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Opulence in ruins: Gadhafi family life revealed in the aftermath
September 6, 2011 10:50 AM   Subscribe

Following Libyian rebels taking Tripoli and Gadhafi's family fleeing the area, pictures of Gadhafi's family compound are surfacing. "The value of these images isn't in their artistry or aesthetic, but in their storytelling information as we seek to uncover more behind the scenes of the Khadafi regime that spanned forty-two years." Also found: an album filled with photos of [Gadhafi's] 'darling' Condoleezza Rice. posted by filthy light thief (65 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
Not that I ever really thought that Gadafi could make a comeback, but a person's position as an iron-fisted dictator is probably irreparably diminished once their subjects find the spank material.
posted by Doublewhiskeycokenoice at 10:52 AM on September 6, 2011 [6 favorites]


So Hinckley did it all for Jodie Foster, and Gadhafi apparently has his own little muse going. . .

Very sweet!
posted by Danf at 10:57 AM on September 6, 2011


212 thousand dollars' worth of gifts when she visited him a few years ago, and all of it supposedly in a warehouse where they keep all the disallowed gifts to state from world leaders. Wonder if there's any overlap with other safekept warehouses...?
posted by carsonb at 11:01 AM on September 6, 2011


Gadhafi's various name spellings are a source of frustration for programmers. As that linked page notes, LISP had it figured out first.
posted by Jpfed at 11:02 AM on September 6, 2011 [6 favorites]




Does that look a little like our kitchen island?
posted by griphus at 11:02 AM on September 6, 2011 [19 favorites]


Carpet in the pool room? No, Momar. No.
posted by Sys Rq at 11:07 AM on September 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


and all of it supposedly in a warehouse where they keep all the disallowed gifts to state from world leaders

*Runs to office of Secretary of State with bloody dot-matrix printout*
posted by dhartung at 11:15 AM on September 6, 2011 [3 favorites]


I've seen at least one photo elsewhere of a full-size painting of the main character from the rebooted Prince of Persia games. That struck me as very odd.
posted by codacorolla at 11:16 AM on September 6, 2011


I can't wait until our liberators report back to the homeland on the wretched excesses of our leaders.
posted by Legomancer at 11:17 AM on September 6, 2011 [12 favorites]


That gold mermaid couch is insane. I do not know what those folks on the Daily Mash were talking about. Anyone who has a gold mermaid couch must be a tyrannical despot; any tyrannical despot probably has a gold mermaid couch. The fact is as true as it ever was, even if there happen to be some sweet Scandinavian designs scattered around the compound. One sleek modern bathroom does not indicate good taste. One gold mermaid couch, on the other hand, is a clear indication of poor taste. Especially when that couch has the face of one of your relatives. Because couches aren't supposed to have faces at all.
posted by brina at 11:18 AM on September 6, 2011 [5 favorites]


Because couches aren't supposed to have faces at all.

Feh... how embarrassing for you to make a statement like this and show how common you are. Plebe.
posted by codacorolla at 11:20 AM on September 6, 2011 [4 favorites]


Exactly, only your loved ones and boats have faces.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:21 AM on September 6, 2011


"I can't wait until our liberators report back to the homeland on the wretched excesses of our leaders."

This. Third world dictators can't hold a candle to US wealth disparity.
posted by jetsetsc at 11:23 AM on September 6, 2011 [4 favorites]


It was 'darling Leezza' per the photos splashed around our local paper.
posted by infini at 11:29 AM on September 6, 2011


"I can't wait until our liberators report back to the homeland on the wretched excesses of our leaders."

Why do the liberators have to do it when they sem to be dying to get their own reality shows already?

Incidentally, as to this supposed Condi obsession, how does it differ from this?
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 11:30 AM on September 6, 2011


A Condoleeza Rice themed stroke book is a new high in lows.
posted by Renoroc at 11:30 AM on September 6, 2011 [3 favorites]


Third world dictators can't hold a candle to US wealth disparity.

My guess is the opulence is a bit less than you'd expect. Though obviously I don't have enough money to understand the mindset, I would think that there are other, subtler, indications of great wealth among those who measure their net worth with ten or more digits.
posted by Mooski at 11:38 AM on September 6, 2011


Think how much you can save on security if instead of hiding your opulence behind closed doors you have a media empire that can convince people that it's morally wrong to "steal" (i.e. tax) you and that anyone who isn't a gazillionaire just isn't trying hard enough.
posted by DU at 11:52 AM on September 6, 2011 [12 favorites]


"Me? No, it was not me. You must mean that guy, Khadafi. See, our names are spelled very similarly.

"Yes. Yes. No trouble at all. Always a pleasure to talk to the UN. Thank you, and have a nice day."
posted by mmrtnt at 11:53 AM on September 6, 2011 [3 favorites]


Think how much you can save on security if instead of hiding your opulence behind closed doors you have a media empire that can convince people that it's morally wrong to "steal" (i.e. tax) you and that anyone who isn't a gazillionaire just isn't trying hard enough.

I'm not sure there is much of a savings at all.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 11:59 AM on September 6, 2011


The 'NATO coalition' forces should use Condi as bait to smoke out Gadhafi. It's the kind of action she would have approved of.
posted by grounded at 12:11 PM on September 6, 2011 [3 favorites]


jetsetsc: Third world dictators can't hold a candle to US wealth disparity.

There are two factors to consider when comparing dictators to wealthy people in the US: the span from low to high, and how low (and how many) are the lowest. With 30% unemployment and one-third of Libyans living at or below the national poverty line, the differences between a lavish compound and a couple really lavish complexes around the world seems to fade.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:19 PM on September 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


I dunno. I've seen enough episodes of "Cribs" to know that plain drywall painted white, track lighting and/or recessed halogen lighting, black or beige granite counters, wall-to-wall shag in beige, amazingly anonymous leather couches, and a few decorative touches that look like holdovers from a Pier One sale are about as wild as it gets with the American ultra-wealthy.

Sometimes, there are "artistic" stock-art prints of pool balls framed in the game room, where the pool table is.

It's pretty depressing actually... all that avarice, and all you have to show for it is a middle-of-the-road home-theater setup? On the other hand, their Italian villas and mega-yachts probably came pre-stocked with opulence, and a private south pacific island is hard to haul outside the McMansion to show off.
posted by Slap*Happy at 12:23 PM on September 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


Plus a hidden staircase to an escape tunnel...for gnomes.
posted by gottabefunky at 12:28 PM on September 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


Its the Puritan heritage.
posted by infini at 12:28 PM on September 6, 2011


Now, now, Slap*Happy, someone with a single charted R&B release hardly counts as "American ultra-wealthy". For that you need to watch Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 12:29 PM on September 6, 2011


Plus a hidden staircase to an escape tunnel...for gnomes.

That's probably a wine cellar.
posted by Mooski at 12:30 PM on September 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


Oh Condi Condi!
posted by rollbiz at 12:30 PM on September 6, 2011


Slap*Happy: "I dunno. I've seen enough episodes of "Cribs" to know that plain drywall painted white, track lighting and/or recessed halogen lighting, black or beige granite counters, wall-to-wall shag in beige, amazingly anonymous leather couches, and a few decorative touches that look like holdovers from a Pier One sale are about as wild as it gets with the American ultra-wealthy. "

Those are people with some money. For the ultra-wealthy's version of cribs pickup a copy of Architectural Digest. Even then, you only get to see their vacation homes and Manhattan condos be-speckled in tacky high-end artwork, furniture and an obscene amount of thick Taschen books, but never their real homes.
posted by wcfields at 12:33 PM on September 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


You know who has the most opulent and lavish (but non-Trumpy) living quarters of all living persons?

Wayne Gretzky. No kidding.
posted by Sys Rq at 12:49 PM on September 6, 2011


Jack Donaghy's gonna be pissed.
And Kim Jong-Il abducted another one of his girlfriends. Kid's got serious chicks-with-dictators issues.
posted by kirkaracha at 12:57 PM on September 6, 2011


You know who has the most opulent and lavish (but non-Trumpy) living quarters of all living persons?

Wayne Gretzky. No kidding.


I have never seen it, but I can imagine his home might look like what a working-class kid from Brantford might do with umpty-million dollars.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 1:02 PM on September 6, 2011


You don't expect Janet Jones to live in a dump, do you?
posted by Trurl at 1:06 PM on September 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


I am disappointed by the lack of petite lap giraffes.
posted by elizardbits at 1:10 PM on September 6, 2011 [10 favorites]


Good luck, Libya! It's all you guys now.. but look towards Norway for answers concerning oil questions.

Btw, I've always heard that Condoleeza Rice wanks off to Bush v2 herself, partially based upon some husband comment maybe? Although Dan Savage botched that one.
posted by jeffburdges at 1:41 PM on September 6, 2011


When you're truly rich, the entire world supports you, and your every activity seems as natural as breathing. Skiing in the alps, winter on the private island, get together with the boys from the board to talk over a merger, on and on for your entire life. When your old you get to write a book and everyone will read it to learn your secrets.

But when you're a dictator with essentially stolen wealth, there's always the threat that you could lose everything. You have to carefully groom and occasionally cull your underlings, check your sons and daughters for disloyalty, put off that trip to Dubai because there might be a revolution if you leave the country, and so on. You enjoy your mermaid couches and ridiculous opulence behind heavy metal gates and always, always keep a chopper ready and waiting.
posted by Kevin Street at 1:48 PM on September 6, 2011 [5 favorites]


Ugh. I don't agree with her policy but I feel sorry for Rice. Given his comments prior to her visit, if I were in her position going there would've felt like prostitution.
posted by schroedinger at 2:05 PM on September 6, 2011


dhartung: " *Runs to office of Secretary of State with bloody dot-matrix printout*"

I told you that I could not get out of the Pentagon!
posted by zarq at 2:07 PM on September 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


Because couches aren't supposed to have faces at all.

Hedonism Bot is a couch and has a face. Would anyone seriously argue that Hedonism Bot isn't supposed to exist?
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 2:08 PM on September 6, 2011 [5 favorites]


My wife argues that very thing every time Hedonism Bot shows up. That and a Pavlovian "I fucking hate Hedonism Bot!" response similar to the one she has (and I share) for Bobby Flay.

Considering that we own a dog named Phillip J. Fry, this is a pretty significant problem.
posted by stet at 2:41 PM on September 6, 2011


Yes, I misspelled his name when I had the tags made up.
posted by stet at 2:42 PM on September 6, 2011


Steve Earle likes her too.
posted by Flunkie at 3:34 PM on September 6, 2011


This guy already has my decadent, opulent ultra-rich home. Bastard.
posted by Zed at 3:37 PM on September 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


Before you read this list of possible spellings, test yourself on the possibilities on Sporcle!
posted by naoko at 3:47 PM on September 6, 2011


What a sick, narcissistic mind -- concerned only with torture, grasping desperately at power, and ill-gotten oil riches.

Condi can go to hell.
posted by benzenedream at 3:48 PM on September 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


"yu wer ma CONDEE GURL"
posted by clavdivs at 4:04 PM on September 6, 2011


Arab leaders have tried to woo Condoleezza Rice with jewelry before, not that they'll get anywhere with that.
posted by jonp72 at 4:08 PM on September 6, 2011


Amusingly enough, Sporcle does not recognize the spelling Qaddhafi, which is close to 'transcribe the way it's actually spelled without diacritics,' but it does recognize silly ones like Kazzafi, Khadaffy and Quathafi. Maybe that's intentional.
posted by nangar at 4:28 PM on September 6, 2011


What's really impressive is that those aren't the good couches. The good couches would still have the plastic covers on them, to keep them nice.
posted by Joe in Australia at 4:31 PM on September 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


How unexpected to see all those empty swimming pools. You'd think with all the money at their disposal, they could've just built a dedicated skateboard bowl instead.
posted by UbuRoivas at 4:45 PM on September 6, 2011


Wayne Gretzky. No kidding.

According to ?uestlove, it's actually Will Smith.
posted by axiom at 5:14 PM on September 6, 2011


million bucks/4 songs
no wonder they lost power.
posted by clavdivs at 5:14 PM on September 6, 2011


Shades of Berchtesgaden, 1945.

Why can't dictators ever hire decent decorators?
posted by IndigoJones at 5:51 PM on September 6, 2011


Why can't dictators ever hire decent decorators?

Decent decorators tend to exert their own will over the project, which has a side effect of being fatal.
posted by codacorolla at 6:13 PM on September 6, 2011


Per his kid's passport, the family spells it Gathafi, which at least gets bonus points for novelty.
posted by Copronymus at 6:19 PM on September 6, 2011


The truth is that we're in yet another war for oil, and we've hired al-queda to do our dirty work. The story is just another instance of the "minute of hate" that George Orwell described in the book 1984.

The real power is vested in people who never appear in the press, except when they get themselves into disfavor with their peers, and suddenly find their normally secluded indiscretions in the full public glare of yet another minute of hate.

It's all planned distractions and misdirection. Meanwhile prices seem to have doubled in the last few years, and the official inflation level is about 1%.

But no, I'm not bitter... ;-)
posted by MikeWarot at 7:19 PM on September 6, 2011


Decent decorators tend to exert their own will over the project, which has a side effect of being fatal.

The Triumph (of bad design) Of Over the Will (of decent designers)
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 7:25 PM on September 6, 2011


I hope she gets teased.

Condi and Gadhafi
Sitting in a tree
Kay eye double ess
Eye en gee!
posted by uncanny hengeman at 7:55 PM on September 6, 2011 [1 favorite]




That tiny spiral staircase absolutely creeps me the fuck out, probably the same way the trypophobes feel about [holey thing]. Why, yes, I am claustrophobic, why do you ask? (shuddering, shuddering, shuddering.) Even those well lit, wide, obviously safe wine cellars give me a metric crapload of heebiejeebie.
posted by seanmpuckett at 5:36 AM on September 7, 2011 [1 favorite]


That's not a wine cellar. The purpose of the mini-staircase is to give the kids a quick way out that an adult would have trouble navigating, especially with a weapon at the ready. There are similar features in medieval castles.
posted by Slap*Happy at 7:44 AM on September 7, 2011




MikeWarot,


you are backing up your claim by pointing to a few individuals who had pretty questionable ties and pretending that the whole of the libyan revolution represented by them? And then you are making the leap that the "we've" hired them?

Have you spoken to any Libyans before coming to that conclusion?

Followup: Do you think the initial protests in February were some sort of Western conspiracy?
posted by mulligan at 10:27 AM on September 7, 2011


Legomancer: "I can't wait until our liberators report back to the homeland on the wretched excesses of our leaders"

In America, opulence and disparity of wealth is celebrated and revered by bragging about it on television
posted by I am the Walrus at 2:22 PM on September 7, 2011


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