[This is the headline over an article by G A Ponsonby published today on the Newsnet Scotland website. It reads in part:]
These last few days the conflict in Libya has dominated the airwaves. The awful dictator Muammar Gadaffi has been removed from power and all that remains of his crumbling regime are pockets of resistance as a few loyal soldiers fight to the finish.
The demise of the man who was second only to the late Saddam Hussein for the title of most irritating thorn in America’s side has been swift. A million dollar bounty now hangs over his head and only the most loyal of followers will resist the temptation to take the cash and make a run for it.
But as with all silver linings there hangs a cloud of despair. No, not just the anarchy that will surely envelope the streets of Tripoli and other cities and towns in Libya as old tribal scores are settled, but the sad ‘stalking’ of a dying and almost certainly innocent man by what passes for a media in Scotland.
Turn on a radio, switch on a TV or open a newspaper over the last few days and you will almost certainly be confronted with a headline proclaiming the hunt for a famous Libyan.
This is Scotland though, and whilst the world watches and listens for news of Gadaffi, we Scots are pelted with the same festering rhetorical dung that has so blemished the memory of the poor souls who perished in the bombing of Pan Am 103 - our journalists and reporters have turned into 'Megrahi stalkers'.
Let’s put one thing on the record here. This isn’t an attempt at changing the minds of those honest people who genuinely disagreed with the decision to release Abdelbaset al-Megrahi on compassionate grounds. There are very good reasons for many people to disagree with the decision, just as there are very good reasons for people to endorse Kenny MacAskill’s decision.
What this article is about is exposing the phoney journalism that pervades Scotland’s dying media outlets and has left such a stain on the memory of the victims of Lockerbie. When Megrahi was released in 2009 there were repeated claims from the opposition politicians that their ‘outrage’ was in part due to the suffering that the release would undoubtedly have on relatives of the victims.
However, instead of allowing the issue to draw to a natural close, many of these rapscallions have persisted in dredging the tragedy up again and again. What’s worse, rather than focus on the mounting evidence that the man, used by Gadaffi as a patsy in order to end sanctions on Libya, was almost certainly falsely convicted, they have instead sought to traduce the reputation of Dr Andrew Fraser in order to make political capital out of the tragedy.
There are far too many examples of these attacks to mention. Literally scores of BBC Scotland news items and bulletins since the weekend have contained attacks on the compassionate release and continued survival of Megrahi. When one BBC Scotland reporter calls the compassionate release of Al-Megrahi “The Lockerbie conspiracy” you know that things are deteriorating again at Pacific Quay. (...)
Nick Clegg, David Cameron, William Hague, George Foulkes, Gordon Banks, Iain Gray, Dr Richard Simpson and many more – an alliance of Lib Dem, Tory and Labour all joining right wing poorly informed US politicians.
Megrahi has survived two years against the odds. Imprisoned after being used as a convenient patsy by the Libyan and US/UK administrations keen to end sanctions and trade oil, he is nearing death.
If the reported findings of the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission are to be believed he is also almost certainly innocent of the crime for which he was convicted. He now lies terminally ill somewhere in a country wracked by civil war and with the knowledge that those responsible for providing the ‘evidence’ on which his conviction relied are keen to find him.
Jim Swire, who lost his daughter Flora in the Lockerbie bombing, has said he now fears for Megrahi’s safety and believes the Libyan may be assassinated or snatched by the US. Mr Swire believes, as many do, that Megrahi is innocent.
The innocent are being hounded by people who are now dancing in delirium on the graves of the dead, oil and blood dripping from their hands.
“They’ve lost the Lockerbie bomber” announced Jackie Bird on last night’s late BBC Scotland news bulletin.
If only we had Jackie, if only we had … the Lockerbie bomber was lost when the US decided to switch the attention of their initial investigation from Syrian backed terrorists to oil rich Libya.
[Another compelling article on the subject by Judith Jaafar is to be found in today's edition of the Scottish Review. It is headed "If he is killed or jailed, will the truth about Lockerbie ever come out?" A contribution by Bob Low on the same page is also well worth reading.]