Donkeys vs People: The Media Circus
Even before Megrahi left
I am not discussing here the Scottish decision or the
Ok got that off my chest now let me go back to my topic.
Sadly, the majority of Libyans are not that interested in Megrahi's fate. In trying to catch up with the lost years (partly due to sanctions and partly our fault) many of us have become so superficial that we'd rather strive for a bigger income, buy more bling, cars, land, farms and show off. The least on the mind of a large number of my compatriots are things like "has there been justice?" Many of us as so weary of this story (over 20 years now) and believe that it is old and that guilty or not we have paid to the West what they wanted so can this please go away now.
While it is understandable that family members of the victims of the Pan AM flight are saddened and even angered at this outcome, I find it hypocritical that the
It was actually Bulgarian reader and blogger Maya who reminded me of an interesting comparison:
In the words of Ghadafi: "Perhaps they have feelings, and we don't? Maybe we are donkeys, and they are people?". Sometimes one wonders.
The Lockerbie issue and the Libyan Children with AIDS issue are actually quite similar.
(1) Alleged Libyan bomber convicted and sentenced - after bringing a country to its knees with sanctions- by a European court under immense
(2) Megrahi serves 8 years in prison in
(3) US families receive 10 million $ compensation each – not sure what the Scottish families did. ( I'm OK with the concept of compensation after all it is blood money, you can take it and usually forgive ( ie drop the charges) or relinquish your right to take it and either drop the charges or not)
(4) Global circumstance change and the political machine is set in motion.
(5) Megrahi released to die home on compassionate grounds.
(6) Megrahi received home and given what looks like a hero's welcome. There is no life to resume. We still don't know who did it (except the
(7) Outrage by the West
(8) Megrahi gets a kiss and hug from the head of state the following day- more outrage- but is that such a big deal? just reflect about it I don't need to spell it out...
(9) British diplomats think the release of Libyan national was worth it.
Libyan children injected with AIDS issue
(1) Bulgarian medics (+ their Palestinian friend) convicted by a Libyan court for allegedly injecting Libyan children in hospital in
(2) They served 8 years also in Libyan prison.
(3) Global circumstances change and the political machine is set in motion and the death sentence is lifted from over their head.
(4) The death sentence is commuted to prison only and the medics are released to
(5) Medics given a widely broadcasted real hero's welcome in
(6) The west celebrates and one more point 'gained' for freedom from those 'evil' Arabs.
(7) Outrage by Libyans only – nobody else cares
(8) Compensation or blood money finally set in motion for 1 million $ per family. Bargain price he he he. 10:1 and European diplomats think that the release of the European medics and their tag-along Palestinian friend was worth it.
The funny part is that unlike the media's portrayal which carried two photos only across the world and made a mountain out of a molehill, Megrahi did not receive a hero's welcome. The streets were the usual when he returned because the ordinary Libyan as I said had more pressing things to think about like shopping for Ramadan and eking out a living. But there is nothing preventing his tribe, family and friends from welcoming him at the airport and feasting him at home. After all for them he is innocent and anyway just because your dad is a convict you don't stop loving him. One article states that thousands of jubilant crowds greeted him, then a few paragraphs later states that it was a low key approach: " al-Megrahi's welcome was relatively muted. Hundreds of people waiting in the crowd for his plane were rushed away by authorities at the last minute, and the arrival was not aired live on state TV."
Hell I could raise at least 25,000 relatives to greet me when I return from treatment overseas or even if I had gone to prison. For them I'm still Highlander.
So to go back to the beginning Maya reminded me that reactions are logical depending on where you are situated. The only problem is that we need to be fair and either condemn both the Bulgarians (and the West) and Libyans for their jubilation. Or shut our mouth.
I could not care less about the relationship between the two Western allies, it's their problem and they will sort it out soon, it's just that some egos have been bruised and some people did not get a piece of the political pie and so are bitter about it. What I'm worried about is that both countries will bury their differences and unite to somehow inflict pain on
My biggest disappointment is that now that the documents have been sealed forever we will never know what really happened on the ill fated Pan Am flight and more than a lingering doubt will remain about this unresolved mystery.