Monday, 4 April 2011

Lockerbie lawyer meets Libyan rebels over 'evidence' of Gaddafi involvement

[This is the headline over a report published this afternoon on The Guardian website. It reads in part:]

A British lawyer representing victims of the Lockerbie bombing is meeting Libya's revolutionary leaders in pursuit of evidence a senior rebel claims to have that Muammar Gaddafi ordered the attack.

Jason McCue, head of the Libya Victims Initiative, is also seeking "an apology from the Libyan people" for the blowing up of the Pan Am flight in 1988 and the country's supply of explosives used in IRA attacks.

McCue said he had been invited to Benghazi by the chairman of its interim governing council, Mustafa Abdul Jalil, who served as Gaddafi's justice minister. Jalil has said publicly that he has evidence of the Libyan leader's involvement in the Lockerbie bombing but has not elaborated further.

McCue is also seeking redress for 150 British families who were victims of IRA attacks.

"There are evidential issues, particularly on Lockerbie. Jalil has made indications that he has evidence linking Gaddafi to it. We've fought for years and never had that information. It's about getting that evidence [and] getting apologies which are worth their weight in gold to the victims," he said.

McCue is ruling out new litigation for now, saying that would be the wrong time to sue individuals such as Moussa Koussa, Gadaffi's foreign minister who has defected to Britain and who allegedly established Libya's relationship with the IRA. (...)

McCue said that he believed an apology to victims of terrorist attacks sponsored by Libya would help establish the revolutionary leadership as bona fide supporters of human rights.

"The IRA victims have never had an apology off the Gaddafi regime ... Likewise the Lockerbie families have never had an unequivocal apology. It's always been tongue-tied," he said.

"The Libyan people, it is so important for them to express their sorrow for what that regime did ... and it's important for the international victims to hear that. I think that is absolutely essential."

Asked if that should mean that the British people should apologise to Libyans for helping to prop up Gaddafi following the rapprochement with the west in recent years, including the training of his military, McCue said: "I know that the victims I'm representing spoke out very loudly against that rapprochement."

[I was, of course, aware of Mr McCue in the context of the campaign for compensation for victims of IRA attacks involving Libyan-supplied semtex. I was not aware that he represented any relatives of those killed at Lockerbie.]


  1. I do hope that it's not akin to the old saying about flies around ..... (sorry the Altzheimer just kicked in)

  2. Interesting the demands for apologies from Libya for providing explosives to the IRA. Which country provided a lot of the funds to buy the explosives? All those Irish-Americans living on sentimental clap-trap for the old country collecting tens of thousands of dollars in the US and sending it "home" faithfully for how many years to buy guns and semtex.

  3. I got shouted at by someone for making that point, on the grounds that Libya actually gave the Semtex and armaments to the IRA more or less on the basis of "the enemy of my enemy is my friend".

    I don't actually know the details. We know NORAID got a shedload of money from Americans to support the IRA. If they were getting the munitions for free, where did the money go I ask.

  4. I'm not up on the details myself Rolfe, to be honest, but I do know that in very few places do you get nothing for nothing. Many in the US contributed massively towards the IRA. That is a fact.

    I think its interesting tho the way this is all going, propaganda wise, since Koussa arrived. Just before it a poll was announced that just under half of people here weren't happy with what we were getting caught up in in Libya. Next thing its all about Libya and Lockerbie and Koussa's arrival and more arrests and Libya's part in IRA atrocities. Its like a PR exercise in getting backing for the war - because that's what it is - in Libya.

  5. I don't thin the Libyan interim government will get much support for this. The tribes will erupt with finger pointing and accusations just the same.

  6. Another greedy Brit looking for that easy money! Shouldn't he be going to Tripoli?

    I don't think Libyans should pay a single penny to the victims of IRA attacks. What exactly is the logic, that "Libya" supplied/sold some bomb materials? OK,... so countries that sell/provide arms are responsible for their end uses? That's interesting in its own right, but where does the regressive culpability end? Gaddafi didn't make any of his semtex, and he actually got a lot of it from the US, smuggled by an "ex-CIA agent" called Edwin Wilson. No one said when Wislon acquired his "ex-" prefix, whether it happened before or after he went to do business with Gaddafi.

    The Libyan NTC should treat no-clue McCue to a nice couscous with wild Green-Mountain artichoke (ga'mool), a guided tour of Tobrug, and the addresses of CIA headquarters.

  7. Surely, the wider problem will boil down to the fact that given the US and UK are by far and away the world's most prolific explosive, arms and weapons suppliers with absolutely no regard considered for the purchasers known transgressions or intent for these weapons.

    And thus where do these claims of responsibility for association in atrocities against civilians, directly or indirectly, and the originator of the instruments used to commit them, begin and end?

    Will the US start paying compensation to the Palestinian victims and population for the white phosphorus supplied to Israel and used against them in 2009? Bahrain, Egypt and Saudia Arabia have provided rich pickings for UK arms exporters in those states efforts to subjugate and butcher their civilian population. Or blow me over, would this simply be once again, an exercise in the absurd moral high ground occupied by the military and economic powers of the West and providing us with the pathetic isolated anecdotal cases that suits their agenda? Okay, stop laughing at the back I know I said 'economic powers'!

    It should always be remembered that tyrants, despots and terror organisations come in many guises to many different people.

    As an aside I note that a Mr Ali A.Tarhouni, senior lecturer in the Foster School of Business at the University of Washington, has been named finance minister by the Libyan opposition national council.

    That's nice. I'm sure he can advise them how Blackwater, Goldman Sachs etc can help them rebuild. Nice that the US government has also been providing, via the US taxpayer, 0% loans to the tune of billions and exempting Libyan owned banks (CBL and ABC). Libyan owned banks based in New York and operating out of Bahrain that is.

  8. Suliman, you don`t happen to know if Edwin Wilson supplied Gaddafi with timers to go with the semtex, do you?

  9. Grendal: I don't really recall any thing about timers in connection with Wilson. And I should probably correct myself and say it was C4 not semtex, but they're similar I think.

    By the way, Wislon was set up in the end, and got caught with a fake passport at a US airport while on transit to south America. There was also another ex-guy named Frank Terpel (spelling?) from that era. I don't remember what happened to him, but through those two Gaddafi got lots of C4.

    Mr. EBOLA might know those guys personally, although at the time he may have been only helping Gaddafi with his radio ship, jamming foreign broadcasts, etc.

  10. I wonder if it's even possible to figure out what sort of rash spook over-reach or miscalculation lies behind the Lockerbie crash? I've got vague outline ideas, but it's all speculative.

    I don't think all this three-ring circus was just because they really couldn't pin it on anyone else, or they were shit-scared of Heathrow being landed with the blame for letting the bomb on board. I think there was spook activity, probably at Frankfurt, in relation to the PFLP-GC, and somebody made a very bad mistake, and what they were trying to prevent came right out and happened. And that maybe the spooks actually helped it happen, unwittingly. Hence some very very hasty covering of tracks.

    But if this is anywhere close to right, they'll torture Moussa Koussa to confess rather than let it come out.