September 29, 2009
From the Gulf of Sidra to Lockerbie

From the Associated Press:

WASHINGTON – The Senate has unanimously condemned the release of the Libyan terrorist convicted in Pan Am bombing over Lockerbie and called upon Libya to apologize for celebrating his return…

It is by no means settled that Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi is really the man who blew up Flight 103.

For the moment, though, assume that he did. Our outrage over the release of a mass murderer, even a dying one, is understandable. But was his evil deed incomprehensible, or did it follow with a certain awful logic from a chain of violent, ultimately pointless acts — many of them committed by our own leaders with our full knowledge and approval?

On August 19, 1981, two American jets entered the Gulf of Sidra, whose waters are claimed by Libya. Two Libyan jets approached, and were shot down. The American planes were untouched.

On March 24, 1986, American planes again probed the disputed area. Two missiles were fired at them from the land. Four Libyan patrol boats were fired upon in the skirmish that followed. At least one of them was sunk. No Americans were killed and no damage was done.

On April 5, 1986, Libyan agents bombed a Berlin disco frequented by American servicemen. Two of them were killed, along with a Turkish woman.

On April 15, 1986, Reagan sent bombers against what the State Department later described as “targets near Tripoli and Benghazi.” By what could hardly have been an incredible coincidence, one of the sixty-some victims turned out to be Qaddafi’s 15-month-old adopted daughter, Hanna. Earlier in his presidency Reagan had signed an executive order saying, “No person employed by or acting on behalf of the United States government shall engage in, or conspire to engage in, assassination.”

On July 3, 1988, the U.S.S. Vincennes shot down Iran Air flight 655, flying at 12,000 feet on its regularly scheduled flight path. All 270 aboard, 53 of them children, died. The ship’s commander, Will C. Rogers III, was later given the Legion of Merit for “exceptionally meritorious conduct during the period of his command.” President George H.W. Bush answered critics by saying, “I will never apologize for the United States of America! I don’t care what the facts are.”

On December 21, 1988, Pan Am flight 103 was blown up over Lockerbie, Scotland, killing 270.

There are no heroes in this cascade of events, only victims and villains. But it can’t hurt to remember Bush’s brainless words as we rage at Qaddafi for his welcome of the Lockerbie bomber, come home to take his own turn at dying.

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Posted by Jerome Doolittle at September 29, 2009 03:42 PM
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“I will never apologize for the United States of America! I don’t care what the facts are.”

I was in a doctor's office yesterday in which the TV was playing C-Span of all things. My wife thanked the receptionist for not having "trash TV" on (I've convinced her to cancel our Comcast TV subscription and we don't watch TV at all now because if we want C-Span, we can get it on the net).

The receptionist replied "that's all that's allowed to be played here". I then sat down and waited while my wife saw the doctor and picked up a copy of the Atlantic magazine, which I forgo for my Harper's subscription and there in print was an open letter from Andrew Sullivan asking George the Junior (often referred to as the Smirking Chimp) to not only apologize for, but accept responsibility for the hideous torture that occurred and was perpetrated by Americans Government officials or contracts acting under his authority because of his authorization. Of course, I'm sure Andrew is wasting his time and 6 or 8 pages of the article were a waste of paper.

That asshole will never in a million years apologize for undoing a reputation that millions have worked so hard to create for this country (not matter how many flaws there had previously been in that reputation).

Not a chance. Never in a million years. The little piss ant isn't capable of it.

Read it and continue to weep for your country:

http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200910/bush-torture

Posted by: Buck on September 30, 2009 5:44 AM

Before we get our knickers in a twist about a Libyan bomber, who started this?
From Wikipedia:
Cubana Flight 455 was a Cubana flight from Barbados to Jamaica that was brought down by a terrorist attack on October 6, 1976. All 73 people on board the Douglas DC-8 aircraft were killed in what was then the most deadly terrorist airline attack in the Western hemisphere. Two time bombs were used, variously described as dynamite or C-4. Evidence implicated several CIA-linked anti-Castro Cuban exiles and members of the Venezuelan secret police DISIP. Political complications quickly arose when Cuba accused the US government of being an accomplice to the attack. CIA documents released in 2005 indicate that the agency "had concrete advance intelligence, as early as June 1976, on plans by Cuban exile terrorist groups to bomb a Cubana airliner." Former CIA operative Posada Carriles denies involvement but provides many details of the incident in his book "Caminos del Guerrero" (Way of the Warrior),[1][2]

Four men were arrested in connection with the bombing and a trial was held in Venezuela: Freddy Lugo and Hernan Ricardo Lozano were sentenced to 20-year prison terms; Orlando Bosch was acquitted because of technical defects in the prosecution evidence, and now lives in Miami, Florida; and Luis Posada Carriles was held for eight years while awaiting a final sentence, but eventually fled. He later entered the United States, where he was held on charges of entering the country illegally but was released on April 19, 2007.

Posted by: less is better on September 30, 2009 2:14 PM
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