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Qaddafi's death leaves a Libya that must build itself from scratch

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Esam Al-Fetori/Reuters

(Read caption) Anti-Qaddafi fighters gesture as they ride in a vehicle, trailed by an image of Muammar Qaddafi, after the fall of Sirte in the town on Thursday. Qaddafi was killed on Thursday as Libya's new leaders declared they had overrun the last bastion of his long rule, sparking wild celebrations that eight months of war may finally be over.

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The killing of Muammar Qaddafi today puts an exclamation point on the Libyan revolution. Difficult challenges remain ahead for Libya. But with Qaddafi gone, his strange, formless, socialist-in-name-but-tyrannical-in-application form of government is gone as well.

The writing has been on the wall for months, at least since Tripoli fell to rebel forces. Since then, there's been plenty of writing on his legacy and impact on the world.

Long time Monitor Africa correspondent Scott Baldauf wrote in August that Qaddafi has had a profound impact on his continent.

"As the single-largest contributor to the budget of the African Union, a prime aid donor for poor African countries, and a dependable advocate for pan-African cooperation, Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi is a man whose impact reaches far beyond his country’s borders.

That impact is sometimes good, as when he funds hospital or road projects, or when his estimated 15 percent contribution of the AU’s budget allows the AU to send peacekeepers to Somalia, Darfur, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. And it can be bad, when he buys weapons for rebel groups to destabilize his neighbors like Sudan and Chad."

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