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The truths they don't want you to read....

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Lockerbie 'bomber' - not dead yet.

The sound of politicians scurrying away from their decisions is becoming tiring.

When Labour were in Government - remember then? - they took a rather schitzophrenic approach to the decision.

On one hand, they were glad to palm off the decision to anyone else, knowing the shitstorm it would stir up; whilst on the other, they were relucatant to cede any powerrs or give any type of credence to the Scottish Government.

The Scottish Government played the humanitarian card, at the time, and tried to claim the moral high ground, but the refusal of al-Megrahi to stick to his end of the bargain and shuffle off this mortal coil at a speedy rate has caused there to be renewed political fallout.

And you can understand why, even if you don't agree with any of it.

No-one seems prepared to justify their actions, all blaming each other, and allowing the Americans to seek vengeance in the name of justice and to make the decision entirlely political again.

Which is where it started, if you read the statements from Holyrood and Westminster carefully, with each blaming the other for making shady deals.

The truth will out, eventually, but in the meantime there is a hugely unedifying spectacle of everyone distancing themselves from any responsibility, whilst getting a kicking by the Americans.

As an aside, I understand that like every other prisoner released early, Mr al-Megrahi must report to a supervising Social Worker. I'm told he doesn't abide by these terms, but having been sent from the country by the Government, the Government now find itself unable to enforce any of the terms and conditions they set for parole.

All in all an utterly shambolic and disgraceful episode that fails to shed light on the key issues; and one that runs the risk of perpetrating the fog of cover-up and conspiracy, rather than helping to resolve them.


Anonymous said...

The trouble with this whole issue is the mixing of (a) the doubts about the soundness of the conviction and (b) the need to consider compassionate release for convicted prisoners. There is a fair bit of evidence that the decision of Kenny Macaskill was to be compassionate because of doubts about the conviction.
Both aspects should have been kept scrupulously separate; if there is doubt about the convisction, that should be dealt with by the Courts.
Test yourself with this question. Would the letters page of the Herald newspaper be filled with people lauding the Justice Secretary if Peter Tobin's health deteriorated further and he was released to the bosom of his loving family?

Indy said...

There is no evidence whatsoever to suggest that the decision of Kenny MacAskill to be compassionate came about because of doubts about the conviction. In fact he has gone out of his way to say that he does not question the conviction.

It is certainly true that a lot of people question the evidence on which Megrahi was convicted - but that is a wholly separate issue.

Also I cannot agree that everyone is "blaming" each other.

The UK Government alone was responsible for the prison transfer agreement with Libya, over which BP is said to have lobbied them.

The Scottish Government alone was responsible for the compassionate release, over which they had no contact at all with BP.

If US (and some British) politicians and commentators) could just grasp those simple facts there would not be quite so much confusion around the issue.

But as long as they persist in asking the Scottish Government about BP's influence on the PTA and asking the UK Government about the compassionate release process, both governments have no option but to say "sorry, you are asking the wrong person."