The wheels of extortion grind exceedingly slowly

Orac has the latest news on the Tripoli Six, the health care workers who were falsely accused of spreading AIDS in a Libyan hospital and were sentenced to death. The good news is that they aren’t dead yet, the Libyan government is still wheedling for reparations, and they’re showing some signs of backing off from a hard line position. Nothing’s certain, but at least the negotiations are creaking along slowly in the right direction.


  1. Sean says

    Shame the US has blown its entire reserve of World Karma in Iraq. Having some left to spend dropping a few demonstration pieces of ordance in Libya could have been useful.

    Gaddafi is one of the few world leaders who seems to have actually jumped in the desired direction after being on the receiving end.

    Was this the end game which the Libyan government was aiming for when this case began? Strikes me as strange that they let this escalate to the point where six executions are so close to reality. Libya has spent quite a bit of time being a pariah state and are only just now shedding its isolation. Did they expect some for of Western concessions before it came to this, or is the case actually being handled by nutters?

  2. Fifi says

    Was this the end game which the Libyan government was aiming for when this case began?

    Not an expert on the case but it seems that the scandal grew outside of Gaddafi’s control and someone in the Libyan junta needed fall guys to cover his own arse. So they picked those 6 Bulgarians to take the blame for a mess that existed before they arrived. Gaddafi is more or less taking the affair in stride and his son, Muhammad, is now trying to make a buck out of it. Don’t worry, if those $10 millions per head are paid, it won’t be to the families.

  3. Fifi says


    And, by the way, no. Bombing Gaddafi would not work.

    When the US did it in 1986, they killed ~100 people and Gaddafi was not one of them. On top of that, he’s now politically much weaker than 20 years ago and he would have to harden the regime even more to survive internal challenges. The Tripoli 6 would be the first to pay. And you also forget that the US and Libya are best buddies now. Tripoli is crawling with US oilmen. The US don’t give a flying f**k about the 6.

    Now, in the bad old days of the Cold War, the Bulgarians were pretty darn good at certain things. Google for “Georgi Markov umbrella”. And Gaddafi’s beloved brat, Muhammad, loves to spend time and money in Europe.

    Mmm, interesting …

  4. Fifi says

    Sorry, and it was Saif Gaddafi I was referring in the previous posts, not Muhammad.

  5. Sean says

    Wow, Gaddafi wasn’t killed in the 1986 bombing?

    You know, I might have, just maybe, have figured that out.

    The Bulgarians were great. Best Cold War henchmen ever. East Germans? Bah, we have our own West Germans. Romanians? Too busy making gymnasts. Czechs? Not dedicated enough to the Party. Bulgars, though. Good, solid men. Was the old woman with the shoe knife in the Bond movie a Bulgarian?