I am one of the many supporters of the present Scottish Government who is suffering what one might describe, in a cliched manner, as a dark night of the soul. Why is it not coming clean about the lies of previous administrations regarding the guilt of Megrahi?
Why is it not, even in the most cynical view of such things, making political traction out of the fact that this happened before it came to power and that it is now in a position to show the world what a just, decent and honest nascent nation Scotland is, by washing dirty, filthy linen in public and pointing fingers at conspirators and wrongdoers? Why indeed has it seemingly made it even more legislatively difficult for potential miscarriages of justice to be opened up to public inquiry, away from the judiciary who may indeed have perpetrated such miscarriages?
I have thought long and hard about these questions, speculating wildly about this and that and the other. I do not believe that the SNP government is intrinsically weak and corrupt, nor ill-motivated. I firmly believe that it knows the whole truth about the Lockerbie affair, as does the Westminster government, the American government and just about every Tom, Dick and Harry on the planet – everybody knows that something is seriously amiss (except Johann Lamont) [Scottish Parliament Labour Party leader].
I think that by releasing Megrahi compassionately the Scottish Government tried to do the right thing, morally, whilst failing to address the legal and justiciary issues. So what's stopping it going the whole hog and revealing the the extent of the fitting-up of an innocent man, and the cover-up that has thus ensued? What is tying its hands? What subtle, or even overt pressure is being applied? By whom? For what reason? For surely there are things going on here that we do not understand, at least not in public circles. (...)
My speculations are as useful or as useless as anyone else's, but I must admit my old buddy Robert Fisk of Beirut and Independent fame put into words the other day in the paper exactly what my thoughts are on this matter. Oh, how enraged the Americans were when we released Megrahi on compassionate grounds. Hillary Clinton went ape-shit, at least publicly, and half the American government and nation wanted to see Scotland disappear off the face of the earth, those of them that had any knowledge of the Lockerbie bombing in the first place. What weak fools the Scots were, and a whole bunch of Yankees were never going to set foot in Scotland again. 'Bovvered', I had to ask?
But therein lies the possible answer to this ethical/judicial/political conundrum. How much does a fledgling-yet-ancient nation on the periphery of Europe, breaking away from the colonial master and possibly now flying free without the safety net of a strong European Union, need the goodwill of the USA (and all the Scottish expats and ancestors therein), still the most powerful political and economic entity in the world? Hmm. As Fisk concluded, no matter how self-righteously enraged the Yanks were at the release of Megrahi, can you imagine how incandescent they would be if Scotland dared to reveal the truth about the Lockerbie bombing?