Friday, August 21, 2009

Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi freed by Scottish Government

So, they let Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi go.

On the one hand you have the fact that had he been any other prisoner then he would almost certainly have been released, given that he has terminal cancer. On the other hand, he killed 270 people in a hideous, cynical mass-murder the like of which the world has rarely seen. Well, I understand about compassion, but surely this must also apply to the families of the bereaved as well as the murderer and I simply cannot see the basis on which the decision to release was made. Releasing this man will have caused deep pain to hundreds of people, the more so because of the predictable street party of his arrival. It is all very well for Alex Salmond to now say that public celebrations in Libya are 'inappropriate', but what did he expect? His words just make him seem foolish and out of his depth at his administration's first real foray into international relations. Was the welfare of one murderer worth the hurt to so many people and the damage done to Scotland's reputation in the US and elsewhere? It takes a great degree of moral certainty on someone's part to think that might be the case. One wonders who is looking in the mirror today and burnishing their ego on being on such a higher moral plane than most of the rest of us, because that is what I suspect is going on. Certainly no rational process would have led to the release of someone like al-Megrahi. In fact a rational process would probably have led to a last cigarette and a blindfold instead of a prison cell.

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