Gaddafi’s not-so-secret crush

Many unusual items have been unearthered at Gaddafi's compound in the Libyan capital since it was raided by rebels earlier this week, but perhaps the most surprising discovery comes in the form of a photo album - dedicated entirely to former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

The album features blow-up photos of Rice, whom Gaddafi once described as a "darling."

The American politician met Gaddafi on an official state trip to Libya under the Bush administration in 2008. She was the first senior diplomat to visit the country in over 50 years and clearly made a strong impression on the now deposed Libyan leader.

But Gaddafi was a fan even before he met the Republican politician, telling a reporter from al-Jazeera in 2007 that "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," he said. "Leezza, Leezza, Leezza. ... I love her very much. I admire her, and I'm proud of her, because she's a black woman of African origin."

During Rice's Libyan visit, he showered her with gifts including a lute, a locket featuring a likeness to himself inside and a diamond ring. The pair (pictured together above) also shared a dinner together.

Rebel fighters discovered the album at Gaddafi's former home in Tripoli yesterday (26 August). Rice has not yet responded to requests for comment, but State Department spokewoman Victoria Nuland was clearly not moved by news of his infatuation.

"I don't need to see the photos,' she told the Daily Mail. "But bizarre and creepy are good adjectives to describe much of Gadaffi's behavior. So (it) doesn't surprise me. It's deeply bizarre and deeply creepy, though, if it is as you described."

Picture credits: Press Association and Getty Images