In the early 1970s, Malta had a radical leftist government whose prime minster, the Hon. Dom Mintoff despised the West. He had ended all British and NATO military presence on the island and had made approaches to Eastern European and Chinese Governments. He however was most welcoming to his immediate neighbour in the South - the Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya - Libya to you and me. Colonel Muammar Gaddafi was a frequent visitor to the Maltese Islands and on one visit, he came to the magnificent Prime Minister's office at Auberge de Castille in Valletta - which is where I met or rather saw him, at the bottom of the stairs leading to the impressive main entrance. I was an 11 year old, walking home after being dropped off near Castille by the school bus. The one vivid memory I have of the occasion was how shiny and large the epaulettes on his uniform were.
He may have been a cruel mad dog, but the manner of his passing and all the accompanying footage have really sickened me.