "Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him".

    A preacher at the Keswick Convention told us that Idi Amin treated he and his wife terribly and he hated him with a passion.
    One night he dreamt that he saw our Lord Jesus and He said "If Idi Amin was the only man on earth I would have died for him, so love Idi Amin, or STOP PREACHING.
    When he woke he was scared, stopped preaching, wrote a book "I Love Idi Amin", meant it, and went back to preach.
    He delivered a sermon on Hosea telling us what adulterers we all are, how "all we like sheep have gone astray", and the loving "I Wills" of the last 2 chapters of Hosea the Lord is saying daily to us.
    The message was so powerful and anointed that the whole congregation burst into tears.
    The question is, If there's an Idi Amin in our lives we had better straighten it out with Him (smile)

    “IN GOD WE TRUST’

    God made all things visible and invisible Colossians 1: 16; Psalm 33: 6; Isaiah 44: 24 so we are looking, hearing, touching, feeling God Who died for us in every thing, every day. He has given us a free WORLD (w=Trinity + lord) and offering a free Heaven to all those who worship Him, to become their Father and make them His children (Romans 8: 17 ; Revelation 21: 7.
    "In Him we live, and move, and have our being" Acts17:28
    "Without Me you can do nothing- St. John 15:5 : Hebrews 1:3

    He is the ‘I AM THAT I AM (Exodus 3: 14)
    Before Abraham was, I AM (John 8: 58)
    I AM the Bread of Life (John 6: 35)
    I AM the Light of the World (John 8: 12)
    I AM the Door (John 10: 9)
    I AM the Good Shepherd (John 10: 11)
    I AM the Resurrection and The Life (John 11: 25)
    I AM the Way, The Truth, and The Life (John 14: 6)
    I AM the True Vine (John 15: 1)
    I AM God, and there is none else (Isaiah 46: 9)
    I and My Father are ONE (John 10: 30)
    I AM ALPHA and OMEGA, the beginning & the ending (Rev. 1: 8)
    KING OF KINGS,.. LORD OF LORDS (Rev. 19: 16)

    Knowing Christ: The I AM : JESUS ; the eternal Word of God

    September 23, 2009 at 9:23 am |
  21. Cooper

    Why isn't Donald Trump being persecuted for allowing the man to pop a tent? Donald isn't brown. This leader has been coming here, for years, popping his tent all over, but now it's the year of Obama--this is the time when all of the hateful folks come out of the woodworks and show they disdain for anything brown!

    September 23, 2009 at 9:23 am |
  22. Kofi

    Americans are becoming more indignant with each passing day? Can people learn to forgive and be tolerable? Where are the Christian values and principles that this country was founded on? I think there are more pertinent issues to be tackled rather than give Gadhafi this much air time. We'll end up creating more enemies for ourselves.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:24 am |
  23. 9

    I too think this is another divider, not based on an airplane accident, but based on race. Some White folks of america need to take their hate and sit on it. Let peace happen. They are into hating anything that is brown. I can't believe this is happening! I'm white and I want him here to let peace happen in this world!

    September 23, 2009 at 9:26 am |
  24. ken

    Ghadafi and libya have been taken off the terrorist list because the us and libya reached an agreement and restitution was paid by Libya. Scotland released a prisoner who is going to die within a few weeks. Ghadafi welcomed the returning prisoner home. Now Ghadafi is being blackballed and can't even rent a room in NYC. I don't get it.
    Trump has allowed Ghadafi to pitch a tent on his property in westchester. I guess people will be angry with trump now.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:27 am |
  25. Lisa

    What happened to tolerance? Just think, if our President went to another country and they treated him as disrespectfully as we are treating Gadhafi, we would be appalled. We need to respect world leaders, regardless of their political policies.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:28 am |
  26. 9

    I"m sure most of those ranting, loud mouthed people thing they are christians. I can't believe it. Bush allowed this leader to enter our country, but no one protested that! Is it really about kissing the terrorist on the cheek? I don't think so. People are hateful more than ever. Give peace a chance and allow these leaders to gather to bring about a better world.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:30 am |
  27. Mary J. Mitchell

    I truly do not understand why all the foreigners are here in our country anyway. They get the jobs, they get the healthcare, they are even , so I have heard, able to apply for our social security. Gadhafi is here for a reason, and it is not a good one. How many acts of terrorism have to happen and how many more Americans have to die in horrible deaths like the twin towers and the flights before our country gets it. These people don,t care, they mean to harm or kill us. That,s the way they have been taught. I know that we have been taught to turn the other cheek, but this has to stop somewhere. I don,t wish for any of my family or friends whom I love so much to be victims of terrorism. Wise up, United States, or it will only get worse. We should have gone over and bombed the bastards just like we did after the Pearl Harbor attack. That was when we were a strong , unintimidated, gutsy country . What happened? Why are terrorists now in our beloved country?

    September 23, 2009 at 9:38 am |
  28. Audrey Fryer

    It wasn't Libya who released him – it was Scotland. Your anger is misplaced – protest Great Britain. If you guys don't like the rent money being paid to New York from all of the Nations of the World then please move the United Nations to Switzerland – at least the countries might be received with some dignity.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:40 am |
  29. Guled

    I wish my country could have leader like Col. Qadhafi . strong leader but not Atoy 4 the west thats what we need in Africa...... do u remember what they did us government officially elected world leader...........
    Operation Ajax,In Laos coup attempts in 1958, 1959, and 1960,In Ghana, in 1966, the CIA sponsored a military coup against leader Kwame Nkrumah in 1966, n South Africa, the CIA gave the apartheid government information that led to the arrest of African National Congress leader Nelson Mandela...... Larry Devlin, the CIA station chief in Leopoldville: "President Eisenhower said, indicated in one way or another, 'let's get rid of this man'(Patrice Lumumba) give me break who cares Tent ............

    September 23, 2009 at 9:48 am |
  30. Gwendolyn N. Greene

    Heidi,
    I was disappointed in the recap of the history you did a short while ago on the USA & Gadhafi. You spoke the sad airline incident and the USA military actions and how many Americans were killed, but you failed to mention that one of Gadhafi's children were in one of these actions.
    Being more balanced would not have engendered any sympathy for Gadhafi, just enlightened once how sad the lost life is for everyone.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:53 am |
  31. Dick Cummings

    If we continue to host the UN, then we must allow people like Kadafi to come to New York. They have as much right to address the UN assembly as does Obama, whether we like it or not.

    September 23, 2009 at 10:08 am |
  32. alanscouten

    Bedford, what "zoning ordinances"? If Trump were holding a Garden Party were to be held there, the yard would be filled with tents, and noone would say a word about "ordinance." When Mr. Duggan brings in the name of Chavez it is clear that his emotions feed a hate that is irrational and not based on the true HISTORY WITH LIBYA. It is 10:10 pm, and CNN continues to repeat the partial record of relations with Libya. Please, try harder. World peace is at stake.

    September 23, 2009 at 10:10 am |
  33. sharyn

    In the past God told the Jews not to relocate any people from other countrys to Isreal. The US should have followed that example. Then we would not have Homeland Security.

    September 23, 2009 at 10:35 am |
  34. Prince

    I feel like everyone is bashing this man based on his past and not giving him time to speak his peace. I'm sure based on how much of an uproar the country is in because he's here, he knows that hes not welcome considering no one has allowed him a shelter of this nation. Yes, I do agree that he shouldnt be in this country. But because hes the leader of his country is the reason hes here, for the UN meeting. Personally, I find it rude and in bad taste to just press judgement against someones past for all we know he could be turning over a new leaf. But, that also doesnt mean that I believe we should forgive him for it. I think we should wait for him to speak and then base your opinions off that.

    September 23, 2009 at 10:36 am |
  35. Mike

    Are you kidding me? It's time to fold his tent and kick him to the curb.

    September 23, 2009 at 11:32 am |
  36. Mark

    What is this man speaking of? This has got to be one of the most unprepared ramblings I've ever seen broadcasted. What a utter waste of time.....

    September 23, 2009 at 11:33 am |
  37. Dave OH

    I've been trying to watch him, but I don't have a clue what he's saying.
    And I saw that hat at a flea market. I has the hair already attached to it.

    September 23, 2009 at 11:39 am |
  38. JORGE TOLEDO

    hello heidi what was gadhafi talking about he has no clue he is just speaking about nothing and the other members of the U .N were laughing at him . he is a joke send him home where ever that is thank you please put me on air

    September 23, 2009 at 11:39 am |
  39. Dodie ~ California

    I have some issues with Muammar Gadafi! I was at Helinkon Air Base in Athens Greece for 3 years 1984-1987. The base was always under threat from Ghadafi's missiles. That is not what I am concerned about.

    In 1986 President Reagan bombed his house and killed his adopted baby daughter,and possibly one of his sons.

    My concern is this: Can he truly overcome this tragedy brought to him by us. We had every reason to do bomb him, but .... (( Can He FORGIVE!!)))

    September 23, 2009 at 11:45 am |
  40. Andy

    Prior to hearing Colonel Gadhafi's speech at the UN, I was against his tent being set up in Bedford, NY. However, the rambling, illogical, foam-at-the-mouth speech he delivered convinces me that he needs extra help. By that I mean, any intelligence he may once have had has obviously been fried by the Libyan sun after 40 years of dictatorship. I think he needs to retreat into a tent, any tent, and stay there. Preferably in Scotland.

    September 23, 2009 at 11:56 am |
  41. Lori C.

    I think he really has a lot of nerve, what a whack job, what did he think Americans were going to think when the Lockerbie Bomber was welcomed home like a Hero. It never ceases to amaze me how much flack the US receives if the rest of the world thinks we have mistreated a suspected terrorist but we're suppose to shut up and take it when another country mistreats us or worse yet kills our citizens and soldiers.

    September 23, 2009 at 12:03 pm |
  42. Tanna

    I almost feel bad for Gadhafi. He's rambling and he could quite possibly be high. Where is the exit stage hook?

    September 23, 2009 at 12:05 pm |
  43. Dodie ~ California

    @ glenn

    The US shot down an Iranian airliner flight IR655 in 1988 or 1989 Not a Libyan Airliner; however, it might still be a retaliation to the US along with us bombing his home and killing his adopted baby daughter and possibly one son. We did bomb his home as it was announced on the base radio.

    September 23, 2009 at 12:06 pm |
  44. UWG Media

    Dr. George Kieh, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of West Georgia, links the policies undertaken by past U.S. administrations as far back as the 1940s and the legacies they left to contemporary administrations and popular societal thought in dealing with terrorism. The tactical decisions made by the Bush administration when combating terrorism around the world as a reult of the events of Sept. 11, 2001, showed a disconnectedness that perplexed U.S. allies and foes alike, Kieh said.

    September 23, 2009 at 12:11 pm |
  45. Dodie ~ California

    Remember Muammar Gadafi has an interpreter! I suspect his interpreter is having problems with the English language. I also suspect he brought his interpreter with him from Libya as he would not want to trust anyone with this job.

    September 23, 2009 at 12:14 pm |
  46. Dodie ~ California

    @ UWG Media

    I am sorry to say...................... I completely agree!

    September 23, 2009 at 12:18 pm |
  47. mike

    I understand Gadhafi gets to speak but quit the rambling on and on. He goes off topics rambling on and on come on his times up, my ears please!

    September 23, 2009 at 12:20 pm |
  48. Mike Armstrong TX.

    Gadafi does make a point we need to get out of the middle east and just let them continue there neverending war.

    September 23, 2009 at 12:21 pm |
  49. Lisa

    The United Nations was designed in the first place for countries on this earth to be peace w/one another and have the chance to speak out with indivduals from fellow nations. Local news just mentioned that Secretary of State Clinton walked out of the room when Gadhafi began to speak. Did not have to stay for the entire speech at least do not walk out at the start. It shows not class or respect for someone in her position. Just my option but sometimes she needs to keep her butts in her seat. Mrs.Clinton and Mrs.Pelosi are very poor excuses for what are country stands for.

    September 23, 2009 at 12:22 pm |
  50. Joel

    You cannot be serious! Is this some type of sick joke? I need to hear nothing further from this guy.

    September 23, 2009 at 12:23 pm |
  51. Allstar

    What is this guy talking about? He is rambling on about everything else but the massacres that his own country have done. JFK MLKjr what? What does that have to do with it?

    September 23, 2009 at 12:24 pm |
  52. Dodie ~ California

    @ mike

    He is answering people's questions. You just do not hear the question!

    He is using an interpreter who is probably having problems with the English language.

    September 23, 2009 at 12:27 pm |
  53. Debi~Ontario Canada

    Gadhafi should leave the podium. All he is doing now is rambling and babbling. He has totally lost his mind.

    September 23, 2009 at 12:32 pm |
  54. Jeff in Va

    Gadhafi raises world wide debate – No more boxers or briefs, now does he use wide or college rule ( If you look his notes are on sheets of ripped out spiral notebook paper)

    September 23, 2009 at 12:32 pm |
  55. Dodie ~ California

    The the United States is honored to have the United Nations headquartered here. Because of this, we need to be tolerant of leaders and nations that we may not like or trust!

    Tolerance is important if nations are to join together. Do not lose sight of the goal! Stop War! and trying to get along with other countries!

    He is trying to explain his point of view! We have only seen our point of view. I find this quite interesting even though the interpreters maybe having difficulty with the English language.

    His rambling may be because he has One shot at addressing the UN in 40 years, so he is trying to explain everything of 40 years in this speech. That is over whelming!

    September 23, 2009 at 12:34 pm |
  56. Mike Armstrong TX.

    If he wants to live in peace then lets live in peace lets foregive but never foreget and live in peace the United states stands for freedom and peace at least it use to.

    September 23, 2009 at 12:35 pm |
  57. cheryl ferguson

    Why....why....why...are you letting him ramble on???He has already worn out one simultaneous translator!

    September 23, 2009 at 12:36 pm |
  58. MARILYN - FLORIDA

    I've been listening to this man for hours now. He obviously never heard of the concept of "sound bites." I do think, on occassion, this man has made some good points. But, ranting, raving, rambling serves no purpose and makes him look completely crazy. I see they've even had to change out interpreters, the first one must have gone nuts. He just tossed a book, that he was quoting from, into the hour. The interpreter laughed.

    I actually think his points about acceptance of the government line on what/who was behind the assassinations of JFK, MLK, and others is a LEGITIMATE comment. Many in this country have questioned it too. Read Norman Mailer's book MARINA & LEE and you too will have questions.

    But, because he is ranting, raving, gesticulating ... all of it just looks like the disjointed speech of a crazy person.

    As to his being allowed to speak at the UN ... all world leaders can do that. Get over it! And thankfully his speech here ends now, finally! I guess he had a flood to get over the 40 year drought of not being allowed to speak.

    September 23, 2009 at 12:37 pm |
  59. christina

    President Obama's speech touched on most important world issues. What a fresh of breath air this man is!! His intelligence, charisma, wisdom, calm, knowledge, is something to be admired.

    And then, we get Gadhafi! What an insult to one's intelligence! What a poor excuse for a human being!

    September 23, 2009 at 12:38 pm |
  60. Wade ( Canada )

    I can't believe what I'm watching! How long are we going the have to listen to this Terrorist and his Roderick. As a person who sent 30 years of my life in the U.S. I follow all news events daily. I can't understand why he was even allowed to even attend this meeting of the United Nations and have the nerve to set up a tent on U.S. soil. He could have easily babbled on via video conferencing. He is just a Madman full of Hatred. Just shocking!

    September 23, 2009 at 12:40 pm |
  61. Joanne Martin

    I don't send my son to school with bombs to solve his problems, I think that the UN should focus on peace and negotiations, when we send in troops with guns to other countries it only causes more destruction of innocent lives who are nothing to do with the wars, we should only be using the UN to help solve problems and help people rebuild their lives and regain control of their countries. Imagine if there were foreign troops marching around American towns with guns, of course the local people would start arming themselves and fighting back.

    September 23, 2009 at 12:47 pm |
  62. Pamela Farnsworth

    September 23, 2009
    UN Assembly Comments:

    Thank you, Gadhafi, for bringing up so many topics that need to be immediately addressed today.

    We support your efforts and honesty.

    September 23, 2009 at 12:47 pm |
  63. James in Idaho

    He sounds a lot like these tea party republican conspiracy theorists. Mark williams and Ru7sh Limbaugh must be so proud. Now they have a head of state supporting them... they're on a roll.

    I'm sure they can overlook his admiration for obama as long as he keeps up with the other crap.

    September 23, 2009 at 12:54 pm |
  64. James in Idaho

    Former Us ambassador to the UN Mike Bolton is still clapping after Kahdafi's speech.

    He said basically the same thing.

    September 23, 2009 at 1:05 pm |
  65. Randy N

    Funny I never heard of any vote to lift the ban on this man to come into the US, I thought we lived in a demarcrcy I thought anyways. This is what I am talking about We have no choice in this country, it's what ever our public servants decide for US. Vote Tea Vote Randy, You don't want some one or thing in the US I wounld allow it to happen. New Yorkers are noit happy.;

    September 23, 2009 at 1:07 pm |
  66. godi38

    Mr. Gadhafi told thousand truths. Why? Who gives the right to do....
    The rest is part of this world,hypocrisy.
    .

    September 23, 2009 at 1:08 pm |
  67. James in Idaho

    Mike Bolton once said that you could remove the top ten floors of the UN and it wouldnt' make a bit of difference. Do you think he's getting a lawsuit going against Kahdafi abotu plagerizing him? 😉

    September 23, 2009 at 1:10 pm |
  68. Colleen

    Despite his rambling at the UN, I have to agree with some (SOME) of what he said. We need to stay out of other countries civil wars or other disagreements. If we didn't always look at things from our point of view only, and consider that other cultures view things differently, we may not agree with, but may try to understand them. Who is to say we can retaliate against other countries in ways we see fit, but they are not allowed to? If we all stay to our own countries and cultures, and don't try to impose our beliefs everywhere, there would be alot less animosity against the U.S. I think President Obama is on the right track in speaking with other leaders.

    September 23, 2009 at 1:21 pm |
  69. James in Idaho

    I find it interesting that the lack of trust in the status quo isn't just an American phenominon, although, liberals, democrats and independants didnt' trust George Bush for a reason, and the conservatives, republicans, and tea partiers don't trust Obama for No reason.

    September 23, 2009 at 1:28 pm |
  70. James in Idaho

    What about Pfc. Bowe R. Bergdahl, 23, of Idaho who was recently captured in Afghanistan? Did we forget about him?

    September 23, 2009 at 1:43 pm |
  71. Mika

    No matter what if people admit it or not Gadfahi is speaking the truth. And it is disgusting how people can sit at computers and in front of their t.v. and simply sugguest he is the Terrorist and should not even be aloud in the U.S. at least he has taking courage agaisnt what man is capable of distroying for what they call freedom.
    The U.S.A and B.C and other countrys are not by any means free from being considered terroist countrys, when they are themselves all profitting off the murder of millions of lives and many of which they did in Gods name. The Native people including many children of these lands have been murdered by the founders of this so called new world. If the guns did not rid of them they moved in bording schools where even priest are murders and if this didn't work they used germ war fair. We should all be mad at men that have become the locust of this world. That is if anyone cares about the future of humanity. And lets face it citizens are the new indians.
    To many people can see and are still blind, have ears and still can not hear. A dream freeed the slaves but, people will have to wake up in order to a really make the dream come true.

    September 23, 2009 at 1:44 pm |
  72. Jean

    There are a few heads of states or leaders o fsome countries who should never be allowed to enter the US but for the United Nations approval. Gadhafi was allowed to enter after all those years and since he was allowed to enter, he should be given due hospitality. Hospitality and respect are to be given to our friends and enemies alike once they are on our soil. This is not to say that the people will not be angry and demonstrate against him, Gadhafi especially since the man who bombed the airplane, killing over 250 people over Lokerbie, Scotland was returned to his country and was given a welcome which was fit for a diplomat. This would make the relatives of those departed people extremely angry and disappointed including Western governments and other nationals that this man was released and given such a welcome. Gadhafi will downplay it as a mere homecoming greeting. To us in the western world, it was not what we observed, concluded and accepted and rightfully so.
    Gadhafi continues to be an enemy of the U.S. It is my feeling in the spirit "of peace sake" President Obama did not object to him coming to the U.S. This includes Armadinejad.
    These two are granted permission to come to the US and to speak at the UN. Yes, they are using the platform to speak against the US on US soil. For myself, I would not allow them into the US.
    I somewhat listened to Gadhafi without sitting in front of the TV and for too long but on occasion glancing at it while this man spoke. I found his speech to be extremely boring. He appears to be living in the past and bringing up matters which took place many years ago which althhough historical, has, in this present day, absolutely nothing to do with President Obama and the US in general. I do not think his speech made sense to many people. It made no sense to me and will serve no useful purpose and capable of changing anything. There was nothing in his speech which has indicated that he plans to establish sincere and lasting friendship with the US or other democratic nations. His speech has indicated that he will continue with his attitude and promote war.
    We must look forward and not backward but appears not to be the intention of Gadhafi..
    I took a look at Gadhafi's face. I recall some years ago he looked handsome and youthful. Today, he has nothing of these attributes. He looks older and his face did not depict to me as a good, kind and loving person.
    There are some people who will age gracefully and some of them who will not age gracefully. This also depends on the type of hearts we possess and the type of lives we live – our lifestyle.
    Through the years, Gadhafi has been encouraging terrorism against the western world, no exception of all the US. Therefore, his heart is an evil one which will obviously project unto his face. The face is the mirror of our hearts. What is also imbedded in our hearts will be projected unto our faces and as we age. We cannot get away from that. This is what Gadhafi looks like. Not a pleasant face to view at all.
    He will return to his homeland and matters will remain the same. He will have learned absolutely nothing from this International gathering. This is not the purpose of inviting all heads of states to the UN gathering. It was better that he did not come to the US.

    September 23, 2009 at 1:55 pm |
  73. Rob Reed

    The Collins/Harris commentary and questions around today's two major speeches at the United Nations were superficial and sophomoric: they projected a desire to talk "horse-race" in Ms. Collins' case and a school-boy-like "ya, America First" context from Mr. Harris righteous defense of the status quo. Harris indignation reached its apogee with his amateurish observation that the UN wouldn't exist if it hadn't been for the five nations with veto strength.... All the global issues and realities raised by both speakers at the UN–one with a world view decidedly off from ours, and all CNN could do was play games of verbal aggression or defense. That's the lazy journalism I've come to expect from you since Aaron Brown's departure. And now we get to hear your snarky review of the events until even you grow tired of hearing yourselves and switch to the next easiest cutline. A positive note: many thanks to corporate execs for Fareed Zakaria on Sundays and for letting us see the two complete speeches today from the UN.

    September 23, 2009 at 2:06 pm |
  74. sandycast2

    Unbelievable Ghadhafi was allowed into our country. PLEASE do not give him any credibility AT ALL, and DO NOT listen to his speech tonight. He is a murdering thug who will do or say anything to get attention. Where can I send money to Rabbi Boteach?

    September 23, 2009 at 2:16 pm |
  75. Roche

    As I've noticed, whenever someone makes a great political point, the media and government do their best to silence him. Regardless of Gadhafi's character, was anything he said incorrect?

    * The UN does not honor all countries, but instead a select few. Thier are big countries and small countries on this council.
    * Kennedy WAS assassinated within his own government, the only people who deny the TRUTH are the media. Dr King suffered the same fate.
    *The UN did ignor wars going on in the world. "65" he quoted.

    Gadhafi has made some points. So instead of newscasters and unknowns speaking on his behalf, let's just analyze what was said. "We need to banish the bomb."

    September 23, 2009 at 2:19 pm |
  76. Wolf Schneider

    Hello Kyra.
    I saw the interview with the good Rabbi. I wonder why he doesn't condemn Pres GW Bush on the killing of innocent people in Iraq by US troops!! More then 100,000 killed. And he only condemns Gadhafi !?
    Double standard. Same with Israel.

    September 23, 2009 at 2:21 pm |
  77. lawrence adams

    Hey Rabbi, how many innocent , women, children, and the elderly have Israel (US) bombs killed, they are represented in the UN , do not Palestinians feel pain also, or are you so filled with hate as some of them are, in the name of god? Some of you people don't mind killing as long as you are the ones doing it, what God do you serve? Killing is wrong no mater who does it. You people call yourself Americans, you applaud killing other people as you stand and salute the dead , and maimed young people coming home from a war they never asked for, to a country that ignores them after they're back, you have no souls i feel sorry for you.

    September 23, 2009 at 2:31 pm |
  78. Colleen

    Alot of what he spoke is the truth. Why are people so afraid to admit our country has made mistakes? We have. Regardless of what some say, that it would make us appear weak, it actually makes us stronger.

    What would we do if another country interfered after Kent State, or our continuing mistreatment of the original inhabitants of this country, the American Indians? We would retaliate against them.

    We refuse to acknowledge our imperfections, yet have always thought it within our rights to impose our beliefs on others. I think President Obama has been correct in apologizing for our past mistakes.

    I love my country and would not live anywhere else. We are fortunate to have low cost food, gas and shelter compared to most other parts of the world, yet we always complain. Suck it up American and let's try for some tolerance, understanding and peace for the world.

    September 23, 2009 at 3:08 pm |
  79. Jay

    I liked Ghadafi's speech; he was telling the truth about US, Israeli, and European aggression against the world. He exposed the hypocrisy of the UN and the Security Council on various international conflicts. He is correct in pointing out atrocities committed in Iraq, Afghanistan, Palestine and other places by Zionist terrorists and their illegal occupation of Plaestine.

    The US government and media are controlled by Zionist interests and they will never give a fair and honest assessment of leaders like Ghadafi. Hey, Libya renounced its nuclear ambitions, why don't you guys tell Israel to do the same??

    September 23, 2009 at 3:22 pm |
  80. David

    It is good that you are reporting the background of US relations with Libya leading up to Mr. Gadhafi's visit and proposed erecting of a tent first in New Jersey and then New York for receiving visitors. It seems a peaceable gesture and it is good that Mr Gadhafi has come around to realizing that dialogue is better than terrorism and justifying violence for the conduct of world affairs. People are more concerned though with his postions and actions. As someone though who has been in power in his country for 40 years he is almost automatically a despot and he has a long way to go to making amends with the families who lost loved ones as a result of his backing the terrorists who attacked Pan Am flight 103. But it should not be lost on anyone that there is some rapprochement with this outright foe beginning in the Bush admin and there is some hope in this situation.

    This is all the hoopla that surrounds this session of the UN General Assembly. What maybe we all should be focusing on is getting all those delegates to come together and do everything they can about all the crisis spots in the world.

    September 23, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  81. James in Idaho

    heh... no shortage of mike Bolton fans today 😀

    September 23, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  82. Arthur

    Ghadafi's speech was very annoying today and rude. He kept talking about the past, reminding old wounds instead of focusing to the future by bringing good ideas. He was not professional after tiring up his booklet and mishandling his speech papers when he was speaking. Oh man !! It is time for him to retire after being re-educated.

    September 23, 2009 at 4:27 pm |
  83. Sooner

    You know the saying, people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones.
    Some of what Mr Gadhafi said I agreed with.

    September 23, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  84. Fabian Bustamante

    Today is Gadhafi and Ahmadinejad, before it was Chavez, Castro ... There is always someone.
    Terrorist?, he may be, but why?, people doesn't do things just because they feel like it, every action has a reason.
    The US is not better than any other nation including terrorist states, just be truthful and look at how this nation has achieved their goals. First they almost exterminated the native Americans (the real Americans), slaved the Black people, nuked Japan, this, and many other actions of the US are qualify as terrorist attacks, check a dictionary. Gadhafi may not be a saint but neither is the US, this country send troops all around the world in the name of freedom and democracy, whose freedom; the freedom they need to extend the capitalistic empire that they promote, a system controlled by the same ones that don't let the IAEA enter their country but promote campaigns against nuclear projects in Iran. The people in this country condemns what they don't like or understand and that shows their ignorance, at the end what makes you believe that the US is better?, "One nation under GOD", BS.
    Sounds to me like "We are the chosen ones", if we want to live in a better world we have to stop thinking that we are better than them, what make this nation better?, if you have a good reason I would like to know about it.
    This nation must prove that is better thru their actions not just by thinking it's or by trying to convince everyone else that they are by invading them.
    Gadhafi has a point related to the security council of the UN, it should be more than 5 nations on the permanent status
    and every region should be represented.

    And if you don't like those kind of people being here in your country, Imagen how the Native Americans feel when they
    see you in their land...

    September 23, 2009 at 6:50 pm |
  85. Larry

    WHAT? At MY end of CNN's broadcast was long periods of silence and then a few garbled words of "english" which made little or no sense at all. If that is what everyone heard, how can anyone comment on the speach? Near the end a woman's voice spoke clearly. If that is what the UN heared it is no wonder we are so misunderstood.

    September 23, 2009 at 6:52 pm |
  86. Laura

    I honestly find most of this entertaining. Although I certainly understand and don't want to make light of the pain he's caused other people, I can't help but laugh a bit at how ridiculous not only this situation is, but also, at how ridiculous the speech he gave was.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:07 pm |
  87. Dennis McBride

    Glad he made it to the states. To bad he can't speak English, I would like to hear what he has to say.........I don't trust listening to interpreters..

    September 24, 2009 at 12:22 am |
  88. Glen

    This is the 21st. Century why do these people still run countries. Should be some kind of a world law in place.

    September 24, 2009 at 10:40 am |
  89. Judith

    With regard to Gadhafi speech at the UN: Your commentary is remarkably naive. He is a manipulative primitive with obvious intent to display his maximum disrespect of the UN and the U.S.A.
    How can you play simpleton and expect the public to have the slightest respect for you and your fellow "reporters/commentators."?
    Pathetic and insulting.
    Wake up.

    September 24, 2009 at 10:43 am |
  90. JR

    His idea of adding the African Union as a permanent member of the Security Council sounds like a good idea to me. It's just a shame that that good idea had to come from the mouth of Gadhafi, because nobody else would willingly go along with anything he says. I also got the impression that he was also trying to rally the African nations against the rest of the world. Given how desperate times have always been in Africa, a despotic leader like him might succeed in this.

    September 24, 2009 at 11:35 am |
  91. Chris

    I wonder if the families of those killed in the Pan Am bombing appreciate the tongue in cheek "isn't this hysterical?" reporting of this story by CNN. Nothing funny here at all

    September 24, 2009 at 11:38 am |
  92. Stephanie

    My Facebook status yesterday was: "Man Al-Gadahfi went in on them today!! haha Whether you like him or not, some of what he said was so true. After a 40yr absence, he had a lot bottled up I suppose. haha Man the speech lasted over an HOUR~!"

    -In 2004 the US resumed diplomatic talks with Libya. Although imperfect, they've since made strides to be more cooperative in the international arena. We do need to extend the same respect that we extend to any other leader who takes the podium. Maybe we should seriously take a look at his speech instead of quaking at it. My opinion.

    MAIS student in South Carolina,
    Stephanie

    September 24, 2009 at 11:38 am |
  93. Dan Fleury

    We keep talking about Gadhafi "Pitching Tent".. the image alone is enough to make me hurl chunks...

    September 24, 2009 at 12:11 pm |
  94. Russ Bonny

    After listening to Gadhafi's rant yesterday and his thinly masked suggestion about moving the UN headquaters to reduce jet lag, I decided to calculate which UN capital city is closest to all the other UN capital cities. I made a spreadsheet centered on the formula:

    distance=acos(sin(lat1)*sin(lat2*)+cos(lat1)*cos(lat2)*cos(lon2-lon1))*R

    Summing all combinations of the 192 UN member state capital cities, the closest city to all others is... drum roll please... yep, you guessed it... Tripoli, Libya! 🙂

    It's 867,618 km from all the others. Poor old Mexico City is dead last at 2,020,480 km.

    September 24, 2009 at 12:54 pm |
  95. Ken - Long Beach, CA

    None of his speech made any sense. There is one place we could let him pitch his tent. On a flooding river bank in Georgia. 🙂

    September 24, 2009 at 1:04 pm |
  96. carolyn

    He should not have been allowed into the country after all he has done/condoned.

    Note to self: Do not go to Lybia for any Botox, filler or plastic surgery!

    September 24, 2009 at 3:51 pm |
  97. carolyn

    Note to Self: Do not go to Lybia for Botox, wrinkle filler or face lift!

    September 24, 2009 at 3:53 pm |
  98. carolyn

    Go home!

    Your speech shows that you are still a madman! No change.

    September 24, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  99. Jacob Rempel

    REFERENCE:

    * A U.N. debut few will forget | Video Video
    * Obama: World failing to deal with challenges
    * Protesters decry Ahmadinejad, Gadhafi

    Dear CNN news staff and commentators;

    As a teacher of history,
    I hold no brief for Gadhafi or
    for Ahmadinejad, but I do hold a strong brief for Obama.

    I have been to Libya, and have read many newspapers and seen endless
    news casts and blogs about Gadhafi and Ahmadinejad and about all the issues
    which these two raised about the UN and countries including Canada, the US,
    all big powers, and many other prosperous countries. I'm not all-knowing, but
    I'm reasonably well-informed.

    Gadhafi was indeed rambling and ranting, and in a contest in
    rhetoric I would have graded it very close to zero. Ahmadinejad,
    on the other hand, spoke with style and rhetorical competence.

    I was seriously offended by the disparaging commentary about the speeches
    by CNN commentators. A few words about the quality of rhetoric would be
    in order, but you as knowledgeable journalists could nevertheless hear the
    several factual negative observations these two hypocrites were making
    about the UN and about us self-righteous, prosperous, democratic nations, -
    about our historical abuse of power, and about also recent and continuing
    abuse of wealth and power.

    President Obama actually referred to some of the same facts,
    and committed himself and the United States to seek a better
    way to relate to smaller countries and to other great powers.

    The fact that the old dictator Gadhafi rambled like a tired old man,
    does not invalidate all the criticisms which he levelled at "our" side.
    The fact that democratically challenged Ahmadinejad ignored the
    contradictions in his own government (as do all governments when
    they address the UN ), does not invalidate everything he said.

    He does know Persian history and more recent events, and he
    was declaring the position of his government about many issues,
    many positions with which his domestic opposition agrees.
    More effectively than Gadhafi, Ahmadinejad pointedly
    and clearly described some present day situations forcefully.

    These two men spoke for two sovereign nations, members of
    the United Nations. Like very many other dictatorial leaders,
    they have power which the UN and President Obama
    necessarily recognize and will necessarily deal with.

    Personal virtue of leaders and their democratic credentials
    have never been significant factors in relations between states,
    factors in the endlessly shifting balance of power among states.
    I commend to you a book by Hans J. Morgenthau, called
    Politics among Nations.

    However serious the issues, I note that you have fun with all
    the contradictions. Your humour makes bad news bearable.
    However, Mr Independent Lou Dobbs does get on my nerves a bit with his sarcasm.

    In passing, I must add that you all and your politicians in the US
    need to do a serious visit to any one or all of our capitalist prosperous Canadian provinces to study thoroughly what our Canadian single payer medical care insurance system operate.

    (Note that I call it medical care insurance, not health care program. )

    Medical care by doctors here is completely private, provided by
    doctors in private practice. Except for a very few business oriented
    doctors, all the doctors I know like the single payer government
    insurance system. They have no problems collecting their fees
    for their privately provided medical care.

    In 50 years, all members of my large family and extended family
    across Canada have always freely chosen their doctors, changing
    doctors if this was what they wanted. I did so once in the middle
    of a treatment in hospital.

    So far, prescription drugs are provided freely only during
    hospital stay. .

    For use at home we have to pay for drugs and dental care, unless we have extended care insurance provided by private insurers.
    Our hospitals are government owned and give care freely,
    with few serious waits. Serious complaints are rare.

    Don't believe the woman from Ontario who claims on
    US television that she would have died if she had taken
    her turn in the line-up for surgery. The fact is that she
    had a benign cyst, not life-threatening. Maybe she
    had anxiety problems which caused her to believe
    the worst, and she panicked. She should have gone
    to another doctor who could have reassured her, or
    perhaps expedited her treatment.

    My family and I have been on waiting lists for some
    surgical procedures. Unpleasantness deferred.
    No problem.

    Cost? My cost for two of us is $35 / month.
    Costs for doctor care and hospital care for Canada
    is about 8 or 10% of our national income, as we've
    been told. Not even opponents dispute this information.
    Everyone is insured and if I neglect to pay my modest
    premiums, I owe the doctors and hospital for care.
    But if I then bring premiums up to date, my debt
    isset aside.

    2009/9/23 Jacob Rempel
    Vancouver, Canada

    September 24, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  100. Mother

    Gadahafi's behavior is a true reflection of a political leader living in isolation. As long as we continue to marginalize political leaders that behave differently than we do, we will continue to encounter situation such a this one. I am deeply disturbed by our indifference towards the Iranian leader, as well. He is not a western , and he does not belong to a western culture, therefore, we shall not expect this man to behave the way we do, as westerns. I strongly believe that the Iranian president means what he says! Iran has been deeply isolated and marginalized by the west because of their resistance against Israel. The fact that he is resisting against Israel oppression does not make him a terrorist! We need to put outside our arrogance and look at a long term solution for our differences with the Muslim world.

    September 24, 2009 at 6:38 pm |
  101. Ronchi Marlin

    The Locker B bomer must rot in hell. No pardon ever, as a humanbeen. He wants forgiveness, no problem, ask God, not me.

    September 24, 2009 at 7:05 pm |
  102. David

    I think Gadhafi has changed. Maybe just a dow jones thing. People are all ready to forgive when the dow jones is up. It stresses me out.

    September 25, 2009 at 3:03 am |
  103. vince

    i think knowing about these plots will educate people that we NEED the FBI and counterintelligence agencies to 'wiretap' and find these people. if you're not doing anything wrong you shouldnt worry about someone 'listening in'.

    September 25, 2009 at 9:15 am |
  104. Alice Scott

    Today is national day of prayer for muslim on the grounds of our capital and Gadhafi is IN our country. WOW! After all i've seen about foiled terrorists plots and terror cells discovered. I saw a you tube of children in our schools being taught a chant to say to O'bama and a song to sing praises to him as well. I believe the song was set to a tune we all know.
    We are in bad way here. Unemployment, homeless people and CHILDREN, yet the rich get richer on the backs and the burden is put on the backs of the middle class. READ 11 Chronicles chapter 7:14 and find the answer.

    September 25, 2009 at 11:55 am |
  105. freedom

    If we think about what the others say wii understand each other...If we think about what Gadhafi say will understand what is the way of thinking in the third world....if we want freedom we must accept the others...Gadhafi says FACTS...

    September 26, 2009 at 6:38 am |
  106. Fauzia Habibullah

    More soldiers, More war. Wars never solved anything, but gained too much illwill, resentment and isolation.

    The strategy for Afghanistan should focus on promoting peace and goodwill only, with the people there. The US should work with the friendly war lords in building their area's infrastructure. Building schools, dispensaries, clean water supplies, roads & transportation system as well as agricultural help will go a very long way in gaining the local populations trust and goodwill. The benefits of this will spill into other areas as well, more people will ask for it and cooperate towards bringing it into their hometowns.

    The Afghans know how to protect themselves and their own. America should focus on creating peace & progress.

    October 8, 2009 at 1:02 pm |
  107. Fleta Smith

    Did't he mention that that war is a civil war? I am so sorry that Pres.
    Obama has to act on both Iraq and Afganistan–What an awful legacy
    to leave–Eight years-umumum

    October 9, 2009 at 10:20 am |