Appointments were made without relevance to merit. A nervous civil service never questioned the coming and goings. At the Interior Ministry I asked the man in the biggest office (with a broken fax machine and no working telephone) if he were the minister.
"Maybe," he replied, adding that he had been last year, then someone else had been appointed while he was still in post, but had subsequently . . . er . . . left town . . . "So, maybe I’m the minister," he added helpfully.
Kate Adie on Gaddafi. More here.
"No-one died here," shouts another of the regime’s supporters, addressing a monologue at the visiting reporters. "There are no shortages of food or petrol. It is safe here. There is no violence. Everything is good."
An American colleague is confronted by a man who speaks at him for several minutes pouing out his praise for Colonel Gaddafi. When the man is finally finished, he asks: "Did someone pay you to say that?" The man quickly agrees.