Back on October 2nd, I wrote a piece here titled “Lockerbie Bomber” case getting fishier and fishier”.
And not long prior to that I wrote a piece titled “Angry about the “Lockerbie bomber” getting released?”.
In both these essays were quite a few links to other information regarding the wholly bogus nature of the “official” Lockerbie story.
Well, 20 years after the fact, and many years after all of this information was publicly known, the BBC decides to finally report the following:
LONDON – A BBC investigation has cast doubt on key evidence in the case against the Libyan convicted of blowing up a US jet over the Scottish town of Lockerbie in 1988, the broadcaster said Wednesday.
A tiny fragment of the timer allegedly used to blow up Pan Am flight 103 — crucial in linking Abdelbaset Ali Mohmet al-Megrahi to the bomb — was not properly tested and was also unlikely to have survived the explosion, it said.
Megrahi was jailed in 2001 for the attack which left 270 people dead, but was controversially released from his Scottish prison in August 2009 because he was suffering from terminal cancer and only had months to live.
Investigators believe the plane bomb was contained in a Toshiba radio cassette player inside a brown suitcase with various items of clothing, and was triggered by a digital timer that was later linked to Libya.
But according to the BBC’s Newsnight programme, the fragment of the timer — found embedded in a charred piece of clothing three weeks after the bombing — was never tested to confirm if it had actually been in a blast.
Even now, they pull back, far back, from the truth of this story. It’s not just that this was “never tested”.
This key piece of evidence was reportedly planted by the CIA.
A fragment of circuit board alleged to have been part of the bomb’s timing mechanism is the sole item of physical evidence linking the two Libyans to the December 1988 bombing. But Tam Dalyell, Labour MP for Linlithgow, declared: “I have come to suspect that the timing device in question was not that of Pan Am 103 but a different timing device that the CIA had picked up from the Libyans … I have been driven to the conclusion that the device was a CIA plant.”
Mr Dalyell, a long-standing critic of US and British government insistence that Libya was behind the attack, said an analysis of the fragment had shown it had been exposed to a temperature of 4,000deg C. But a Swiss police specialist had cast doubt on this, saying the explosion would have lasted only a fraction of a second in outside air temperatures of about minus 40C.
Accusing the Crown Office, the Scottish prosecuting authority, of failing to follow up the right leads, Mr Dalyell said – to strident denials from Lord James Douglas-Hamilton, the Scottish Office minister – that it had allowed itself for six years “to be suborned by political pressure into failing to carry out its duty”.
He said this was a “wicked” dereliction of duty that brought shame on Britain.
That’s from 1995. Thanks, BBC, for being on the ball here!
There’s also this:
Dr Jim Swire, who lost his daughter in the tragedy, describes the ruling of Megrahi as the most disgraceful miscarriages of justice in history, blaming both the Scottish legal system and US intelligence.
“The Americans played their role in the investigation and influenced the prosecution,” Swire told the Scotsman Newspaper.
Top level UK diplomats tend to agree with him, such Oliver Miles, a former British ambassador to Libya.
“No court is likely get to the truth, now that various intelligence agencies have had the opportunity to corrupt the evidence,” Miles told the BBC.
The spectacular decision of the SCCRC is certain to give a second life to the dozen of alternative theories of the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103. Nearly two decades later, the case is back to square one.
Back to square one
Let us give Lord Sutherland, Lord Coulsfield and Lord Maclean some credit. After hearing 230 witnesses and studying 621 exhibits during 84 days of evidence, spread over eight months, the three judges of the Lockerbie trial almost got correctly the date of the worst act of terror in the UK.
In the first line of the first paragraph of the most expensive verdict in history they wrote: “At 1903 hours on 22 December 1988 Pan Am flight 103 fell out of the sky.” As a matter of fact, Pan Am Flight 103 exploded on December 21st 1988.
Michael Scharf is an international law expert at Case Western Reserve University in Ohio. Scharf joined the State Department’s Office of the Legal Adviser for Law Enforcement and Intelligence in April 1989. He was also responsible for drawing up the UN Security Council resolutions that imposed sanctions on Libya in 1992.
“It was a trial where everybody agreed ahead of time that they were just going to focus on these two guys, and they were the fall guys,” Sharf wrote.
“The CIA and the FBI kept the State Department in the dark. It worked for them for us to be fully committed to the theory that Libya was responsible. I helped the counter-terrorism bureau draft documents that described why we thought Libya was responsible, but these were not based on seeing a lot of evidence, but rather on representations from the CIA and FBI and the Department of Justice about what the case would prove and did prove.”
CAMPAIGNERS yesterday renewed calls for the United States to answer fresh questions over a Lockerbie bombing suspect.
Former Labour MP Tam Dalyell and Edinburgh law professor Robert Black urged the Scottish and UK governments to answer reports there is evidence Abu Nidal was a US agent.
They have long believed Abu Nidal, who died in Iraq in 2002, and his Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine General Command were responsible for co-ordinating the bomb that blew up Pan Am flight 103 over Lockerbie on 21 December, 1988 with the loss of 270 lives.
Intelligence reports, said to have been drawn up for Saddam Hussein’s security services, said Kuwaitis had asked Abu Nidal, whose real name was Sabri al-Banna, to find out if al-Qaeda was present in Iraq.
The reports referred to Abu Nidal’s “collusion with both the American and Kuwaiti intelligence apparatuses in co-ordination with Egyptian intelligence”.
There’s plenty here to keep you going for a while. I could keep adding links but I have to run. Basically it all boilws down to this:
And now we have the ridiculous and brazen propaganda of the “crotch bomber”, to justify even more losses to our civil liberties, to justify yet another front on the war (so we can conveniently forget about the last two, amazing how that works), and to give yet more Corporate Welfare to the Military Industrial Complex (full-body scanner contracts for all my friends!).
Almost forgot, WashingtonsBlog has a great piece on this, also. Probably better than this one, he’s amazing whoever he is.
Of course my title to this piece is something of a joke, but who knows? And it made you read the piece, right?
Propaganda of my own. You can claim anything, anything at all, all you need is the question mark at the end.
UPDATED: I literally had to run out before I was completely done earlier, so I wanted to add this. It’s from one of my earlier essays on the subject, and I think it’s important enough to quote here again, just for those who might not have time to check the links to the past essays:
Two key figures in the conviction of the Lockerbie bomber were secretly given rewards of up to $3m (£1.9m) in a deal discussed by Scottish detectives and the US government, according to legal papers released today.
The claims about the payments were revealed in a dossier of evidence that was intended to be used in an appeal by Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, the Libyan convicted of murdering 270 people in the bombing of Pan Am flight 103 in 1988.
Megrahi abandoned his appeal last month after the Libyan and Scottish governments struck a deal to free him on compassionate grounds because he is terminally ill with prostate cancer. Now in hospital in Tripoli, Megrahi said he wanted the public to see the evidence which he claims would have cleared him.
“I continue to protest my innocence – how could I fail to do so?,” he said. “I have no desire to add to the upset of many people I know are profoundly affected by what happened in Lockerbie. My intention is only for the truth to be made known.”
The documents published online by Megrahi’s lawyers today show that the US Department of Justice (DoJ) was asked to pay $2m to Tony Gauci, the Maltese shopkeeper who gave crucial evidence at the trial suggesting that Megrahi had bought clothes later used in the suitcase that allegedly held the Lockerbie bomb.
The DoJ was also asked to pay a further $1m to his brother, Paul Gauci, who did not give evidence but played a major role in identifying the clothing and in “maintaining the resolve of his brother”. The DoJ said their rewards could be increased and that the brothers were also eligible for the US witness protection programme, according to the documents.
The previously secret payments were uncovered by the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission (SCCRC), which returned Megrahi’s conviction to the court of appeal in 2007 as a suspected miscarriage of justice. Many references were in private diaries kept by the detectives involved, Megrahi’s lawyers said, but not their official notebooks.
Thanks for all who recommended etc. I think this is a really important story, because it clearly demonstrates how what we’ve been fed as a “clear” act of terrorism might just be something else entirely. It’s what goes on with the men behind the curtains that counts.