2019-02-20 04:13 KST  
Global Voices Online - The world is talking. Are you listening?
What Strings Attached to US Compensation?
[Diary of a Vengeance Foretold] Part 11 - July 13, 1988
Ludwig De Braeckeleer (ludwig)     Print Article 
Published 2008-07-14 04:10 (KST)   

Related Articles
The USS Vincennes 'Accident'
Tehran: 'The Blood of Our Martyrs Will Be Avenged'
Iran Supreme Leader Calls for Real War Against the US
Pentagon Begins Investigating Airliner Incident
American Flag Carriers Increase Security
Tehran Asserts Right to Revenge
Tehran Denies Discord in Response to Airliner Downing
Iran Refuses Ceasefire With Iraq
British Intel Reports Critical of US Shoot Down
US to Pay Iranian Families Compensation
Tehran Denounces the Downing as Criminal Act
US Diplomat Praises USS Vincennes Captain
Moscow Asks US to Pull Out of Gulf
The Lindauer Affidavit
Saddam Offers Peace to Tehran
Iran Accepts UN Resolution 598
Tariq Aziz: The War Must Go On
Mild Resolution Adopted Over USS Vincennes Incident
Iran and Iraq Reps to Meet With UN Secretary General
Khomeini Reluctantly Renounces War
Israel Fears Iran-Iraq Ceasefire
Tehran Denounces Iraqi Chemical Weapons Use
Rumors of High Level US-Iran Direct Talks
UN Secretary General Holds Talks With Iranian Foreign Minister
Baghdad Demands Direct Talks With Iranian Officials
Pentagon Investigators Return to the US
Saudis Urge Baghdad to Accept Ceasefire With Iran
July Intelligence Summary
US, Iran in Talks on American Hostages

Wednesday, July 13, 1988

"What's a life worth under international law? No one really knows."
--Richard B. Lillich, University of Virginia Law School

OMNI's New Approach to Citizen Journalism
[Opinion] Democracy's Downfall
Technology Can Save Money, Planet
[Opinion] Iran Defends Peaceful 'Right'
Couchsurfing in Gaza
Education for a Scientific Society
Negev 'Heritage Site' Vandalized
Voices After the Shots
Taliban Attacks Kabul Weeks Before Elections
Creeping Islamisation in Gaza?
According to a recent poll, three out of five Americans oppose compensation. Those sentiments are hardly surprising given Tehran's strained relations with the West, and the United States in particular. Few have forgotten the destruction of the US Embassy in Iran. And many have suspected that Tehran played a role in the murder of 241 US soldiers in Beirut.

In spite of significant public opposition, President Ronald Reagan has decided to pay compensation to families of those who died in the Iranian airliner mistakenly shot down by the USS Vincennes.

However, his decision, perceived by many former top officials as the correct one, is raising another issue that is dividing the very same officials: Should compensation be linked to other goals?

Representative Thomas Downey, a New York Democrat, wants the hostages released first. Senator Sam Nunn and former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger argue that payment should be linked to a ceasefire.

Unlike reparations, the idea of compensation does not imply guilt. Moreover, the payments would go directly to the families.

Upon completion, the investigation may reveal that Iran shares some of the blame. Yet, an American ship shot down the plane, and killed 290 civilians, including 66 children. To many observers, their families deserve compensation. They believe that no condition should be attached, regardless of nationality.

UN Debate Reported

A United Nations Security Council debate on the American downing of an Iranian passenger plane was postponed. According to some diplomats, Iran is having difficulty lining up support for a resolution condemning the US. A resolution merely condemning the downing may receive sufficient votes. The US, as a permanent member, could of course impose a veto. The debate was rescheduled for July 14.

Vernon A. Walters, the US representative at the UN, said that Vice President George H. W. Bush might present the US case in the Security Council debate.


Jamilla Mograbi [1], the spouse of terrorist Abu Talb, leaves Warsaw for Algeria. During the trial, Talb was asked to explain his wife's travels and whereabouts. Talb, in spite of the evidence presented to him, simply denied her presence in Warsaw.

Q: Well, the information which I have, and which will be corrected if I'm wrong, is that your wife exited Cyprus and flew to Arlanda, the airport for Sweden. Does that ring any bells in your mind?

A: I don't think so. I don't remember at all.

Q: Now, apparently, on the day that she arrived back in Sweden, which was the 11th of July, which was also the day she left Cyprus, she flew on from Arlanda to Warsaw using the same Swedish travel document. Can you help me with that?

A: Sir, allow me to tell you something. We are Arabs, and my wife cannot leave our home without my -- telling me. She simply cannot be anywhere else without my knowing it.

Q: I do want to know if you can help me with why someone would undertake a journey from Sweden to Cyprus, Cyprus back to Sweden, the same day traveling from the same airport to Warsaw, to stay there for two days and then to travel from Warsaw to Algeria to visit her sister. Why on earth would your wife undertake such a journey?
Talb never offered a sensible answer. He simply denied that his wife had ever visited Cyprus or Warsaw. This is not the last time that he will not be able to explain the acting of his wife.

Looking Back in the Mirror

On Oct. 30, 1989, US government officials announced that Mohamed Abu Talb, a Palestinian being held on terrorism charges in Sweden, had admitted to investigators that between October and December 1988, he retrieved and passed to another person a bomb that had been hidden in a West German building used by members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine General Command. He would later retract his confession, without any apparent reason.
1. See British Intel Reports Critical of US Shoot Down.


"For Iranians, Redress Without Strings," July 13, 1988.

"US Not Monitoring Air Traffic Control in the Persian Gulf," July 13, 1988.

"Debate on Airbus Postponed at U.N.," July 13, 1988.

"The Roots and the Rudiments of Compensation to Foreigners," July 13, 1988.
©2008 OhmyNews
Other articles by reporter Ludwig De Braeckeleer

Add to :  Add to Del.icio.usDel.icio.us |  Add to Digg this Digg  |  Add to reddit reddit |  Add to Y! MyWeb Y! MyWeb

Ronda Hauben
Netizens Question Cause of Cheonan Tragedy
Michael Werbowski
[Opinion] Democracy's Downfall
Michael Solis
Arizona's Immigration Bill and Korea
Yehonathan Tommer
Assassination in Dubai
[ESL/EFL Podcast] Saying No
Seventeenth in a series of English language lessons from Jennifer Lebedev...
  [ESL/EFL] Talking About Change
  [ESL/ EFL Podcast] Personal Finances
  [ESL/EFL] Buying and Selling
How worried are you about the H1N1 influenza virus?
  Very worried
  Somewhat worried
  Not yet
  Not at all
    * Vote to see the result.   
  copyright 1999 - 2019 ohmynews all rights reserved. internews@ohmynews.com Tel:+82-2-733-5505,5595(ext.125) Fax:+82-2-733-5011,5077