Man who blew up Pan AM flight 103 Released

Discussion in 'OFF-Topic / Misc.' started by B-17engineer, Aug 21, 2009.

  1. B-17engineer

    B-17engineer Active Member

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    TRIPOLI, Libya – The only man convicted in the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 returned home to Libya to die after he was released from a Scottish prison Thursday, a decision that outraged some relatives of the 270 people killed when the jetliner blew up over Lockerbie, Scotland, more than two decades ago.

    President Barack Obama said the Scottish decision to free terminally ill Abdel Baset al-Megrahi on compassionate grounds was a mistake and said he should be under house arrest. Obama warned Libya not to give him a hero’s welcome.

    Despite the warning, at the military airport in Tripoli where al-Megrahi’s plane touched down thousands of youths were on hand to warmly greet him. He left the plane wearing a dark suit and a tie and accompanied by Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi’s son, Saif al-Islam Gadhafi. They immediately sped off in a convoy of all-white vehicles.

    At home, al-Megrahi is seen as an innocent scapegoat the West used to turn this African nation into a pariah, and his return is a cause for celebration. There was a festive atmosphere with some wearing T-shirts with al-Megrahi’s picture and waving Libyan and miniature blue-and-white Scottish flags. Libyan songs blared in the background.

    Abdelbaset Ali Mohmet al-Megrahi, the only person convicted for downing a US passenger jet that killed 270 people over Lockerbie, prepares to board an aircraft at Glasgow airport in Scotland. The terminally ill Libyan convicted over the 1988 Lockerbie bombing arrived home from Scotland on Thursday after being freed on compassionate grounds despite US anger over the decision.

    Abdelbaset Ali Mohmet al-Megrahi, the only person convicted for downing a US passenger jet that killed 270 people over Lockerbie, prepares to board an aircraft at Glasgow airport in Scotland. The terminally ill Libyan convicted over the 1988 Lockerbie bombing arrived home from Scotland on Thursday after being freed on compassionate grounds despite US anger over the decision.
    “I think it’s appalling, disgusting and so sickening I can hardly find words to describe it,” said Susan Cohen, of Cape May Court House, N.J., whose 20-year-old daughter, Theodora, died in the attack. “This isn’t about compassionate release. This is part of give-Gadhafi-what-he-wants-so-we-can-have-the-oil.”

    But many in Libya view his homecoming as a moral victory for the African country and an end to a long-standing humiliation at the hands of the West. They say Libya was forced to surrender al-Megrahi to end years of crippling sanctions.

    Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi lobbied hard for the return of al-Megrahi, an issue which took on an added sense of urgency when al-Megrahi was diagnosed with prostate cancer last year. He was recently given only months to live.

    Policemen look at the wreckage of the 747 Pan Am airliner that exploded and crashed over Lockerbie in 1988. The terminally-ill Libyan convicted for the 1988 Lockerbie bombing headed home from Scotland Thursday after being freed on compassionate grounds despite US anger over the gesture.

    Policemen look at the wreckage of the 747 Pan Am airliner that exploded and crashed over Lockerbie in 1988. The terminally-ill Libyan convicted for the 1988 Lockerbie bombing headed home from Scotland Thursday after being freed on compassionate grounds despite US anger over the gesture.
    The 57-year-old former Libyan intelligence officer served only eight years of his life sentence.

    Al-Megrahi was convicted in 2001 of taking part in the bombing on Dec. 21, 1988, and sentenced to life in prison. The airliner exploded over Scotland and all 259 people aboard and 11 on the ground died when it crashed into the town of Lockerbie.

    He was sentenced to serve a minimum of 27 years in a Scottish prison for Britain’s deadliest terrorist attack. But a 2007 review of his case found grounds for an appeal of his conviction, and many in Britain believe he is innocent.

    Scottish Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill, who announced the release, said although al-Megrahi had not shown compassion to his victims — many of whom were American college students flying home to New York for Christmas — MacAskill was motivated by Scottish values to show mercy.

    The United States "deeply regrets" the decision by the Scottish government to release dying Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset Ali Mohmet al-Megrahi, seen here in 1992, the White House said Thursday.“Some hurts can never heal, some scars can never fade,” MacAskill said. “Those who have been bereaved cannot be expected to forget, let alone forgive … However, Mr. al-Megrahi now faces a sentence imposed by a higher power.”

    He said he stood by al-Megrahi’s conviction and the sentence for “the worst terrorist atrocity ever committed on U.K. soil.”

    He added that he had ruled out sending the bomber back to Libya under a prisoner-transfer agreement, saying the U.S. victims had been given assurances that al-Megrahi would serve out his sentence in Scotland. But he said that as a prisoner given less than three months to live by doctors, al-Megrahi was eligible for compassionate release.

    But U.S. family members of Lockerbie victims expressed outrage.

    “I don’t understand how the Scots can show compassion. It’s an utter insult and utterly disgusting,” said Kara Weipz, of Mount Laurel, N.J. Her 20-year-old brother Richard Monetti was on board the doomed flight. “It’s horrible. I don’t show compassion for someone who showed no remorse.”

    The remains of Pan Am flight 103 are still in Roger Windley's scrapyard in rural Lincolnshire Read more: 19 years on and Lockerbie plane debris is rotting away in a scrapyard | Mail Online

    The remains of Pan Am flight 103 are still in Roger Windley's scrapyard in rural Lincolnshire Read more: 19 years on and Lockerbie plane debris is rotting away in a scrapyard | Mail Online
    As his white van rolled down street outside Greenock Prison on his way to the airport in Glasgow, Scotland, some men on the roadside made obscene gestures. Al-Megrahi later appeared on the airport tarmac dressed in a white tracksuit, black shirt and white baseball cap. He covered his mouth with a white scarf as he slowly climbed the stairs up to an Airbus plane aided by a cane.

    In a statement following his release, al-Megrahi stood by his insistence that he was wrongfully convicted.

    “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,” he said.

    He also said he believed the truth behind the Lockerbie bombing may now never be known.

    “I had most to gain and nothing to lose about the whole truth coming out — until my diagnosis of cancer,” he said, referring to an appeal against his conviction that he dropped in order to be freed. “To those victims’ relatives who can bear to hear me say this, they continue to have my sincere sympathy for the unimaginable loss that they have suffered.”

    Al-Megrahi’s conviction was largely based on the testimony of a shopkeeper who identified him as having bought a man’s shirt in his store in Malta. Scraps of the garment were later found wrapped around a timing device discovered in the wreckage of the airliner. Critics of al-Megrahi’s conviction question the reliability of the store owner’s evidence.

    A letter published Thursday showed that Libya had invoked human rights concerns in appealing to Scotland for al-Megrahi’s release.

    Crash investigators inspect the nose section of the crashed Pan Am flight 103 near Lockerbie, Scotland, on December 23, 1988.

    Crash investigators inspect the nose section of the crashed Pan Am flight 103 near Lockerbie, Scotland, on December 23, 1988.
    Abdulati Alobidi, Libya’s Secretary of European Affairs, said under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights — a U.N. treaty — all those deprived of liberty must be “treated with humanity and respect for the inherent dignity of the human person.”

    Gadhafi engineered a rapprochement with his former critics following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. He renounced terrorism, dismantled Libya’s secret nuclear program, accepted his government’s responsibility for the Lockerbie bombing and paid compensation to the victims’ families.

    Western energy companies — including Britain’s BP PLC — have moved into Libya in an effort to tap the country’s vast oil and gas wealth.

    Al-Megrahi was a well-known figure in the Scottish community near his prison, receiving regular treatment at the hospital and visited often by his wife and children, who lived in Scotland for several years.

    Briton Jim Swire, whose daughter Flora died on Flight 103, welcomed the Libyan’s release, saying many questions remained about what led to the bomb that exploded in the cargo hold.

    “I think he should be able to go straight home to his family and spend his last days there,” Swire told the BBC. “I don’t believe for a moment this man was involved in the way he was found to be involved.”

    Among the Lockerbie victims was John Mulroy, the AP’s director of international communication, who died along with five members of his family.

    ____

    Associated Press Writers Geoff Mulvihill in Mount Laurel, N.J., Shawn Marsh in Trenton, N.J., Meera Selva in London, Matthew Lee in Washington, Jessica M. Pasko in Albany, N.Y., and Jim Hannah in Dayton, Ohio, contributed to this report.

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    Pan Am Flight 103 terrorist given compassion releas - prostate cancer | Street Gangs Resource Center - Los Angeles and California | The Gang Experts | Crips | Bloods | Mara Salvatrucha | 18th Street






    They said they wanted him to be with his family when he died, do you think the people on the plane he blew up got to be with there families when they died?
     
  2. RabidAlien

    RabidAlien Active Member

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    Guess they didn't throw his cell's key far enough away.
     
  3. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    He should have died in jail.
     
  4. Erich

    Erich the old Sage
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    I like the 30,000 foot leap out the jet door over the ocean personally, heck they just should of slit his ugly throat and thrown him in a vat of lye........dang I sound medieval

    E ~
     
  5. Bucksnort101

    Bucksnort101 Well-Known Member

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    I thought the Scottish Gov't agreed long ago to never release this criminal/murderer? Now he goes home to a heroes welcome and inspires hundreds, if not thousands more terrorists before his death.
     
  6. Colin1

    Colin1 Active Member

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  7. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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    He should be shown the same "humanity" he showed his victims.
     
  8. Bucksnort101

    Bucksnort101 Well-Known Member

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    Or inhumanity in his case. I guess dying of Prostate Cancer is pretty painful so there may be some justice.
     
  9. Negative Creep

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    Can only hope it's a long slow death and there certainly won't be 82 virgins waiting for him...........
     
  10. ToughOmbre

    ToughOmbre Active Member

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    Wish I had a precision-guided munition at my disposal the minute this piece of sh*t landed in Libya!

    Could have gotten hundreds of bad guys with one shot! :angry4:

    TO
     

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  11. Bucksnort101

    Bucksnort101 Well-Known Member

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    I hope there are 82 virgins waiting for him, 82 well endowed MALE virgins that is!!!
     
  12. Ivan1GFP

    Ivan1GFP Member

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    Hello Folks,

    If he were guilty, then dying in prison sounds like a pretty reasonably outcome. What no one seems to note here is that he was very likely to be released on appeal for a conviction on VERY circumstantial evidence. One of the witnesses against him even ADMITTED to having lied in court. His appeal was very likely to be successful in my opinion, so an early release doesn't seem too unreasonable here.

    Read the background information for his appeal and see if you STILL believe the man should have been originally convicted. I am not saying that he WASN'T guilty, I am just saying that his conviction was wrong based on what we know today.

    - Ivan.
     
  13. 109ROAMING

    109ROAMING Active Member

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    Exactly

    WTF
     
  14. Vassili Zaitzev

    Vassili Zaitzev Well-Known Member

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    Damn, seeing him getting a hero's welcome really sickens me. Hope his prostate is long and painful.
     
  15. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Or nice load of napalm...
     
  16. Njaco

    Njaco The Pop-Tart Whisperer
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    My question is are we now at war with Scotland because they aided and abeited a terrorist? :)
     
  17. RabidAlien

    RabidAlien Active Member

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    Lucky is a terrorist?
     
  18. trackend

    trackend Active Member

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    A retrial was a possibility as the evidence was a bit thin so there may have been a miscarriage of justice but you dont release him before this process has been carried out if he died in jail then so be it he had been convicted so until proven other wise he should have remained in prison.
     
  19. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Hmmm...

    If we invade Scotland, are we there for the oil or the Haggis?
     
  20. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    I would use the premise that we are invading for the Golf, and that we must take over The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews and preserve it! :lol:
     
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