Life can be surreal at times. Earlier this year, I spent nearly three hours in a tent in Tripoli, sitting by a fire and drinking tea. The first surreal thing about this experience was the setting: a tent located in a grassy park where horses, camels, and goats grazed, walled off by a series of gates from the city that surrounded them. The second was the backdrop: the ruins of a building U.S. warplanes had bombed in 1986. The third was the identity of my host: Libya’s longtime ruler, Muammar Qaddafi—the very man many believe those planes were trying to kill.