Omar Mukhtar was a Libyan freedom fighter who led the resistance against the Italian colonial rule in the 1920s and 1930s. He is also known as the Lion of the Desert for his courage and determination. He was captured and executed by the Italians in 1931, but his legacy lives on as a symbol of national pride and inspiration for many Muslims around the world.
His life and struggle were depicted in a 1981 film titled Lion of the Desert, starring Anthony Quinn as Omar Mukhtar and Oliver Reed as General Rodolfo Graziani, the Italian commander who was ordered by Benito Mussolini to crush the rebellion. The film was directed by Moustapha Akkad, who also produced The Message, a film about the life of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).
The film was banned in Italy for many years due to its portrayal of the brutal atrocities committed by the Italian army against the Libyan people. It was also criticized by some for being historically inaccurate and biased. However, it was praised by others for its epic scale, cinematography, music, and performances. It is considered one of the best films about Omar Mukhtar and his resistance movement.
The film is available in various languages, including Tamil, on YouTube[^1^] and other online platforms. It is also available for download on Hungama[^3^], a digital entertainment service that offers movies, music, TV shows, and more. The film is rated PG for violence and some language.Omar Mukhtar was born in 1858 in Zanzur, near Tobruk, in the region of Cyrenaica under Ottoman control[^1^]. He belonged to an Arab tribe that followed the Senussi order, a religious and political movement that aimed to revive Islam and resist foreign domination[^1^]. He lost his father early on and spent his youth in poverty. He was adopted by a sheikh and received his education at the local mosque and later at the Senussi university in Jaghbub[^1^]. He became a respected teacher and imam, and also learned the skills of a warrior and a leader.
In 1896, he was appointed as the ruler of Zawiyat Ayn Kalk, a Senussi settlement in western Sudan (now Chad), where he fought against the French colonial expansion[^1^]. He returned to Cyrenaica in 1902 and became the ruler of Zawiyat Luqsur, where he established a reputation for justice and piety[^1^]. He also married and had three sons and a daughter.
In 1911, Italy invaded Libya and declared war on the Ottoman Empire. Omar Mukhtar joined the resistance movement led by Idris al-Senussi, the grandson of the founder of the Senussi order[^1^]. He organized and trained a guerrilla army of Bedouin tribesmen who waged a fierce and prolonged war against the Italian forces. He used his knowledge of the desert terrain and his mastery of guerrilla tactics to inflict heavy losses on the enemy. He also maintained good relations with other tribal leaders and sought to unify the resistance under the banner of Islam. 061ffe29dd