The Free Officers' coup of 1952 in Egypt led many Libyan officers to be disenchanted with Idris and become great followers of Gamal Abdel Nasser.
This situation reached the stage that the British Army officers retained by Idris to train and advise the new armed forces deemed the force entirely untrustworthy.
There was no separate defence ministry; all defence activities were centralised under Gaddafi.
There was a High Command of the Armed Forces (al-Qiyada al-ulya lil-quwwat al-musallaha).
From the late 1970s to around 1987, the armed forces were involved in the Chadian-Libyan conflict with four major incursions into Chad.
The Libyan Army suffered great losses in these conflicts, especially that of the Toyota War of 1987, largely due to poor tactics and Western aid to Chad.
After Britain succeeded in occupying the Libyan territories, the need for the British-trained and equipped Sanusi troops appeared to be over.