Thursday, 20 September 2012

Lockerbie legislation to be introduced into US Congress

[What follows is the text of a report published today on the website of The Daily Orange, the newspaper of Syracuse University, New York:]

Congresswoman Ann Marie Buerkle [Republican, New York] has announced she will introduce two pieces of legislation regarding the Pan Am Flight 103 bombing.

The legislation will call for further investigation into the bombing and just compensation for the families of the victims, according to a Sept 19 press release.

The 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, killed 270 people, including 35 Syracuse University students returning from study abroad programs in London and Florence, Italy.

Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, the only individual ever convicted in the bombings, died in Tripoli in May. He served eight years in prison, but was released in August 2009 after he was diagnosed with terminal prostate cancer. Doctors gave him only three months to live, but the former Libyan intelligence officer lived for nearly three years after his release.

Moammar al Gadhafi, the former Libyan dictator who many suspect orchestrated the attack, was killed last October.

With Libya in the news for crimes against Americans, now is a good time to remember those who suffered under the Gadhafi regime, as well as the victims of the bombings, Buerkle said in the press release.

“Sadly, all these years later, the families of American victims are still awaiting justice. Until now, there has yet to be a complete investigation of those implicated in the crimes,” she said. “The families of the victims continue to hope for proper compensation for the crimes they have endured, as only some have received compensation.”

Buerkle has been working with the organization Families of Pan Am 103/Lockerbie and its president, Paul Hudson, on the legislation for several months.

Said Buerkle: “It is very little to ask that those who were responsible for the attack be brought to justice and that the families of the victims receive fair compensation.”


  1. Wow. How much money do these people want?

    And when will journalists learn to count? Megrahi served ten years, four months and a couple of weeks in prison. It's not rocket science.

    "It is very little to ask that those who were responsible for the attack be brought to justice...."

    Seems to me that's quite a big thing to ask in general terms, about any crime. In this case, since the perpetrators have been given a 24-year head start, it could be an impossible task.

    Try starting again from the very beginning and figuring out where the original investigation went wrong (in December 1988), and see how you get on....

  2. The hook is to get people to agree to further investigation IN ORDER to receive proper compensation.I'm not familiar with this lady so I really don't know what her angle. I do know that some conservative groups are calling for a Lockerbie re investigation after the Libya disinformation campaign was exposed last year.

  3. Some bipartisan groups are calling for a re investigation after the Libyan disinformation campaign was exposed by the New York Times last year. Disinfoin 2012= disinfo in 1985.

  4. Sandra, I'm not following you. I don't think I'm following this report either.

    Why is legislation required to institute an investigation? It's not usual to pass legislation before investigating a crime, or reopening a cold case. Though this isn't a cold case and it's (theoretically at least) actively being investigated by the Scottish police anyway. There was a court hearing about some (alleged) evidence in Malta just last week.

    Who needs to agree to an investigation? In particular, who needs to agree who can be persuaded to agree by dangling an offer of "proper compensation" in front of them? Don't law enforcement agencies decide what to investigate and then just get on with it?

    Who is envisaged as paying this compensation, anyway?

    And what more compensation do people need, when they've already had millions? There's a 13-year-old boy out there with £18 million in a trust fund, because his grandparents and aunt were killed years before he was born. The only people who haven't had a lot of money are the people who turned it down, for whatever reason.

    I have to say it would be quite refreshing if a new investigation actually looked at the evidential basis for believing the bomb was introduced at Malta, seriously and openmindedly. I'm not holding my breath though.

    This is just confusing me.