TRIPOLI, Libya -- Moammar Gadhafi stood defiant Tuesday in the face of the heaviest and most punishing NATO airstrikes yet -- at least 40 thunderous daylight attacks that sent plumes of smoke billowing above the Libyan leader's central Tripoli compound.
In late afternoon and as the strikes continued, Libyan state television broadcast an audio address from Gadhafi, who denounced NATO and the rebels challenging his rule. He vowed never to surrender.
Alliance officials have warned for days they were increasing the scope and intensity of their air campaign to oust Gadhafi after more than 40 years in power. NATO is backing the rebel insurgency, which has seized swaths of eastern Libya and pockets in the regime's stronghold in the west since it began in February, inspired by uprisings elsewhere in the Arab world.
Syria warns of more marches
DAMASCUS, Syria -- A Syrian government newspaper said Tuesday that more Syrians and Palestinians plan to march to the Israeli border, warning Israel the day will come when hundreds of thousands of refugees return to their occupied villages.
Israeli forces opened fire on Palestinian and Syrian protesters Sunday, killing as many as 23 people who tried to cross into the Israeli-occupied Syrian Golan Heights.
The article referred to Palestinian refugees in camps in Syria, as well as Syrians who fled the Golan Heights when Israel captured the strategic plateau in the 1967 Mideast war.
Chile volcano ash grounds flights
BUENOS AIRES, Argentina -- Stiff winds blew ash from a Chilean volcano Tuesday in a widening arc across Argentina to the capital, grounding most air travel to and from the country for much of the day.
Since airborne ash can severely damage jet engines, Aerolineas Argentinas and Austral, the country's state-owned international and domestic airlines, canceled all flights within Argentina as well as to and from other countries. At least six international carriers also suspended flights between Buenos Aires and cities in the United States, Europe and South America, and flights from Chile over Argentine territory also were suspended.
Later Tuesday afternoon, Aerolineas announced it was slowly resuming flights from Buenos Aires to the north and east, areas beyond the reach of the thickest part of the plume. But airports closer to the volcano were ordered closed through at least Sunday. LAN Air Lines also was resuming flights over Argentine territory.