Saturday, February 27, 2010

Lockerbie bomber may beat cancer, say family

By Sam Greenhill and Peter Allen
Last updated at 1:53 AM on 27th February 2010

Freed from his life sentence, the Lockerbie bomber was sent home by the Scots on compassionate grounds because he had 'just three months' to live.

But six months later, Abdelbaset Ali Mohamed al-Megrahi is still living - and doing it in the lap of luxury.

Yesterday, his elderly father even held out the prospect of him beating the prostate cancer that doctors said would kill him by last Christmas.

Home comforts: Al-Megrahi with his family at their villa last year after he was freed on compassionate grounds

Mr Ali al-Megrahi believes that good genes, 'positive thinking' and alternative medicines could explain his son's remarkable survival.

Megrahi, 57, no longer receives hospital treatment after ending a course of chemotherapy.

Last night, the British cancer specialist who gave the three-month prognosis was forced to defend his prediction.

He insisted that Megrahi remained gravely ill and was not expected to live much longer.

He said the patient's survival may be due to his excitement over his reunion with family.

But Tory MP Daniel Kawczynski, chairman of the Commons all-party Libya group, yesterday tabled a Parliamentary question demanding Megrahi's medical records be published in full.

He said: 'He's still alive and we were told he had no more than three months to live. The Scottish Executive have a lot to answer for.'

Earlier this month it emerged that Libya was on the brink of agreeing £5billion in investment in Britain.

Critics believe Downing Street colluded with the Scots to pave the way by having Megrahi freed.

The news of Megrahi's survival has provoked consternation among those relatives of victims of the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 who suspect he was never as sick as he claimed to be.

They believe it was an unforgivable mistake for the Scottish Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill to release him last August.

The Libyan - who days earlier had dropped an appeal against his conviction for the 270 deaths caused when Flight 103 exploded over Lockerbie - flew home to a hero's welcome.

It later emerged he had a £2million fortune stashed in a Swiss bank account.

His father, who is in his early 80s and keeps a vigil at his son's side in the family's plush villa in the capital Tripoli, still believes a 'miracle' could happen.

He said: 'A close relative was diagnosed with a similar disease and he was treated and recovered completely. We hope that Abdelbaset recovers his health as well.

'I think that the sick are not just cured by medicine, but also by having a high morale and a sense of freedom, and these were not available to Abdelbaset in prison.'

Megrahi receives 24-hour nursing care and, though often heavily sedated, receives well-wishers.

The relaxed, peaceful atmosphere has enabled him to more than double his original survival prognosis, and he says he is 'inspired and feeling very positive' thanks to the support of family and friends.

The 1988 bombing of Flight 103 over Lockerbie killed 270 people

Mr Megrahi said his son was working on his autobiography, and was determined to prove that he had nothing to do with the Lockerbie bombing.

The Tripoli Medical Center, where Megrahi was treated following his initial release, said it would be 'quite normal' for him to use 'alternative medicine and positive thinking' to prolong his life, and that a good family medical history would also act in his favour.

East Renfrewshire council, which is in weekly contact with Megrahi under the terms of his licence, speculated he could even 'last a year or two years'. A spokesman said: 'Nobody knows. It was never that he was supposed to be dead by now, it was never a certainty, it was just the opinion of the experts.'

Megrahi's life expectancy was crucial because under Scottish rules, prisoners can be freed on compassionate grounds if they are considered to have fewer than three months to live.

Last July, the Libyan government paid for Megrahi to be examined by three cancer specialists, among them British expert Professor Karol Sikora. It was their prognosis that won his freedom.

Professor Sikora told the Mail: 'I am very surprised that he is still alive. He is not receiving any active treatment. The latest information I have from Tripoli is that he is not a well man, and I suspect he will be dead within a month or so.'

Professor Sikora said he suspected Megrahi was hanging on because he had received a ' psychological' boost from being reunited with his family and countrymen.

Indeed the former Libyan secret service agent and his wife and five adult children are treated like royalty in Libya.

Frank Duggan, president of the Victims of Pan Am 103, which represents U.S. relatives, said: 'His people tried to have us believe he had one foot in the grave.

'Then to hear that he is doing quite well medically and is living in a luxury villa makes them all the more frustrated.'

Megrahi's lawyer in Scotland, Tony Kelly, declined to comment.


Yup they let this bomber free for an oil deal, like I said before!


Charles said...

Lockerbie is provably and without doubt the work on an Iranian who can be named and the CIA, some of whose operatives I can guess the names of, to allow Iran its "one and one only revenge" for the downing of IR-655 under the doctrine of "qesas".

It was staged so that Mr HW Bush could ascend to the throne in the White House and not have his presidential ambitions destroyed

Mr Megrahi was a fsll guy.

Gimmer said...

We will never know now since he was traded for oil. Now there never will be a review of this case. It's pathetic. He had smome roll in the bombing and should not be walking free nor should the west be making any kind of deals or doing an trade with libya.

Charles said...

Gimmer is starting from the wrong end of the argument. The point is that there is no valid evidence he had anything to do with the crime.

I realised as early as November 1991 that the charges against him and Mr Fhimah had been concocted and were based on false evidence. The only "proof" that he had anything to do with Lockerbie was that at Luqa Airport in MALTA on 21 December 1991.

All the other evidence (and there were only three other facts was invented by your sainted CIA.

And there is a phrase that you cannot make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.

Leave thinking about Lockerbie to somebody who has studied for 20 years and don't believe every single lie that your Government and its various agencies tell you.

Gimmer said...

If justice was to be served Scotland should have allowed Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed Al Megrahi to present the truth he said he had of his innocence and allowed the public and the Scottish courts to judge but now the truth will never be known. Charles you are a very arrogant man. The wheels were turning and many of the families of the UK victims were looking to see this case reopened but now that will never happen and Colonel Muammar Al-Gaddafi is laughing for sure. He just declared jihad on Switzerland for holding his son responsible for the beating his servants. This whole situation is pathetic.

Charles said...

Mr Gimmer,

If I am arrogant, you are ignorant and you do not know the first thing about court procedure.

A man on trial in a common-law system like mine, the Scottish (or yours, though you know little about it) NOT required to go into the box to defend his innocence. It is up to the prosecution to prove it. Nothing else.

In your country, I believe, they are called your "Miranda rights", and they apply as much to you as poor to Mr Megrahi.

The point is, Mr Gimmer, that there is an atrocity in Lockerbie to be solved and the wrong man has been charged, convicted and imprisoned.

I was delighted when he was allowed home to die, for he should have never been put in prison (or as you say jail) in the first place.

I have known this since November 1991.

When did you first learn of Lockerbie, Mr Gimmer?

If the case reopens, which the CIA sincerely hopes it never will, and the truth emerges, it will be my story that will be nearer to it than your derivative, self satisfying, US government provided LIES.

Your take on the behaviour of Colonel Gadafy's son and daughter-in law which is quite deplorable, is utterly irrelevant.

You seem to have been taught to write quite coherently, but not think in any meaningful sense.

Gimmer said...

I first learned of Lockerbie when it was happening and I am a women not a man, Charles. You are a rude person but I will leave your posts here. You are indeed very arrogant but anyone reading your posts can see that for themselves.

Gimmer said...

Oh Charles, I forgot, you might look up the other posts I have made about Libya here on this blog. You have judged me very wrongly especially about my politics in relation to my government and the Bush family. You seem to hate Americans and that makes me very sad because I love the UK.

Charles said...

Dear Ms Gimmer,

a) Your name did not belie your sex, sorry. Which is how I shall address you as now.

b) I do not hate Americans, though I hate much that America does and says. There is something very nasty about the "city set of a golden hill" stream of nationalism its worship of a most imperfect constitution , its "bully pulpit" approach to the ambitions of other nations that only the supreme arrogance of hyperpower can create. It will not doubt get worse before the USA learns that it is only one player in the world polity.
To take one point my own country had banned the slave trade and outlawed slavery 30 years before your country nearly destroyed itself doing so. That was the work of patriotic countrymen of mine who persuaded Parliament that a man could the the possess another was wrong, and that it had always been wrong for the country to have engaged in the slave trade. Even today many of your Constitution worshippers find it hard to remembers that its writers took as the basis of equivalence of human flesh that one white was equal to six whites.

c) I am not arrogant, I am forthright, which are two very different things. I say what I mean and try not to use mealy-mouthed words

d) I too remember that night in December 1988 and seeing the news flashed around the world. I was in Spain, and my Spanish in minimal, but the name was a familiar one to me. it was where I had often stopped off for a bacon butty and tea at 4 am from the overnight coach from London to Glasgow. Often wrongly portrayed as a small village, I knew it to be a small Scottish Southern Upland market town as well plugged into the rest of the world as anywhere. It was a devastating thing to happen to it.

e) I would not have become engaged with its fate if a close relative of mine had not been killed nine months later in a terrorist bombing in North Africa when an aircraft exploded. A Google search will confirm my credentials.

Charles said...

Part II

f) At this point I must claim I do not subscribe to the American all-inclusive definition of victimhood, which is sloppy and inaccurate. I am not a victim, my relative was.

g) By the time the French had solved their case (though the proofs had not been publicly made), there was still doubt who had done Lockerbie.

h) I was friends (newly since my relative's death) with many here in the UK who had lost relatives in Lockerbie, and I can tell you many were astonished when Mr Megrahi and Mr Fhimah were accused.

i) As the years went by, I could see that it was impossible that Lockerbie and my brother's crash had been perpetrated by the same group or even country.

j) in 1999 a trial in absentia was held in France over 6 people who had committed by brother's bombing. Such a trial does not produce the whole evidence, but it was clear Libya was guilty.

k) A very later the Zeist farce began. Uniquely dispensing with a jury, two men faced their accusers at an obscure air field in the Netherlands.

l) The evidence (as many in UK Lockerbie families has predicted) was slight, inconsistent, troubling and inconclusive.

m) After a long trial, but with amendment of the charges to exclude conspiracy, Mr Megrahi was convicted.

n) less than a year later an appeal failed though this showed a perfectly possible other route by which the bomb had be introduced onto Pan Am 103, by a break-in at Heathrow.

o) several years later the papers in the French case became public done into English

p) it was clear the French had a good case against their men, but it raised further doubts about Mr Megrahi's guilt.

r) I have analysed this to the point, that I how the break-in was the means by which the bomb was introduced, that there was a second bomb on the plane, not denied by the accident report, and that in common with many others I can show the evidence of Mr. Megrahi's guilt was faked

s) I go further and show that the bombing was carried out by a single Iranian (needed for the doctrine of qesas) in a plot devised and implemented by the CIA (fingerprints all over it)

t) I conclude that the plot was set up to give Iran an greed "one and one only revenge bombing" for the destruction of IR-655 and to ensure further Iranian actions had not destroyed Mr HW Bush's ascent to the presidential throne.

u) I am saddened by what your government and its agencies do to your country for petty political advantage and I hope for a true revolution, for you are governed by a kakistocracy.

v) It has taken me 20 years to get here, thinking and researching about it almost daily.

Gimmer said...

Charles have we not debated this topic on The Scotsman before?

Charles said...

I post everywhere where I can on Open ID, and the Scotsman requires registration, so probably no.

If you were discussing with another member of the British Lockerbie families, That's UKFF103, you would probably get a response as radical as mine on Mr. Megrahi's guilt, but not a decided as mine on who did it.

Personally I think they want UK institutions to take full responsibility for what in my opinion is an entirely US crime, with the Brits only being what is called "accessory after the fact".

The Scotsman is rather an "establishment" paper, and tends to go along with the conviction of Mr Megrahi. The Herald is rather more crtical (and is based in Glasgow, not Edinburgh) and tends to be more critical, but not to the extent of running my take on the affair.

Gimmer said...

Well Charles I agree on a great deal of what you say. I am a very anti-establisment sort myself and I can tell you the US military establisment and the Bush family are guilty of allot more than this. The USA needs to get out of Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq but I don't see that happening any time soon.

Charles said...

Dear Ms Gimmer,

Thank you for that note. I believe issues that we passionately feel about can be discussed with rationality, scrupulous attention to another's view, humour and dignity without resorting to gutter terms.

A very great Englishman, a politician and a scholar, passionate orator and supporter of great humanitarian causes died the other day, Michael Foot. I am sure you will never have heard of him.

Politically as far apart from Margaret Thatcher as it is possible to be, while he would excoriate her politically, he was the model of a gentleman in his personal dealings with her, and she acknowledged when he died.

Gimmer said...

Charles, I am very very concerned about the West. Why can't we see what is going on? I am deeply disturbed by the direction America has gone since the Clinton era. I had hopes Obama would be different but he seems to be just another pawn in the game of International business. It looks to me like he is under the thumb of the Industrial Military Complex to such a degree he will not make any serious changes in the status quo. He said he was about hope but I am running very low on hope.

Charles said...

I find it hard to answer general questions like this, so here's an anecdote. As a young main in the 1970s I was standing with a Scottish friend at a bus-stop in East Berlin. I spoke to him in English and an old lady overhead us. In precise Prussian accented English she said she had been in England, in Oxford, before WWI.

Her father was a German professor (of what I know not) on secondment or exchange there. It had clearly been the best experience of her life, with dancing and tea parties and punting, gorgeous young men in striped blazers and boaters with funny accents, so much more lively than a stuffy German provincial university.

Then the dream went and they returned to Germany. The British and Germans went for each others throats, some of her brothers died and German history for that forward thinking liberal minded young woman after the brilliant flame of Wiemar became terrible. And after WWII she was in the East, in the DDR which she held in obvious contempt, but being old she had little to fear from the communist authorities. Not so, her sister from the West,over on a visit, who stayed mute.

So that brave old lady ranted on about the regime until the bus came, and fell silent when we all got on.

She must be long dead or she would be 130 today. but where and how you think the world went wrong is dependent on where you were born and when, your own personal take on life, and so much, much more.

But take courage, stick to your principles and follow your star, and you can always hope for something to come better.

Gimmer said...

That was a perfect story about the old lady. I guess I really thought my country was for the common man and it does not look like that to me from where I am perched at this time. I love my nation and I want it to be all it can be and work for good in the world. I will always hold onto my principles. I have enjoyed very much talking with you here. I would love to have more people speak their minds.

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