Monday, August 31, 2009

Lockerbie part of a bigger story

1986: Libya is accused of bombing a Berlin disco, killing two U.S. servicemen. A defector from Israel's intelligence agency, Mossad, claims it framed Libya. Khadaffy demands Arabs increase oil prices.

1987: The U.S. tries to kill Khadaffy but fails. Eighty-eight Libyan civilians die.

1988: France wages a secret desert war with Libya over mineral-rich Chad. France's secret service, SDECE, is ordered to kill Khadaffy. A bomb is put on Khadaffy's private jet but, after Franco-Libyan relations abruptly improve, the bomb is removed before it explodes.

1988: The U.S. intervenes on Iraq's side in its eight-year war against Iran. A U.S. navy Aegis cruiser, Vincennes, violates Iranian waters and "mistakenly" shoots down an Iranian civilian Airbus airliner in Iran's air space. All 288 civilians aboard die. Then vice-president George H.W. Bush vows, "I'll never apologize ... I don't care what the facts are."

The Vincennes' trigger-happy captain is decorated with the Legion of Merit medal for this crime by Bush after he becomes president. Washington quietly pays Iran $131.8 million US in damages.

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