Could a lovestruck dictator be the reason why Libya abandoned its weapons of mass destruction program?
The evidence is thin, but Muammar al-Qaddafi appears to have had a crush on Condoleezza Rice, at least that's what a find by rebels at Qaddafi's Tripoli compound have uncovered in the form of a photo album dedicated solely to the former U.S. secretary of state.
Apparently Qaddafi's adoration of Rice was no secret.
"Leezza, Leezza, Leezza ... I love her very much," the colonel reportedly told Al Jazeera in 2007, calling her his "darling black African woman."
Rice had dinner with the despot in 2008 at the compound where the photos were found. At the time, Qaddafi reportedly greeted the secretary of state by putting his hand against his heart, a traditional Arab greeting, but perhaps one more imbued with romance than is the norm.
Qaddafi abandoned his weapons program and accepted responsibility for the 1988 bombing of a plane over Lockerbie, Scotland, in 2003, when Rice was President George W. Bush's national security adviser. The moves put him in good graces with the Bush administration, which lifted his designation as a foreign sponsor of terrorism. In 2006, the U.S. and Libya established full diplomatic relations.
These days, the besieged dictator, overrun by rebel fighters wanting to liberate the country from his 42 years of ironfisted rule, is nowhere to be found.