Obama Must Have Signed Off On Lockerbie Terrorist

Discussion in 'Politics' started by bugscoe, Aug 31, 2009.

  1. Scarborough: Obama Admin Must Have Signed Off On Lockerbie Terrorist Release

    By Mark Finkelstein
    August 31, 2009 - 09:12 ET

    If Joe Scarborough is right, this could be a game-changing blow to Barack Obama . . .

    On today's Morning Joe, Scarborough left no doubt that he believes the Obama administration acquiesced to the release by the British government of Abdelbaset Al Megrahi, the convicted Lockerbie murderer and terrorist.

    Scarborough was reacting to reports suggesting that, contrary to initial claims, the release was done at the behest of Gordon Brown's British government, and was not an independent move by Scotland.

    American governments don't fall like British ones can. But if it's true that Pres. Obama gave the green light for the release of a terrorist directly responsible for the deaths of dozens of Americans, his administration will suffer a huge blow. How intensely will the MSM pursue the story?
  2. They won't mention it. State run media will let it just go away.
  3. Killer's release demands answers
    Did U.S. get to weigh in on his fate? Most of the dead were American.

    Robert P. George

    is McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence at Princeton University and founder of the American Principles Project (www.americanprinciplesproject.org)

    A few days before Christmas in 1988, a charming, brilliant, and strikingly beautiful young American woman boarded Pan Am Flight 103 in London bound for the United States. Her name was Valerie Canady. She was headed home to celebrate the holidays with her mom and dad.

    As all the world knows, Pan Am 103 never landed. It was blown apart in the skies above Lockerbie, Scotland, when a bomb planted on the plane by Libyan terrorists exploded. All the passengers were killed. Valerie's body was never recovered. She was seated directly over the bomb. There was literally nothing left of that beautiful girl for the Scottish authorities to send home to her loved ones.

    As a lawyer with the firm of Robinson & McElwee in Charleston, W.Va., I represented Valerie's family in the litigation against the Libyan regime. But my relationship with Valerie was deeper than that. She had been my friend since childhood.

    My parents and Valerie's parents had been friends from before Valerie and I were born. We grew up in Morgantown, W.Va., where Valerie's father taught chemistry at West Virginia University. Valerie was an only child, and like a sister to me and my four younger brothers.

    We shared Valerie's parents' pride in her. She was an outstanding student who graduated from WVU with a perfect 4.0 grade point average. She was an extraordinarily gifted linguist who picked up foreign languages almost effortlessly. She was also an exceptional athlete - outrunning most of her almost-brothers, whether the race was a sprint or a half-marathon. Yet she never tooted her own horn. Her accomplishments spoke for themselves.

    After receiving her degree, Valerie won a job with the H.J. Heinz Co., and began her professional life in the company's Pittsburgh headquarters. Admired not only for her abilities, but also for her personal warmth and kindness, she made a great impression on everyone. Having big things in mind for the prodigiously talented young star it had hired, Heinz sent her to England for a stint in its London offices.

    This is a sketch of the life of one of the 270 people, 180 of them Americans, who were cruelly murdered by a Libyan terrorist named Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi and his coconspirators. Megrahi was tried and convicted for his crimes in a Scottish court. Yet after serving only eight years in prison, he was released this month by the Scottish justice minister, Kenny MacAskill, and sent back to Libya, a free man. There he received a hero's welcome from a throng that included the son of Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi.

    Like most Americans, I was shocked and appalled by this decision. It was allegedly made on grounds of "compassion" for a man who is said to be suffering from terminal cancer (albeit a killer who murdered more people than Charles Manson, Ted Bundy, Timothy McVeigh, and Jack the Ripper - combined). Questions have now arisen, however, as to whether the decision was influenced by other considerations. As British journalist Philip Stephens has written: "No amount of protestation will counter the impression that this was essentially a political decision - that Britain judged it in the national interest, diplomatic and commercial, for Col. Gadhafi to be indulged."

    However that may be, anybody who is thinking about whether the decision could possibly be justified should consider its impact on Valerie's parents, William and Loulie Canady, and hundreds if not thousands of other family members of victims.

    The Canadys mourn their daughter every day. Indeed, scarcely a waking hour goes by during which they do not think about her. The anguish they suffer - and have suffered for more than 20 years - is nearly unimaginable. Yet their pain, and the pain of other victims' families, was profoundly intensified, first by the decision to release Megrahi, and then by video footage of the killer being welcomed home to Libya.

    This alleged act of "compassion" can only be described as an act of cruelty to the Canadys and other families of Megrahi's and Gadhafi's victims. It is true that sometimes justice must be tempered by compassion; but the release of an unrepentant mass murderer after only eight years in prison is a false and misguided compassion. As FBI Director Robert S. Mueller has said, "It makes a mockery of the grief of the families."

    Megrahi is now a free man in his native land; we cannot hold him accountable for his crimes. But the people of Britain, as citizens of a democratic nation, can hold their government accountable for releasing him. And we in the United States should demand accountability of our leaders, too.

    What did American officials know about the decision to free Megrahi and when did they know it? What, if anything, did our government do to try to prevent it? Remember, 180 of Megrahi's victims were our fellow citizens. President Obama had a right to be informed in advance of what Scotland was planning to do and a duty to do everything in his power diplomatically to prevent this outrage.

    Not long ago, the president saw fit to insinuate himself into a dispute between a Harvard professor and a Cambridge, Mass., police officer over a disorderly conduct arrest. It was hardly an issue of national importance. The release by an ally of the murderer of 180 Americans is. If Obama did not pick up the phone and call British Prime Minister Gordon Brown to try to stop the release of Megrahi, then I want to know why he didn't. I hope you want to know, too.

  4. I just want to know why this terrorist didn't get a beachside bungalow in Bermuda. Its just not fair. All terrorists deserve beachside bungalows in Bermuda. Just ask Obama.
  5. So now Obama is responsible for the British governments actions ? LOL!!!!!!!!!!

  6. Only an idiot like you would actually think that Obama did not sign off on the release. If Bush was still the President, this terrorist would never have been released. Count on it.
  7. You've got terrible comprehension skills.
  8. I think you can count on that. It will be treated as birth certificate controversy, Bill Ayers mentorship, Toney Rezko, etc, ie not fit for discussion.

    Timid republicans will quickly get the message and drop it.
  9. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1583130/Two-terrorists-released-from-prison-early.html

    Two terrorists released from prison early

    By Philip Johnston, Home Affairs Editor
    Published: 7:00PM GMT 28 Mar 2008

    Yassin Nassari was freed from Wakefield prison last month
    Two convicted terrorists have been released early under a controversial Government scheme to ease prison over-crowding, ministers have been forced to admit.

    One is a radical Muslim cleric - Yassin Nassari, 29 - who was caught trying to smuggle blueprints on how to build a missile into Britain.

    Related Articles
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    Terrorists 'may still serve half jail terms'
    News email
    The identity of the second terrorist had not been made public but the BBC reported he was Abdul Muneem Patel, who was released from Glen Parva jail in Leicestershire on Jan 7 this year.

    Patel, of east London, was jailed for six months at the Old Bailey in October 2007 after a jury found him guilty of having a terrorism-related explosives manual.

    The judge said there was no reasonable excuse to have the manual - but added the teenager was not a "radicalised or politicised Islamist".

    After news of the early releases became public, Jack Straw, the Justice Secretary, was forced to announce emergency measures to prevent the future early release of terrorists.

    However Mr Straw was accused of putting Britons in danger following the release of the men before they had served their sentences.

    David Davis, the shadow Home Secretary, said that the releases "defied common sense" coming just days before the Government attempts to toughen the country's terrorism laws to allow suspects to be held for longer.

    "Jack Straw must now say when he knew about this, and why he has only just acted," Mr Davis said.

    "Was Nassari [the convicted terrorist] released with or without his knowledge? "If it was without, who on earth is running his department?"

    "The Government's perverse approach to security defies common sense. On the one hand, they are trying to pass a new law extending the period for holding innocent people – convicted of nothing – when we already have the longest period of pre-charge detention in the free world. On the other hand, they are releasing a terrorist we have managed to bring to justice, a dangerous man convicted in our courts for researching how to deploy military weapons in this country."

    Liberal Democrat justice spokesman Chris Huhne added: "There is a huge discrepancy between the Government's rhetoric on terrorism and its actions. Next week ministers will bring before Parliament unnecessary and draconian legislation on pre-charge detention in a desperate attempt to look tough on terrorism.

    "People convicted of terrorist offences can be back in society having served less than half their sentence because of our desperately overstretched prison system."

    Mr Nassari was jailed for three and half years last July for possessing material that would be useful to terrorists.

    He was caught trying to smuggle blueprints showing how to build a missile into Britain but was cleared of a more serious charge of possessing articles for terrorist purposes.

    Nassari was freed from Wakefield prison last month under the 'end of custody licence' scheme which allows inmates to leave jail up to 18 days before the half-way point of their term. It was brought in as an emergency measure to ease pressures on the system caused by a record rise in the number of prisoners to more than 80,000.

    Figures to be released on Monday will show that more than 20,000 offenders have been released early since the scheme came into effect last summer. However, Nassari is believed to be the first sentenced to terrorist-related crimes to benefit.

    The disclosure last night drew fresh criticism of the scheme from the Conservatives, who say it should be scrapped.

    Nassari from Ealing, West London, was stopped at Luton airport in May 2006 after getting off an easyJet flight from Holland with his wife.

    Police discovered a mass of jihadi material on a laptop and removable hard drive including blueprints for an Al Qassam 1.5 rocket used by the Palestinian terror group Hamas.

    The files showed detailed measurements and information about the missile components, how to make the propellant and explosive charge and the assembly of the completed rocket.

    Also hidden in the files were articles entitled 'Virtues of martyrdom in the path of Allah,' 'Islamic Ruling on the Permissibility of Self-Sacrificial Operation – Suicide or Martyrdom?' 'Taking care of the family left behind by the fighter' and 'Providing for the families of the martyrs.'

    Nassari had been a student at Westminster University where the welfare officer described him as "wearing western clothes and enjoying a drink".

    He disappeared between 2002 and 2003 re-appearing in long robes and headgear and referring to himself as "emir" of the student's Islamic society.

    After his arrest, Nassari was remanded in custody for more than a year and was released eight months after being jailed at the Old Bailey.

    Some prisoners can qualify for release four and half months earlier than the half-way point under a home detention curfew (HDC) – or tagging – scheme.

    But inmates convicted under terrorist laws cannot benefit from HDC – though they do qualify for the 18-day early release if they are serving less than four years.

    A Justice Ministry spokesman initially said: "The prisoner met the criteria for early release under the End of Custody Licence (ECL) scheme. Where a prisoner satisfies the criteria then release must follow."

    The National Offender Management Service said arrangements were made with the relevant police and probation services to ensure they were aware of Nassari's release. He is subject to licence conditions and to probation arrangements.

    There was no suggestion he had reoffended while on early release.

    The spokesman added: "Terrorism-related offences involving serious violence – such as using explosives to commit GBH or hijacking are excluded from ECL.

    "All those released on ECL would have to have been released at their statutory release date a maximum of 18 days later. "It is for this reason that ECL operates according to precise fixed criteria.''

    However, later, Mr Straw said: "In the light of this case I have taken action to tackle this issue – no more prisoners convicted under terrorism legislation will be released through the ECL scheme."

    Since the scheme was introduced 3,400 violent offenders have been freed earl and 367 crimes have been committed by prisoners on early release – including one murder.

    Around 700 prisoners have been recalled for breaching the conditions of the scheme but 125 failed to respond.

  10. Terrorists Released from Guantanamo Will Continue Their Jihad

    By Allah, imprisonment only increased our persistence in our principles for which we went out, did jihad for, and were imprisoned for."

    These are the words loudly uttered by an al-Qaeda cadren detained at Guantanamo for a number of years and released in 2007 back to the region. This statement comes at a time the detention center has been ordered to be shut down within a year. This episode provides evidence that Jihadism as an ideology does not respond to the political culture of democracy nor are the indoctrinated Jihadists impacted by the moral and legal debate within what they see as the sphere of the infidels. The Guantanamo legal and ethical drama will continue to be discussed in the United Sates and the West, but for now let's look at the outpouring harsh facts.

    Two men released from the prison known as “Gitmo” at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba have appeared in a video posted on a Jihadi site, according to the SITE Intelligence Group web site. The most notorious of the two, a Saudi man identified as Abu Sufyan al-Azdi al-Shahri, or "Prisoner Number 372," has been "elevated to the senior ranks of al-Qaeda in Yemen," a US counter-terrorism official has said.

    The other man on the video is Abu al-Hareth Muhammad al-Oufi, identified as an al-Qaeda commander. SITE stated he was "Prisoner Number 333." Reviewing the video provided by the Laura Mansfield monitoring group. I analyzed the statements made by al-Shahri and al-Oufi in the original Arabic.

    On the video, as reported accurately by sites and news agencies, al-Shihri is seen sitting with three other men under a flag of the "Islamic State of Iraq," the regional command of Al-Qaeda' in Mesopotamia. The other two Jihadists in the video were identified as Abu Baseer al-Wahayshi and Abu Hureira Qasm al-Rimi (aka Abu Hureira al-Sana'ani). Al-Shiri was transferred from Guantanamo to Saudi Arabia in 2007, a US counter-terrorism official told AFP.

    A U.S. source confirmed to AP that Said Ali al-Shihri, "who was jailed at Guantanamo for six years after his capture in Pakistan, has resurfaced as a leader of a Yemeni branch of al-Qaida." Al-Shihri was released by the US in 2007 to the Saudi government for "rehabilitation." But this week a statement posted on the site declared he is now the top deputy in "al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula," the regional command for Bin Laden's organization operating from Yemen with cells across the peninsula. The terror group has been responsible for attacks on the US Embassy in Yemen's capital Sana.

    Per U.S. documents obtained by Associated Press, "al-Shihri was stopped at a Pakistani border crossing in December 2001 with injuries from an airstrike and recuperated at a hospital in Quetta for a month and a half. Within days of leaving the hospital, he became one of the first detainees sent to Guantanamo." According to the same sources, "Al-Shihri allegedly traveled to Afghanistan two weeks after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, provided money to other fighters and trained in urban warfare at a camp north of Kabul, Afghanistan."

    But more troubling is the fact that al-Shihri was a contact person between al-Qaeda and Iran. As reported by AP, he was "an alleged travel coordinator for al-Qaida who was accused of meeting extremists in Mashad, Iran, and briefing them on how to enter Afghanistan." Such a person operating in the most strategic area of Jihadism, the most dangerous bridge of (potential) cooperation between al-Qaeda and the Khomeinist regime, was released from Guantanamo on the basis that he said "bin Laden had no business representing Islam, denied any links to terrorism and expressed interest in rejoining his family in Saudi Arabia." When asked about his Iranian trips, he allegedly answered that he was "buying carpets for his store in Riyadh."

    Is this for real? Had these facts not been cited from official US documents and had I and many colleagues not viewed the video personally, it would have been hard to believe that the Guantanamo release of Jihadists was that tragic for national security and for the future of US and allied efforts in the confrontation with Terror forces.

    Unfortunately, the reality of al-Qaeda's tactics regarding Guantanamo or any other detention center, judicial, administrative or military, raises unavoidable questions and brings about sobering conclusions:

    1) Former inmates, in this case Abu Sufyan al-Azdi al-Shahri (Prisoner No 372) and Abu al-Hareth Muhammad al-Oufi (Prisoner No 333), are being elevated to the senior ranks of Al-Qaeda. The release of Jihadi Terrorists to their countries or other countries in the region didn't transform them into ordinary citizens but reinserted them in al-Qaeda's network. Furthermore, Salafi Jihadi chat rooms are mentioning the video and propagating the argument that those released from Guantanamo are going to be not only well received and made into heroes but will become the leaders of the Jihad (al-Qaeda and others) against the United States, the West and moderates in the region.

    2) On what ground were they released? This is an important question because it projects what will happen when the other Gitmo detainees will be released. What is the measurement that US authorities have adopted to release al-Qaeda members from Guantanamo? Was it statements the Jihadists made about their forthcoming life? All al-Shahri had to do was criticize Bin Laden and pledge to return to a normal life? How did experts and psychologists guide the government in terms of concluding that indeed the Terrorists have reformed?

    3) Why have these released detainees to Yemen (or other countries) been allowed to re-emerge as al-Qaeda leaders there? Why were able to travel across the region and reorganize? What would this tell us about our "partners" in the so-called War against Terror?

    4) Why has US intelligence been unable to predict that these detainees would reinsert in al-Qaeda after being released? Or did US intelligence predict the outcome but policy makers still decided to release them?

    5) Shutting down Guantanamo may be a decision based on "political, moral and strategic communications" considerations. This debate is not over apparently. But this latest video brings hard evidence that the issue isn't about a camp to be shut down but about an ideology to be countered. For according to al-Qaeda's manuals, the Jihadists are trained for when they are in detention and are prepared for all other scenarios: facing all sorts of courts, becoming martyrs or being released to perform Jihad again.

    Al Qaeda has its own detention tactics and its own post-detention strategy. The United States must catch up with the terror forces to combat them. It should have developed counter strategies for both stages, with or without Guantanamo. Unless proven wrong, the facts show a failure in both stages. This Jihadi manipulation is a chilling reminder of the "silence of the lambs." It is time to bridge the gap.

    Cutting Edge Terrorism Analyst Walid Phares is the author of the Confrontation: Winning the War against Future Jihad. He is the Director of the Future Terrorism Project at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and a visiting scholar at the European Foundation for De
    #10     Aug 31, 2009