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Scotland's Shame: Why Lockerbie Matters

Scotland's Shame: Why Lockerbie Matters [Kindle Edition]

John Ashton
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Product Description


'[A] slimmer assessment of the whole sorry saga than his previous study Megrahi: You Are My Jury, but no less damning' --James Robertson

'[E]xplains why Lockerbie is such a stain on the Scottish justice system' --James Robertson, Scotsman

Product Description

The bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over the small Scottish town of Lockerbie in December 1988 was one of the most notorious acts of terrorism in recent history. Its political and foreign policy repercussions have been enormous, and twenty-five years after the atrocity in which 270 lost their lives, debate still rages over the conviction of Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, as well as his controversial release on compassionate grounds by Scotland's SNP government in 2009. John Ashton argues that the guilty verdict, delivered by some of Scotland's most senior judges, was perverse and irrational, and details how prosecutors withheld numerous items of evidence that were favourable to Megrahi. It accuses successive Scottish governments of turning their back on the scandal and pretending that the country's treasured independent criminal justice system remains untainted. With numerous observers believing the Crown Office is out of control and the judiciary stuck in the last century, politicians must address these problems or their aspirations for Scotland to become a modern European social democracy are bound to fail.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 495 KB
  • Print Length: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Birlinn (6 Oct 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00F524LQC
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #170,838 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Catalogue of Errors - or Worse 15 Oct 2013
This is John Ashton's new book on why the Lockerbie affair is still so important as the 25th anniversary of the bombing approaches. It is a more accessible, less detailed work than his magisterial Megrahi: You are My Jury which appeared in 2012, and as such is a relatively straightforward summary of the whole sorry saga, ideal for readers with little knowledge of the subject. But it is also essential reading for those already well versed in the events. One would like to hope that it would also be read by politicians, civil servants, government ministers, policemen and most of all the Crown Office, which comes in for well deserved criticism on many pages of the book.

Two chapters in particular are a reminder of why the wrongful conviction of Abdelbaset al-Megrahi leaves such a stain on the Scottish justice system. The first, 'A Nation Condemned', details the appalling consequences for Libya of the sanctions imposed on it by the USA and UK through the UN. The second, 'The Crown out of Control', depicts the Crown Office (Scotland's sole prosecuting authority, which should be a completely impartial guardian of the delivery of justice) as being more concerned with saving face and protecting its own reputation than with recognising the massive embarrassment that its behaviour over the Lockerbie affair represents.

Sooner or later the political and legal establishments of Scotland are going to have to acknowledge what is now generally accepted by the public: that the Lockerbie investigation, prosecution, trial and conviction were a catalogue of errors at best, and of deliberate cover-ups and dodgy manipulations of the evidence at worst. Meanwhile, this book shines yet more light on this shameful business.
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