Thursday, August 20, 2009

Lockerbie non-bomber to be released

It seems that Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi, the Lockerbie bomber, is to be released on compassionate grounds.
The Lockerbie bomber is to be released on compassionate grounds, the Scottish Government has announced.

Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi, 57, was jailed in 2001 for the atrocity which claimed 270 lives in 1988.

Scottish Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill revealed that the Libyan, who has terminal prostate cancer, would be allowed to return to his homeland.

The US Government said it "deeply regretted" the Scottish Government's decision to release Megrahi.

The only reason that the US Government regrets it is that they are shit-scared that al-Megrahi might reveal what a fucking stitch-up his trial was.

Still, this development will make Shane Greer very unhappy.
No really, shocking though it is, I can confirm that I agree with Hillary Clinton (about something at least): Lockerbie bomber, Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi, should not be released from prison or transferred to Libya to serve out his prison term at home.

To listen to the commentary at the moment you’d think the Scottish justice secretary, Kenny MacAskill, had a tough decision in front of him. Really? I mean, it looks pretty simple to me: a man convicted (only eight years ago) of killing 270 people would like to be released from prison because he’s ill. Solution: tough luck, you were convicted of killing 270 people.

How many of the people who were aboard Pan Am flight 103 in 1988 have been able to go home to see their families? Oh yeah, none.

Well, might I suggest, Shane, that instead of taking this shit at face value, you go and do some research into the evidence—or lack of it—and the conduct of the trial—which was condemned by independent UN observer as bringing "the entire Scottish legal system into disrepute".

There is, you see, a very simple reason why al-Megrahi should be released:


Our government know that this man is innocent; the US government knows that this man is innocent; and the Libyan government knows it too. It is pretty certain that the Iranian government—which, entirely coincidentally, had a passenger airliner shot down by an American warship shortly before the Lockerbie bombing—also knows this.

I wrote about this some years ago, when I was just starting this blogging lark...
The excellent Private Eye special report written by the late Paul Foot, Lockerbie: The Flight From Justice highlights the considerable evidence for [Iran being responsible for the Lockerbie bombing] at the time.

Around the time of the first Gulf War, when we needed the Iranians onside, all investigations into the Lockerbie affair were quietly dropped. When they resumed after the war, it was found that several incriminating bits of evidence had been "misplaced".

Two things about the affair are certain: firstly, the man who is currently serving 27 years in a Scottish prison did not do it. Secondly, the politicians who organised, and the spooks who were present at, the trial (which was described by the UN observer, a Chilean professor whose report was printed in full in the Eye report, as having brought "the entire Scottish legal system into disrepute") know that he did not do it.

Libya agreed to go along with the whole thing because it would get them back onto the USA's trading list: that was the deal. And when you consider the amount that Libya could get out of trading with the US, the £6 billion compensation to the victims is a paltry sum.

The full report of another observer, Dr Hans Kochler, can be found online, but here are some broad points that he raises.
  1. It was a consistent pattern during the whole trial that — as an apparent result of political interests and considerations — efforts were undertaken to withhold substantial information from the Court.

    By not having pursued thoroughly and carefully an alternative theory, the Court seems to have accepted that the whole legal process was seriously flawed in regard to the requirements of objectivity and due process.

  2. As a result of this situation, the undersigned has reached the conclusion that foreign governments or (secret) governmental agencies may have been allowed, albeit indirectly, to determine, to a considerable extent, which evidence was made available to the Court.

  1. A general pattern of the trial consisted in the fact that virtually all people presented by the prosecution as key witnesses were proven to lack credibility to a very high extent, in certain cases even having openly lied to the Court.

  1. Furthermore, the Opinion of the Court seems to be inconsistent in a basic respect: while the first accused was found “guilty”, the second accused was found “not guilty”. It is to be noted that the judgement, in the latter’s case, was not “not proven”, but “not guilty”. This is totally incomprehensible for any rational observer when one considers that the indictment in its very essence was based on the joint action of the two accused in Malta.

  2. The Opinion of the Court is exclusively based on circumstantial evidence and on a series of highly problematic inferences. As to the undersigned’s knowledge, there is not one single piece of material evidence linking the two accused to the crime.

  3. This leads the undersigned to the suspicion that political considerations may have been overriding a strictly judicial evaluation of the case and thus may have adversely affected the outcome of the trial. This may have a profound impact on the evaluation of the professional reputation and integrity of the panel of three Scottish judges.

  4. In the above context, the undersigned has reached the general conclusion that the outcome of the trial may well have been determined by political considerations and may to a considerable extent have been the result of more or less openly exercised influence from the part of actors outside the judicial framework — facts which are not compatible with the basic principle of the division of powers and with the independence of the judiciary, and which put in jeopardy the very rule of law and the confidence citizens must have in the legitimacy of state power and the functioning of the state’s organs - whether on the traditional national level or in the framework of international justice as it is gradually being established through the United Nations Organization.

  5. On the basis of the above observations and evaluation, the undersigned has — to his great dismay — reached the conclusion that the trial, seen in its entirety, was not fair and was not conducted in an objective manner. Indeed, there are many more questions and doubts at the end of the trial than there were at its beginning.

So, having quite deliberately made al-Megrahi a scapegoat for political power-broking—and imprisoned him not only as a sop to the families but also to stop people asking awkward questions—I think that the least that we can do is let the poor bastard go home to die, if he wants to.

Although I wouldn't be surprised if al-Megrahi conveniently pegged out long before he leaves these shores...


SaltedSlug said...

Ta for that DK. Knew there was reason to consider the conviction bollocks, but couldn't remember/find the facts around it.

Not much in the way of reporting amongst the MSM on the dodginess of the trial, is there?

Captain Ranty said...

I reckon he was sacrified as well.

The $6 billion really is nothing. Halliburton will invest over $42 billion in Libya over the next five years. As a frequent visitor to Libya I know that the real figure that is being invested in Libya's oil and gas industry would drop the strongest of jaws.

They have a handle on their economy too. The price of a loaf of bread hasn't changed in the nine years I have been going there. Three years ago Uncle Moumar doubled the amount of money those on social security get. They thought they had won the lottery.

Send the poor bugger home. As soon as he is on the flight to Tripoli, look for the fuckers that actually committed this atrocity.

Mike Rouse said...

I actually agree with his release too. Even if he did do it.

wh00ps said...

has the appeal finished/been dropped? that might have something to do with it. while there is still i conviction there's no need to look too deeply into the case...

Thomas B said...

Regardless of the flaws in the court case, that should not have been taken into consideration by the relevant minister.

The last thing we want is politicans retrying cases that should be dealt with in the courts!

assegai mike said...

I know that those who do bother their arse to ask awkward questions are fingering Iran, but I clearly remember in the immediate aftermath of Lockerbie that the Syrians were strong early runners in terms of chief suspects, and that seemed plausible. Then suddenly this Libyan fellow pops up out of nowhere. Always thought the whole thing was extremely sus. If I were a victim relative, I'd be extremely fucked off if the actual perps got off scot-free (scuse pun).

Devil's Kitchen said...


"I know that those who do bother their arse to ask awkward questions are fingering Iran, but I clearly remember in the immediate aftermath of Lockerbie that the Syrians were strong early runners in terms of chief suspects..."

The Eye report came down very firmly on the side of Syrian terrorists paid by Iran.


Wossat? said...

The Private Eye investigation, culminating in the seminal report by the sadly missed Paul Foot, should be dusted off and brought back into the public eye.

The festering piece of shit being passed off as a fair trial needs to be investigated further because, if the powers that be can do this to an innocent man in the name of political expedience, they can do it to any one of us.

I don't expect the MSM to look further than the victory wave given by al-Megrahi as he stepped off that plane. Cunts!


Yes Dr Kochler,reminicent of the nurnberg trials,what!

Chris R said...

I for one am very moved by Scotland's decision to release this dying man. I don't think I would have had the courage to do this.

Ronk said...

I wonder how Jesus would have handled this?

Andrew Ian Dodge said...

Although quoting the UN on the trial is probably not the best. Their record of impartiality in events involving Muslims is not exactly stellar of late.

David said...

Why should a murderer be released. At least in the US courts there is no second trial-The person serves his time. Just because he's sick doesn't mean he didn't kill all those people, Don't look for reasons to take the blame off him because you believe you are smarter then your system.

Anonymous said...

Wow I never saw that one coming - the man aint guilty Private Eye said so!!!

The trial went to court, his defence could not convince the court that he did not do it and the prosecution offered enough evidence to convict.

If you don't like the result pursue the appeal - this is a farce.

If Beano told you that Myra Hindley was innocent - I suppose you would have been all up in arms at that!


mitch said...

So what did he get or his family ? to put your hand up for this is no small favour, any ideas?

Lincoln County said...

You Scottish really stuck it to the Americans. You should be proud.

Antipholus Papps said...

I wonder how Jesus would have handled this?

Jesus would have kicked Gadaffi's arse! Jesus rocks.

Iron Chef Kosher! said...

If he didn't do it, the Libyans are sure treating him like he did...

eyes wide open said...

"Wow I never saw that one coming - the man aint guilty Private Eye said so!!!"

When a judge only trial reaches a verdict it does so on only the evidence it is allowed to consider, the trial was not allowed to consider huge amounts of evidence that would have definitely precluded a guilty verdict. I am stunned at the huge swathes of unquestioning people on this world who want only to be lead by the nose - instead of being told what to think - actually take the time to read Paul Foots exhaustive work.

This is why when judicial enquiries are launched on hot button issues the terms of reference are framed VERY carefully to make damn sure the outcome is known before the enquiry begins. You folks clearly know nothing of how politics works.

Also Jesus would have forgave him and released him, but then again knowing this would involve reading and understanding the new testament also.

"Although quoting the UN on the trial is probably not the best. Their record of impartiality in events involving Muslims is not exactly stellar of late." - citation needed, no proof offered, suspected Daily Mail reader.

Henry North London said...

That WPC she was sacrificed aswell

the a&e charge nurse said...

Is there anybody in a British jail that has not been stitched up by the authorities?

Our record when comes to dealing with terrorist suspects is hardly something to be proud of.