August 25th, 2011
11:22 PM ET

Smitten Gadhafi? Rebels find Condoleezza Rice photo book

We'd long heard that Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi admired former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. In 2007, he called her "Leeza ... my darling black African woman" whom he loved "very much."

Just words? Perhaps. Or maybe, as a discovery this week suggests, he really was quite impressed.

Rebels ransacking his Bab al-Aziziya compound in Tripoli found a photo album of Rice, The New York Times reports.

A description of the album, from the Times:

"There she is, in one (picture), smiling off to the side, her flip-do accented perfectly for the camera. And there she is in another, smiling next to you-know-who during that visit to Tripoli. He is wearing a flowing white robe with purple sash and Africa pin; she looks more businesslike in a gray pinstripe suit with white pearls, her flip-do having given way to a page-boy bob."

Rice was with the Bush administration when the United States restored relations with Libya in 2005, after Gadhafi decided to abandon his pursuit of weapons of mass destruction, renounce terrorism and compensate victims of a 1986 disco bombing in Berlin and the 1988 Pan Am 103 bombing over Lockerbie, Scotland.

In a 2007 interview with Al Jazeera, Gadhafi said this about Rice:

"I support my darling, black African woman. ... I admire and am very proud of the way she leans back and gives orders to the Arab leaders. ... I love her very much. I admire her, and I'm proud of her because she's a black woman of African origin."

Gadhafi met with Rice the next year, when Rice made the first visit by a U.S. secretary of state to Libya in more than 50 years. CNN's Elise Labott reported on their meeting in a reception room at Gadhafi’s Tripoli compound:

"Gadhafi, wearing a white robe and a black fez but not his trademark dark sunglasses, shook the hands of the male members of Rice's staff but not Rice, instead offering the traditional greeting of his hand over his heart for her," Labott reported in her CNN.com piece, noting that Muslim men are prohibited from shaking hands with women to whom they are not related.

Rice's office, when reached by CNN on Thursday for reaction to the photo album, said she'd reserve comment until the release of her book on November 1.

Fouad Ajami, a Middle East expert, senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and an outspoken critic of Gadhafi, provided some context regarding why Gadhafi would stress Rice's African roots and comment on her dealings with Arab leaders.

"He ... fancied himself at one point as something of an African," Ajami told CNN's Joe Johns on Thursday. "He basically said at one point that Libya is an African country, (that) it has nothing to do with the Arabs. And he dubbed himself king of the kings of Africa, and he turned his back on the Arabs."

Ajami said he wouldn't think Rice is thrilled.

"Secretary Rice is an esteemed colleague ... at Hoover and something of a friend, so I don't think she's flattered by this," Ajami told Johns on "The Situation Room."

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Filed under: Condoleezza Rice • Libya
soundoff (553 Responses)
  1. YAKIMO

    Some of you guys sometimes make senseless comments here that even a lunatic would never make .Our world of today should not be based on race colour or creed.Please refrain from seeing this world in only one colour.

    August 26, 2011 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
  2. Sharp

    The main thing I carry away from this is GWB liked nasty dictators & sent his best girl to schmooze one.

    August 26, 2011 at 10:42 am | Report abuse |
  3. MOOMAR

    Steve Earle was even inspired to write a song for her... odd kind of tune for Earle. "Condi Condi"

    August 26, 2011 at 10:42 am | Report abuse |
  4. Jeepers

    Stalker alert!

    August 26, 2011 at 10:48 am | Report abuse |
  5. DJ

    I'll bet Condi is "creeped out" by this creepy obsession!

    August 26, 2011 at 10:48 am | Report abuse |
    • Sharp

      Maybe she likes it; can't never tell about women.

      August 26, 2011 at 10:54 am | Report abuse |
  6. Franky

    Libya is in Africa.

    August 26, 2011 at 10:49 am | Report abuse |
  7. kate

    I AGREE WITH YAKIMO. THERE ARE SENSELESS AND CRASS COMMENTS HERE THAT OUGHT TO BE DELETED. IT'S CLEAR THAT THE LOUDMOUTHS HERE HAVE ISSUES. SO WHAT IF GHADDAFI HAS A THING FOR MS RICE. HE'S A HUMAN BEING AND A MAN NOT A MONSTER. SEEMS TO ME THAT WE ARE ALLOWING OUR VIEWS TO BE WARPED BY NEWS OUTLETS' VERSION OF THE TRUTH ABOUT PEOPLE. O MA SE O!

    August 26, 2011 at 10:49 am | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      He's not a monster??? Tell that to the families of Pan Am 103 victims. He's not a monster??? Tell that to the families of the Berlin club
      bombing.

      August 26, 2011 at 10:59 am | Report abuse |
    • Bugmenot

      I got news for ya BABE, it is so a monster.

      August 26, 2011 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
    • thedizzle

      But the true question is, is a more of a monster than GW Bush or Bombya??? There are MILLIONS UPON MILLIONS of people all over the world who would say NO. Death tolls are a good way to measure this. Stop being so stupid and naive America!!!

      August 26, 2011 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
    • john

      you ma'am, are VERY naieve. gaddafi has been a ruthess tyrant since he took power. what are you gonna say next? "stalin was a sweetie" or perhaps that pol pot got a raw deal?

      August 26, 2011 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
  8. theboosh

    NeoCons/Republicans never met a dictator they didn't like.

    August 26, 2011 at 10:50 am | Report abuse |
    • TIM

      what do the cowardly demoncrats do? not only do they shake the hands of dictators but cower under the bed whenever one of them sneezes. was it not the "leader from behind" obama who said he would bow to ahmadinajed of iran without any conditions? what did he get back apart from scorn? his envoys are trying to prostrate to the stroke stricken despot in north korea. america is a shadow of herself today, thanks to you appeasers.

      August 26, 2011 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
    • thedizzle

      Same with the neocons disguised as liberals who occupy the White House and kill people all over the world when they want to steal their resource.

      August 26, 2011 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
  9. Sharp

    "Rice's office, when reached by CNN on Thursday for reaction to the photo album, said she'd reserve comment until the release of her book on November 1." Check it out; she's using this to build up buzz for her fricken book.

    August 26, 2011 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
  10. Veritas

    What are those stains all over the book?

    August 26, 2011 at 10:56 am | Report abuse |
    • Bugmenot

      Likely monster jam.

      August 26, 2011 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
  11. mehdi

    that tells you how screwed up this man's brain was! condoleeza rice is so ugly she looks like a monster from outer space to me...

    August 26, 2011 at 10:59 am | Report abuse |
    • disjustin

      Medhi-Return of Arabs oh sorry the Jedhi you're not! A Donkey just Abuse your father form behind. I guess that is how you and your sister was born. Laura Bush threw up some ugly on your mothers Virginia, which sealed the deal of your ugly fate!!

      August 26, 2011 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
    • Silly Me

      but Gadhafi's face looks like a monster from outer space that was hit by a train !!

      August 26, 2011 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
    • mom

      and your ugliness is showing and you are not even out of space...you can not be human to call another human ugly. you are probably something else. a woman like you carried her for 9months and birth her. i am sure you don't even know what that means hmmm...what a pity

      August 26, 2011 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • mehdi

      "disjustin" and "mom", sorry but i cant help it, no matter how you're going to deal with it : i just find this woman ugly, or esthetically very unattractive, or physically repulsive to me.... that has nothing to do with being a human being or nine months before birth or anything else about ... "the jedhi" ??? have you been smoking bad reefer "disjustin" ? what the hell are you taliking about...
      "mom" : even if you're an uneducated american please note that mehdi is a guy's name, not a woman's in case you are open enough to learn something hat simple...
      so "disjustin" go concentrate on laura bush when you go to bed and before jerking off, that's if you can get it on, huh ?
      and "Silly Me" : yes, i do find Gadhafi is very ugly too... good to be able to admit things without absolutely having to go totally crazy and writing stupid replies... ... so long...

      August 26, 2011 at 5:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • mehdi

      "mom" : i reassure you, i know what that means... a little background that might convince you : i wrote four best seller novels, i have an engineering degree in geophysics and one in anthropology, i play the trumpet in a jazz quartet, i fly a 747 jumbo jet as a captain, and i refused to pause for an agency as a male model. so you might as well reserve you pity for someone else. maybe someone... your level ?

      August 26, 2011 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Cedar Rapids

    It was the personal nude photos that were the real eye opener.

    August 26, 2011 at 11:01 am | Report abuse |
  13. tluv00

    Good thing the pictures are laminated. Wouldn't want any smudging.

    August 26, 2011 at 11:01 am | Report abuse |
  14. newms

    We should have her to him.

    August 26, 2011 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
  15. Timtim

    He likes and admires her and he openly said so. The album with pictures is just an album with pictures. There is nothing perverted in it. I dont understand why people find this weird or creepy. YOU, the person reading this comment, is the real weirdo (unless you agree with me 🙂

    August 26, 2011 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |
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