Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi, the man convicted of the 1988 Lockerbie plane bombing, is expected to be released on compassionate grounds.
Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi was only a scapegoat because the attack was planned and financed by the Libyan regime. The victims were compensated and the affair is closed at the diplomatic level. Now Libya has normal relations with the US and UK.
Ali al-Megrahi’s sentence now should be his terminal illness which is in a way a “divine” punishment. He can be freed from prison. But it’s unlikely that he can be freed from his illness.
Criminals, if they act with intent and give a bad example for their acts, should serve their full sentence if their crimes cause great damage to individuals and society.
As the law is meant to be applied, compassion shouldn’t rule over objective judgement. Fair judgement means the criminal has exhausted all the legal procedures and the punishment fits the crime.
In the case of a collective crime, it doesn’t make sense to punish an individual on behalf of the rest of the group that is left free. The case of the Libyan agent, Ali Mohmet al-Megrahi, is a case in point. He wasn’t alone in the terror act. A whole regime was behind him. He was a scapegoat for political reasons. It is known that war criminals are those who give orders for cruel crimes, not soldiers who are rarely tried. Ali Mohmet al-Megrahi was just a “soldier” carrying the orders of his “generals” in Libya. It seems absurd that a case of this magnitude should be close by compensating the relatives of the victims and surrendering a Libyan agent. This was done for political convenience, but on the face of it, it remains absurd.
Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi should be freed. He was a mere instrument throughout the process of the Lockerbie attack. The Libyan regime used him for the attack, and then surrendered him to the British authorities as a step for normalizing its relations with the West. The fiasco shouldn’t continue. Ali al-Megrahi should be returned to his country.