Michigan State alum and probable CIA double agent Moussa Koussa has been permitted to keep his money obtained in service to the Libyan government. Koussa may have loved East Lansing in the ’70’s, but nothing tops running Libyan intelligence while on the CIA payroll AND keeping your money while escaping prosecution. Koussa did not announce plans to hit the French Riviera or retire to Milan, but these are safe bets.
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration dropped financial sanctions on Monday against the top Libyan official who fled to Britain last week, saying it hoped the move would encourage other senior aides to abandon Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi, the country’s embattled leader.
But the decision to unfreeze bank accounts and permit business dealings with the official, Moussa Koussa, underscored the predicament his defection poses for American and British authorities, who said on Tuesday that Scottish police and prosecutors planned to interview Mr. Koussa about the 1988 Lockerbie bombing and other issues “in the next few days.”
Mr. Koussa’s close knowledge of the ruling circle, which he is believed to be sharing inside a British safe house, could be invaluable in trying to strip Colonel Qaddafi of support.
But as the longtime Libyan intelligence chief and foreign minister, Mr. Koussa is widely believed to be implicated in acts of terrorism and murder over the last three decades, including the assassination of dissidents, the training of international terrorists and the bombing of Pan Am 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland.
“He was both the left arm and the right arm of the regime, its bloodhound,” said Dirk Vandewalle, a Dartmouth professor who has studied Libya for many years.
Mr. Vandewalle recalled a dinner with friends in Libya a few years ago when one man mentioned Mr. Koussa’s name, a dangerous faux pas. “The conversation just stopped,” he said. “People switched to a different topic. Koussa was considered beyond the pale.”
Koussa, you may recall, was about the only leading Libyan government official who was not barred from international travel and subject to arrest. Qaddafi’s sons and daughter were placed under international travel restrictions and subject to arrest.
The CIA might as well take out advertising space in Times Square to broadcast their decades long affiliation with Mr. Koussa. Of course, they will not. They will, however, permit Western audiences to be deluded into the notion that Koussa was a “true defector,” a true believer who came around to the opinion that the game was over. Koussa is the one, under CIA instruction, who was able to reinsert Libya into the family of nations. He negotiated terms with European powers and Washington. He authored the abandonment of Libya’s nuclear enterprise (which was done based on a US pledge for support which was rescinded subsequent to Tripoli’s scrapping its nuke programme).
More from the New York Times:
Brian P. Flynn, a New Yorker whose brother, J. P. Flynn, died in the Lockerbie bombing, said the lifting of sanctions on Mr. Koussa distressed him and other family members of the 270 victims. They have long believed that Mr. Koussa had a role in ordering the bombing, and Scottish prosecutors have requested access to him.
“It’s all logical in the diplomatic game they need to play,” said Mr. Flynn, vice president of Victims of Pan Am Flight 103. “But at what cost to our system of justice? He’s a mass-murder suspect.”
Administration officials hastened to say that dropping the sanctions, which were imposed on March 15, had no bearing on the investigation of any crimes that Mr. Koussa might have committed in office. The American Lockerbie investigation has never been closed, and law enforcement officials said the F.B.I. would like to talk with Mr. Koussa.
Why does the F.B.I. wish to speak with Mr. Koussa? Could it be because the Scottish police implicated the F.B.I. in the planting of “evidence” at Lockerbie?
From the Scotsman:
A FORMER Scottish police chief has given lawyers a signed statement claiming that key evidence in the Lockerbie bombing trial was fabricated. The retired officer – of assistant chief constable rank or higher – has testified that the CIA planted the tiny fragment of circuit board crucial in convicting a Libyan for the 1989 mass murder of 270 people…
The officer, who was a member of the Association of Chief Police Officers Scotland, is supporting earlier claims by a former CIA agent that his bosses “wrote the script” to incriminate Libya…
The vital evidence that linked the bombing of Pan Am 103 to Megrahi was a tiny fragment of circuit board which investigators found in a wooded area many miles from Lockerbie months after the atrocity.
The fragment was later identified by the FBI’s Thomas Thurman as being part of a sophisticated timer device used to detonate explosives, and manufactured by the Swiss firm Mebo, which supplied it only to Libya and the East German Stasi.
At one time, Megrahi, a Libyan intelligence agent, was such a regular visitor to Mebo that he had his own office in the firm’s headquarters.
The fragment of circuit board therefore enabled Libya – and Megrahi – to be placed at the heart of the investigation. However, Thurman was later unmasked as a fraud who had given false evidence in American murder trials, and it emerged that he had little in the way of scientific qualifications.
Then, in 2003, a retired CIA officer gave a statement to Megrahi’s lawyers in which he alleged evidence had been planted.