Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) “released the following statement urging President Obama in his remarks to the country tonight to remind Americans about Muammar Qaddafi’s role in ordering the bombing of Pan Am 103 in 1988,” according to a press release.
Qaddafi not only ordered the attack that killed 270 innocent travelers on Pan Am 103, but also worked to swap lucrative oil deals in exchange for the release of the bomber convicted of the crime. Menendez is the author of the Senate resolution condemning Qaddafi’s brutality, calling for a no-fly zone, and urging an investigation into Qaddafi’s possible crimes against humanity.
Senator Menendez said, “Qaddafi is a terrorist – the moral equivalent of Osama bin Laden – a man who ordered the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103, which killed 270, including 34 New Jerseyans, and who in 2009 swapped a lucrative oil deal in exchange for the release of the convicted Pan Am bomber. A man President Ronald Reagan referred to as ‘this mad dog of the Middle East’ because of his relentless instigation of and support for terrorism. A man who has trained terrorists in North Africa and has proven that his reign of terror extends well beyond his own national and regional borders. A man who referred to the 1985 slaughter of innocent travelers, including an eleven-year-old American child, by terrorists at the Rome and Vienna airports as a ‘noble act.’ There is no question that, if given the chance, Qaddafi will continue to support terrorism and, therefore, continue to threaten Americans at home and abroad. That is why a Libyan no fly zone is not only in the interest of the international community, but is also in the national security interest of the United States.”
Menendez is a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
(h/t – Greg Sargent)