Friday, October 31, 2008

Libya pays damages to settle U.S. lawsuits

News from the U.S. State Department that Libya has paid the last $1.5 billion it owed to settle remaining claims from terrorism cases and open the door to full diplomatic relations with the United States is strange news, indeed. It's hard to think of an outlaw nation like Libya and its crazy leader, Moammar Gadhafi, rejoining the world of civilized nations, but that's precisely what happened today when U.S. President Bush signed an executive order restoring that country's standing, according to the Reuters international news service. After all, this is the same North African country that has been blamed for acts of international terrorism, such as the 1988 bombing of Pan Am flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, that killed 270 people, and the 1986 bombing of a discotheque in Berlin. U.S. warplanes bombed Tripoli and Benghazi in 1986 after the discotheque bombing that killed two U.S. soldiers. The top U.S. diplomat in the Middle East, David Welch, who negotiated the complex deal with Libya, called the country's rehabilitation from terrorist nation to U.S. ally "historic." The author of the Libyan Claims Resolution Act, Sen. Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey, applauded Friday's development. "American victims and their families have waited decades for Libya to pay for its deadly acts of violence and today they have received long-overdue justice," he said, according to Reuters. "I am pleased that our relentless pressure and support for terror victims has led to this historic moment." Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice visited Libya in September, the first visit by such a high-ranking U.S. official since 1953, after negotiations that took months to resolve.


Anonymous said...

Isn't it about time for rouge leaders like Moammar Gadhafi to finally come clean on past atrocities and hopefully realize that killing inocent people does not advance humanity one single bit. I know of an Army Captain who was killed over Scottland which caused his friend, also an Army Captain stationed in the Middle East to choose as his doctorate years later - 'The mathematical matrix modeling of terrorist activities' - if my memory still serves me right. Do people and LEADERS really believe that people can or will forget such actions? Blind authority is blind unto itself and the need of some humans to be recognized, even in death, is so ignorent and abhorrant to any rational thinker. Moammar Gadhafi has proven that he has acted as a shallow little man in a world standing on the shoulders of giants. May he continue to grow and learn as person and may he also relinquish power with grace to bigger men.

Stephen Michael Porter Miller the 1st and Last

Eclaire said...

See how important it is for nations to talk to each other!