This is a story about a plane that, shortly after taking off, is blown up in the air. Body parts, luggage and even still living passengers plummet to the ground. A man is wrongly accused and his government bullied into paying blood money to the sum of $2.7 billion. The real sponsors of the attack are let off the hook so that the US might invade Iraq in 1991 with Muslim allies.
There is a miscarriage of justice, in which foreign governments manufacture evidence and disregard other possibilities. A Palestinian militant gives an alibi as baby-sitting in Sweden and is not only believed but given immunity for the bombing. There is a Maltese clothing store owner, whose clothes were found in an exploded suitcase in Scotland. Those who speak out against the cover-up are gagged in some cases, indicted as being Iraqi spies in others. An American congressional aid, the daughter of an Alaskan governor, is arrested and injected with mind-altering drugs. Iraq is invaded again.
The truth starts to out, and there is talk of the convicted bomber going free. There is also talk of CIA agents running a heroin smuggling scheme with Hezbollah in order to free American hostages in Lebanon, as well as of a smoldering suitcase full of drugs found somewhere in rural Scotland. Records show that the Iranians paid millions of dollars to a Syrian-backed Palestinian splinter group two days after the bombing and five months after an Iranian civilian carrier was downed by the US and Khomeini vowed that the skies would rain blood and offered $10 million to anyone who would avenge Iran.
This certainly sounds like a cheap Middle Eastern spy-novel, but it's not. It's Hugh Miles's report on the Lockerbie trial and the seemingly real possibility that the Libyans had nothing to do with it, something that may soon be shown in a Scottish court of law.
If this report is true, then I may have to start giving a little more credence to some of the crazy-sounding conspiracy theories I hear in Lebanon.