Tag Archives: Lockerbie

Cindy, Lockerbie, recruiters, organ theft

Four great reads: AntiWar.com’s John Walsh describes Cindy Sheehan’s reception at Martha’s Vineyard: Barack Obama to Cindy Sheehan: get lost. John Pilger decodes the indignation about Scotland’s release of a terrorist: Lockerbie: Megrahi was framed. Mother Jones’ David Goodman details the military recruitment of American school kids: A Few Good Kids. An interesting inquiry into Professor Yehuda Hiss and Palestinian organ theft: The autopsy surgeon Aftonbladet forgot.

Americans want clemency only for their own

How gracious of us! The US is beneficiary of a succession of clemencies shown to American citizens. Iran releases an American propagandist, North Korea forgives two more, Myanmar allows us to extricate a oddly errant citizen. All of them Americans, for which we are thankful, but still indignant and unrepentant. When Scotland elects to release a Libyan prisoner on compassionate grounds, the US president cannot object enough.

Do I compare a terrorist against journalists; someone who’s been incarcerated since 1990, versus 2009; someone extradited based on dubious testimony versus Americans caught red-handed?

When Abdel Basset al-Megrahi returned to a hero’s welcome in Libya, American family members of Lockerbie victims are incensed. The man spent nearly two decades in prison, maintaining his innocence throughout. Al-Megrahi only dropped his appeal when the Scottish court indicated it might grant him clemency. Nevertheless, the usual parade of American terrorism-decriers still want his blood. The families of victims received compensation strong-armed from Libya. They have to believe in al-Megrahi’s guilt or else question their entitlement to the payments.

Do Americans know the evidence upon which Abdel Basset al-Megrahi was convicted? Forensic experts found fragments of a shirt thought to have been wrapped around the bomb aboard Pan Am Flight 103. The garment was traced to a small slothing store in Malta, where the clerk identified al-Megrahi months later, from a photograph shown him by US investigators, as the customer who purchased the item.

Al-Megrahi made this statement upon his release:

“I always believed I would come back if justice prevailed … I say in the clearest possible terms, which I hope every person in every land will hear – all of this I have had to endure for something that I did not do,”

Who put the bomb into the suitcase, and who got the suitcase on the plane? How did the suitcase bomb escape detection by airport security? Was the package sneaked past inspectors through a security breach created by US law enforcement, to smuggle heroin across the Atlantic in a sting operation targeting a drug ring?

Al-Megrahi wanted such questions answered, to bring to light his innocence. The great travesty of al-Megrahi’s release is that there will be no further scrutiny. All the international participants, it’s being reported rather candidly, are relieved. The US is bellowing not about the miscarriage of justice, but about letting a non-American off the hook.

Lockerbie bomber(s) get away for good

Libyan Abdel Basset al-Megrahi has been imprisoned in the UK since 2000, for the 1988 bombing of PanAm Flight 103 over Lockerbie Scotland. Libya paid restitution for the act, but maintain their –and al-Megrahi’s– innocence. It was announced yesterday that Al-Megrahi is being freed on humanitarian grounds, because he’s been diagnosed with prostate cancer, and not in exchange for his dropping the appeal of his conviction. Thus ends further inquiry into who else was suspected of responsibility for the suitcase bomb.
Cockpit of Flight103

–which resulted in the deaths of 270 people.

Scottish MP Tam Dalyell has cause for suspicion, as documented in the 1995 The Maltese Doublecross. Prevented from being widely screened, its first venue fire-bombed, the documentary was successfully quashed by the US and UK governments. Lockerbie victim survivors opposed evidence that threatened the compensation they were seeking from Libya.

Maltese Doublecross director Allan Francovich survived attempts to run him off the road, for two years. In 1997 Francovich died while in the custody of US customs agents in Houston, age 56.

Let’s just say that Francovich’s findings bore the same elements and cast of characters as the investigations of award-winning also-dead journalist Gary Webb, found suicided in 2005, with two gunshots to the head.