Gaddafi: Obsessed By a Ruthless, Messianic Vision

In the movie reel of his imagination, he sees himself standing alone in the desert, silhouetted against the moon, swathed in traditional Bedouin robes, a farsighted prophet of Islam and the mighty creator of the Great Arab Nation, stretching from the warm Persian Gulf to the dark Atlantic Ocean--a nation that would eclipse the West in power and glory and purity. Muammar Gaddafi is not a man of modest ambitions. Nor one without a sense of backlighting.

But his messianic vision, like the turbans in which he wraps himself, does not camouflage his vicious methods and his ruthless fanaticism. He believes...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!