Private Eye logo
twitter
twitter
rss
rss
rss
gnitty
in the back
From the Eye archives
The Lockerbie Files
Issue 1246, 29th September 2009
flight justice.jpg
Lockerbie: The Flight From Justice »
The Libya ‘link’
So was Libya even involved in the Lockerbie bombing? The answer is that nobody knows. Libya certainly had a grim record in state-sponsored terrorism, but there was scant evidence to link it directly to Lockerbie at the Zeist trial. The links to Libya came from the suggestion that a fragment of a timing device which survived the blast was an MST-13 timer produced by a Swiss company, Mebo, which had supplied some to Libya. But it had also supplied them to East Germany; and in any event Libya could have sold them on. Libya could well have had links with the PFLP and PPF cells; but again there was no evidence of such a link.

So why, then, was all this evidence against the Syrian- and Iranian-backed PFLP and PPF ignored? As Paul Foot explained in Private Eye’s special report, Lockerbie: The Flight from Justice, initially they were pursued - for a solid 18 months, right up to the point of announcing that arrests were imminent. Then suddenly the political mood in the Middle East changed dramatically. Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait and the US/UN forces needed Arab support beyond their usual friends in Egypt. The Syrians were themselves worried about Hussein’s expansion in the area, and in November 1990 deals were signed to both neutralize Iran and to bring Syrian forces into the combined operation known as Desert Storm to reclaim Kuwait.

As Paul Foot described it, Lockerbie was to be played down and President Bush snr declared: “Syria took a bum rap on this.” No wonder no one now wants a public inquiry and the question remains: who was really behind the biggest ever terrorist atrocity on British soil?

Why the wrong man was in the dock »

Read Paul Foot's definitive account, Lockerbie: The Flight From Justice »

More top stories in the latest issue:

A WRIGHT MESS
Bribery scandal surrounding Saudi contract could be first big test for the new attorney general Jeremy Wright.

FAMILY FUNDS
Who is Peter De Putron, the offshore hedge fund boss who bankrolled City minister Andrea Leadsom and the Tory party?

BORDERING ON INCOMPETENCE
How repeated Home Office mistakes left a young doctor at risk from a dangerous crossbow-wielding stalker.

CIVIL RIGHTS AND WRONGS
Questions over the troubling arrest record of the senior civil servant behind Jimmy Savile’s appointment to Broadmoor.

SUNKEN TREASURE
Underwater rescue robot charity sinks without trace.

SHARIA-GUARD ACTION
The Law Society looks increasingly isolated in its support for Sharia-compliant wills, which discriminate against female heirs.

SHARK BAIT
A very special treat for new graduates – Sussex University invites student loans boss to graduation ceremonies!

private eye issue 1371
To read more from issue 1246 you can order a copy from our archive of back issues here.
gnitty
More From This Issue
Crossword
Win a £100 prize
more »
Crossword
Strips
Adventures Of Mr Milibean
more »
Strips
Number
Crunching
more »
Number
Also Available Online
More From This Issue
Private Eye Issue 1371
private eye Only In The Magazine

John Sweeney loses temper with ‘Managementologists’… PHWOAR! What a Reshuffle!!… The Seven Stages of Grieve… Nick Clegg’s Saturday Kitchen Cocktail: The Flaming Idiot… How to throw a party for a one-year-old Royal baby… England Sportsmen set ‘Bad Example’… Memories of Test Match Special, with Henry Blofeld and Peter Baxter, as told to Craig Brown

And also...

- Telegraphic Details: Former hack convicted of rape and other sex offences.
- How Authors Relax: A one-upmanship summer special
- Alive & Shipping: Scene and Heard watches live animal exports at Ramsgate
For all these stories you can buy the magazine or subscribe here and get delivery direct to your home every fortnight.
Next issue on sale: 5th August 2014.

Private Eye Issue 1370
gnitty