This is a bit off the usual topic, but a few months ago I mentioned the strange story of Saadi el-Qaddafi, son of Muamar, who had invested $100 million of the family money in Natural Selection, a Hollywood production company responsible for a few films in 2009-2010. The point of the post was to compare the murky MPAA claims of connections between terrorist activity and film piracy with this rather clear and public connection between terrorism and film financing.
In that post, I referenced BBC stories on Saadi’s role in Benghazi, including reporting that he had ordered soldiers to fire on civilians. At least one more recent report also had him leading government forces in Tripoli.
Then there’s the NYT account from today:
On the day the uprising broke out in Benghazi, Saadi was touring the city as an emissary from his father to its alienated citizens. A person who was with him that day said he kept trying in vain to mollify residents with assurances of development or other help from his father. Later, when a Libyan woman was arrested in Tripoli for breaking into a hotel to tell foreign reporters about her rape by Qaddafi militiamen, Saadi interceded — over the objections of many in his father’s government — to help her tell her story to CNN….
After Tripoli fell and the family went into hiding, an associate said, Saadi continued to hope that he could broker a peace agreement or unity government to forestall more bloodshed.
Has Saadi been cleared of the Benghazi charges? There are two rather different accounts of Saadi’s actions in circulation. One of them must be wrong.