2 September, 2009 — Anti-Empire Report, Number 73
‘And on the most exalted throne in the world sits nothing but a man’s arse.’ — Montaigne
If there’s anyone out there who is not already thoroughly cynical about those on the board of directors of the planet, the latest chapter in the saga of the bombing of PanAm 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland might just be enough to push them over the edge.
Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi, the only person ever convicted for the December 21, 1988 bombing, was released from his Scottish imprisonment August 21 supposedly because of his terminal cancer and sent home to Libya, where he received a hero’s welcome. President Obama said that the jubilant welcome Megrahi received was ‘highly objectionable’. His White House spokesman Robert Gibbs added that the welcoming scenes in Libya were ‘outrageous and disgusting’. British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said he was ‘angry and repulsed’, while his foreign secretary, David Miliband, termed the celebratory images ‘deeply upsetting.’ Miliband warned: ‘How the Libyan government handles itself in the next few days will be very significant in the way the world views Libya’s reentry into the civilized community of nations.'
Ah yes, ‘the civilized community of nations’, that place we so often hear about but so seldom get to actually see. American officials, British officials, and Scottish officials know that Megrahi is innocent. They know that Iran financed the PFLP-GC, a Palestinian group, to carry out the bombing with the cooperation of Syria, in retaliation for the American naval ship, the Vincennes, shooting down an Iranian passenger plane in July of the same year, which took the lives of more people than did the 103 bombing. And it should be pointed out that the Vincennes captain, plus the officer in command of air warfare, and the crew were all awarded medals or ribbons afterward. No one in the US government or media found this objectionable or outrageous, or disgusting or repulsive. The United States has always insisted that the shooting down of the Iranian plane was an ‘accident’. Why then give awards to those responsible?