Gadhafi Son Cut Short US Internship

State Department assisted Khamis Gadhafi in engineering gig
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 29, 2011 1:41 AM CDT
Soldiers and tanks from the Libyan military's elite Khamis Brigade, led by Gadhafi's youngest son Khamis Gadhafi, man a checkpoint in western Libya.   (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
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(Newser) – Moammar Gadhafi's youngest son had to skip his visit to West Point last month—he had an uprising to crush at home. Khamis Gadhafi, who leads a notoriously brutal brigade in the Libyan military, had been due to visit the military academy as part of a month-long internship in the US sponsored by Los Angeles-based engineering firm AECOM and assisted by the State Department, reports CNN. He met with high-tech firms, universities and defense contractors before cutting the visit short to return to Libya.

State Department officials viewed Gadhafi as a reformer and said "it would be beneficial if he came away from the visit with a positive view of the US," an AECOM spokesman tells the Washington Post. The firm was "shocked and outraged" to learn of Gadhafi's military connections, the spokesman added. Khamis appeared in a Libyan state TV broadcast from the Gadhafi family's Tripoli compound last night. Earlier reports mistakenly said he had been killed when a disaffected Libyan air force pilot flew his plane into the compound.

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