Pan Am Flight 103
Pan Am Flight 103 was a scheduled Pan Am transatlantic flight from Frankfurt to Detroit via London and New York. On 21 December 1988, N739PA, the aircraft operating the transatlantic leg of the route was destroyed by a bomb, killing all 243 passengers and 16 crew – a disaster known as the Lockerbie bombing. Large sections of the aircraft crashed onto residential areas of Lockerbie, killing 11 people on the ground. With a total of 270 people killed, it was the deadliest terror attack in the history of the United Kingdom. Following a three-year joint investigation by Dumfries and Galloway Constabulary and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation, arrest warrants were issued for two Libyan nationals in November 1991. In 1999, Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi handed over the two men for trial at Camp Zeist, after protracted negotiations and UN sanctions. In 2001, Libyan intelligence officer Abdelbaset al-Megrahi was jailed for life after being found guilty of 270 counts of murder in connection with the bombing.
In August 2009, he was released by the Scottish Government on compassionate grounds after being diagnosed with prostate cancer. He died in May 2012 as the only person to be convicted for the attack. In 2003, Gaddafi accepted responsibility for the Lockerbie bombing and paid compensation to the families of the victims, although he maintained that he had never given the order for the attack. Acceptance of responsibility was part of a series of requirements laid out by a UN resolution in order for sanctions against Libya to be lifted. Libya said it had to accept responsibility because a Libyan agent, Abdelbaset Ali Mohammed al-Megrahi, convicted in 2000 of planting the bomb, was a government employee. During the Libyan Civil War in 2011, former Minister of Justice Mustafa Abdul Jalil claimed that the Libyan leader had ordered the bombing, though this was denied. Investigators have long believed that Abdelbaset al-Megrahi did not act alone and have been reported as questioning retired Stasi agents about their possible role in the attack.
Some critics of Megrahi’s prosecution believe that the Lockerbie bombing was carried out by Palestinian terrorists on behalf of Iran, in retaliation for the US downing of an Iranian passenger jet in 1988. Some relatives of the dead, including the Lockerbie campaigner Dr Jim Swire, believe the bomb was planted at Heathrow airport and not sent via feeder flights from Malta, as the US and UK claim. A cell belonging to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine had been operating in West Germany in the months before the Pan Am bombing; the aircraft operating Pan Am Flight 103 was a Boeing 747–121, registered N739PA and named Clipper Maid of the Seas. It was the 15th 747 built, was delivered in February 1970, one month after the first 747 entered service with Pan Am. In 1978, as Clipper Morning Light, it had appeared in "Conquering the Atlantic", the fourth episode of the BBC Television documentary series Diamonds in the Sky, presented by Julian Pettifer; the Clipper Maid of the Seas operated the transatlantic leg of Flight 103, which had originated at Frankfurt Airport, West Germany, on a Boeing 727.
Both Pan Am and TWA changed the type of aircraft operating different legs of a flight. PA103 was bookable as a single Frankfurt-New York itinerary, though a scheduled change of aircraft took place in London. At London Heathrow Airport and their luggage on the feeder flight transferred directly onto the Boeing 747, along with unaccompanied interline luggage; the aircraft pushed back from the terminal at 18:04 and took off from runway 27R at 18:25, en route for New York JFK Airport and on to Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport. Contrary to many popular accounts of the disaster, the flight, which had a scheduled gate departure time of 18:00, left Heathrow airport on time. After the bombing, the flight number was changed, in accordance with standard practice among airlines after disasters. Within days, the Frankfurt-London-New York-Detroit route was being served by Pan Am Flight 3. At 18:58, the aircraft established two-way radio contact with Shanwick Oceanic Area Control in Prestwick on frequency 123.95 MHz.
The Clipper Maid of the Seas approached the corner of the Solway Firth at 19:01, crossed the coast at 19:02 UTC. On scope, the aircraft showed transponder code, or "squawk", 0357 and flight level 310. At this point, the Clipper Maid of the Seas was flying at 31,000 feet on a heading of 316 degrees magnetic, at a speed of 313 kn calibrated airspeed. Subsequent analysis of the radar returns by RSRE concluded that the aircraft was tracking 321° and travelling at a ground speed of 803 km/h. At 19:02:44, the clearance delivery officer at Shanwick transmitted its oceanic route clearance; the aircraft did not acknowledge this message. The Clipper Maid of the Seas' "squawk" flickered off. Air Traffic Control tried to make contact with the flight, with no response. At this time a loud sound was recorded on the cockpit voice recorder at 19:02:50. Five radar echoes fanning out appeared, instead of one. Comparison of the cockpit voice recorder to the radar returns showed that, eight seconds after the explosion, the wreckage had a 1-nautical-mile spread.
A British Airways pilot, flying the London–Glasgow shuttle near Carlisle, called Scottish authorities to report that he could see a huge fire on the ground. The explosion punched a 50-cm hole on the left side of the fuselage. Investigators from the US Federal Aviation Administration concluded that no emergency procedures had been started in the cockpit; the cockpit voice recorder, located in the tail section of the aircraft, was found
Jean-Louis Bruguière was the leading French investigating magistrate in charge of counter-terrorism affairs. He was appointed in 2004 vice-president of the Paris Court of Serious Claims, he has garnered controversy for various acts, including the indictment of Rwandan president Paul Kagame for the assassination in 1994 of Juvenal Habyarimana. Washington Post journalist Dana Priest has cited him as saying that he had in the past ordered the arrest of more than 500 suspects, some with the assistance of US authorities. According to the investigative reporter, who described the workings of Alliance Base, a CTIC joint counter-terrorist operations center, involving the DGSE, the CIA and other foreign intelligence agencies, Bruguière declared that " good connections with the CIA and FBI." Bruguière has since temporarily left his judicial functions to dedicate himself to politics, joining Nicolas Sarkozy's Union for a Popular Movement conservative party. However, he was appointed by the European Union at the US Department of Treasury to oversee the Terrorist Finance Tracking Program.
The latest in a long line of magistrates, Bruguière studied at the Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Paris and took part in the May 1968 protests. He continued his education at the École Nationale de la Magistrature. Appointed to Évreux, he made himself known through an affair involving illegal vehicle registration cards by naming the police director as the culprit. Appointed to Paris in 1976, he began an attack on local pimps having to work under police protection. In 1982 Bruguière declared accused Japanese cannibal Issei Sagawa unfit to stand trial by reason of insanity and Sagawa was extradited from France to Japan where he was released. Following street gunfire in 1982, Bruguière turned himself towards anti-terrorism, expanding his network and targeting in particular the far-left group Action Directe. In 1986 an anti-terrorism division was formed in Paris. A year his apartment was targeted in a grenade attack. In 1994, he captured one of the world's most wanted terrorists, Carlos, his biggest case was that of UTA Flight 772, sabotaged over the Sahara Desert in 1989 with the loss of 170 lives.
Bruguière was instrumental in having six Libyans convicted in absentia. However, in the 2001 book Manipulations Africaines, he was accused by the French journalist Pierre Péan of having deliberately ignored evidence pointing to Lebanon and Iran in order to put the blame on Libya. Bruguière counselled Italian senator Paolo Guzzanti, in charge of the Mitrokhin Commission, endorsing the old thesis, once supported by the CIA, according to which the Soviet Union was behind Mehmet Ali Agca's 1981 assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II; the Mitrokhin Commission has been discredited following a manipulation by a network to defame Prime minister Romano Prodi and other political opponents of Berlusconi, by claiming they worked for the KGB. The network included Mario Scaramella, arrested in December 2006, the head of SISMI Nicolò Pollari, n°2 of SISMI Marco Mancini, as well as Robert Seldon Lady, CIA station chief in Milan indicted in the Imam Rapito affair, he was called as a witness in May 2007 by the defendants of a trial involving members suspected to have provided logistical support to the Moroccan Islamic Combatant Group, involved in the 2003 Casablanca bombings.
He had been in charge of the investigations concerning this case, the defendants' lawyer questioned his methods. He sits on the Board of Advisors of the Chertoff Group, headed by Michael Chertoff, his controversial report into the April 1994 assassination of then-Rwandan President, Juvénal Habyarimana and his counterpart Cyprien Ntaryamira of Burundi, was made public on 17 November 2006. Brugière has indicted Paul Kagame, current President of Rwanda and leader of the FPR, claiming that Kagame assassinated Habyarimana to provoke the genocide against his own ethnic group, in order to take power. Bruguière's thesis has both been controversial and criticised by Le Figaro, Libération and other newspapers, his investigations are based on two oral sources, Abdul Ruzibiza, a former member of the Rwandan Patriotic Front who lives in exile, Paul Barril, in charge of François Mitterrand's wiretap section at the Elysee Palace and had an obscure role in Rwanda before 1994. Le Figaro points the international dimension of the character and his contacts with intelligence agents, both in Russia and in the United States, cited justice colleagues of Bruguière, who criticize him for "favourizing the raison d'état over the law."
Bruguière left his civil function as a magistrate and provided his support, in March 2007, to the right-wing candidate Nicolas Sarkozy for the presidential election. He presented himself as candidate under the joint appellation Union for a Popular Majority -Parti Radical Valoisien, in the third circonscription of the Lot-et-Garonne department, for the June 2007 legislative elections. Bruguière was defeated by his Socialist competitor, Jérôme Cahuzac, gaining only 41,71% at the second round against 52,29% for Cahuzac. In late May 2017, Bruguière was appointed a member of the independent external investigation body to look into allegations of corruption within the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. Officer of the National Order of the Legion of Honour Commander of the National Merit Silver Medal of the Spanish Guardia Civil Dialogo prize Jean-Louis Bruguière Les voies de la Terreur, Fayard 2016 isbn 978-2-213-6822
The Scotsman is a Scottish compact newspaper and daily news website headquartered in Edinburgh. First established as a radical political paper in 1817, it began daily publication in 1855 and remained a broadsheet until August 2004, its parent company, JPIMedia publishes the Edinburgh Evening News. As of February 2017, it had an audited print circulation of 19,449, with a paid-for circulation of 88.3% of this figure, about 17,000. Its website, Scotsman.com, had an average of 138,000 unique visitors a day as of 2017. The title celebrated its bicentenary on 25 January 2017; the Scotsman was launched in 1817 as a liberal weekly newspaper by lawyer William Ritchie and customs official Charles Maclaren in response to the "unblushing subservience" of competing newspapers to the Edinburgh establishment. The paper was pledged to "impartiality and independence". After the abolition of newspaper stamp tax in Scotland in 1855, The Scotsman was relaunched as a daily newspaper priced at 1d and a circulation of 6,000 copies.
The fledgling paper was based at 257 High Street on the Royal Mile. In 1860, The Scotsman obtained a purpose built office on Cockburn Street in Edinburgh designed in the Scots baronial style by the architects Peddie & Kinnear; this backed onto their original offices on the Royal Mile. The building bears the initials "JR" for John Ritchie the founder of the company. On 19 December 1904, they moved to huge new offices at the top of the street, facing onto North Bridge, designed by Dunn & Findlay; this huge building had taken three years to build and had connected printworks on Market Street. The printworks connected below road level direct to Waverley station in a efficient production line. In 1953 the newspaper was bought by Canadian millionaire Roy Thomson, in the process of building a large media group; the paper was bought in 1995 by Frederick Barclay for £ 85 million. They moved the newspaper from its Edinburgh office on North Bridge, now an upmarket hotel, to modern offices in Holyrood Road designed by Edinburgh architects CDA, near the subsequent location of the Scottish Parliament Building.
The daily was awarded by the Society for News Design the World’s Best Designed Newspaper™ for 1994. In December 2005, The Scotsman along with its sister titles owned by The Scotsman Publications Ltd was acquired, in a £160 million deal, by Johnston Press, a company founded in Scotland and at the time one of the top three largest local newspaper publishers in the UK. Ian Stewart has been the editor since June 2012, after a reshuffle of senior management in April 2012 during which John McLellan, the paper's editor-in-chief was dismissed. Ian Stewart was editor of Edinburgh Evening News and remains as the editor of Scotland on Sunday. In 2012, The Scotsman was named Newspaper of the Year at the Scottish Press Awards. In 2006 Barclay Brothers sold Barclay House to Irish property magnate Lochlann Quinn, in 2013 Scottish video games maker Rockstar North, of Grand Theft Auto fame, signed the lease, causing Johnston Press group to move out in June 2014. Johnston Press have downsized to refurbished premises at Orchard Brae House in Queensferry Road, Edinburgh, a move, quoted as saving the group £1million per annum in rent.
The newspaper backed a'No' vote in the referendum on Scottish independence. In November 2018, Johnston Press filed for administration. Shortly after filing for administration, the company was bought out by JPIMedia. 1817: William Ritchie 1817: Charles Maclaren 1818: John Ramsay McCulloch 1843: John Hill Burton 1846: Alexander Russel 1876: Robert Wallace 1880: Charles Alfred Cooper 1905: John Pettigrew Croal 1924: George A. Waters 1944: James Murray Watson 1955: John Buchanan 1956: Alastair Dunnett 1972: Eric MacKay 1985: Chris Baur 1988: Magnus Linklater 1994: Andrew Jaspan 1995: James Seaton 1997: Martin Clarke 1998: Alan Ruddock 2000: Tim Luckhurst 2000: Rebecca Hardy 2001: Iain Martin 2004: John McGurk 2006: Mike Gilson 2009: John McLellan 2012: Ian StewartSource: The Scotsman Digital Archive In 1998 The Scotsman was among the first UK newspapers to launch a website updated on a daily basis. Scotsman.com has since grown to become the second biggest newspaper website in Scotland in terms of readership, behind the Daily Record.
As well as reproducing articles from the day's paper, it features online features and video content exclusive to the site. List of newspapers in Scotland List of newspapers by date Merrill, John C. and Harold A. Fisher; the world's great dailies: profiles of fifty newspapers pp 273–79 Official website The Scotsman Digital Archive 1817-1950 Johnston Press Comprehensive Design Architects
Hans Köchler's Lockerbie trial observer mission
Hans Köchler's Lockerbie trial observer mission stemmed from the dispute between the United Kingdom, the United States, Libya concerning arrangements for the trial of two Libyans accused of causing the explosion of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie on 21 December 1988. The dispute was resolved on the basis of binding United Nations Security Council Resolution 1192 of 27 August 1998. UN Security Council resolution 1192 "welcomed" "the initiative for the trial of the two persons charged with the bombing of Pan Am flight 103... before a Scottish court sitting in the Netherlands" and "invited" the Secretary-General of the United Nations "to nominate international observers to attend the trial". By a letter dated 28 October 1997, the Permanent Representative of the United Kingdom had informed the Secretary-General "that the United Kingdom would welcome the presence of international observers from the United Nations at the trial of the suspects in the Lockerbie bombing". At a UN press conference on 5 April 1999, Secretary-General Kofi Annan, in reply to a journalist's question, said: "Well, there are provisions for international observers, this is something that we will need to work out.
There have been suggestions that there could be international observers from various organizations, from the Arab League, from the OAU, from NAM and all that. But we are going to coordinate that and make sure that there is an effective international presence during the trial, to monitor... "In a letter dated 25 April 2000, addressed to the President of the Security Council, Secretary-General Kofi Annan nominated five international observers, one each from the European Union, the League of Arab States, jointly from the Organization of African Unity and the Non-Aligned Movement, two from the International Progress Organization, a Vienna-based NGO in consultative status with the United Nations, among them the organisation's President, Hans Köchler, Professor at the University of Innsbruck, Austria. Hans Köchler was the only international observer to submit comprehensive reports on the Lockerbie trial and appeal proceedings to the Secretary-General of the United Nations who, in turn, forwarded them to the Registrar of the Scottish Court in the Netherlands.
Köchler's reports were critical of the proceedings and challenged the fairness and impartiality of the High Court of Justiciary. Their publication triggered a large-scale international debate, including in the British House of Commons, about the politicisation of criminal trials in the context of power politics. Köchler had characterised the initial trial verdict of 31 January 2001 as "inconsistent" and "arbitrary". On the day of the announcement of the appeal verdict he described the dismissal of the convicted Libyan national's appeal as a "spectacular miscarriage of justice". Upon publication on 28 June 2007 of a summary of a report by the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission, which took four years to review Abdelbaset al-Megrahi's case and granted him leave for a second appeal against conviction, Köchler issued a statement in which he expressed surprise at the Commission's focus and apparent bias in favour of the judicial establishment in Scotland: "In giving exoneration to the police and forensic staff, I think they show their lack of independence.
No officials to be blamed: a Maltese shopkeeper."He called for the full report of the SCCRC to be published, for a full and independent public inquiry into the Lockerbie bombing case and for the proceedings of the Court of Criminal Appeal to be witnessed by international observers. On 4 July 2007, Köchler wrote to Scottish first minister, Alex Salmond, British foreign secretary, David Miliband, home secretary, Jacqui Smith and minister for Africa and the UN, Mark Malloch Brown, reiterating his call for a public inquiry into the Lockerbie case and insisting that UN-appointed legal experts should be involved in such an inquiry. In the June 2008 edition of the Scottish lawyers' magazine The Firm, Köchler referred to the'totalitarian' nature of the second Lockerbie appeal process saying it "bears the hallmarks of an'intelligence operation'." Köchler's reports as UN-appointed international observer of one of the most controversial criminal trials in British history have led to a global debate on the role of NGO observers in the context of international criminal justice.
Through his novel and pro-active interpretation of his assignment as UN-appointed "international observer", he has redefined the role of observers in the context of international criminal justice. His reports have been published as landmark documents of international law in collections such as that of the Peace Palace Library of the International Court of Justice, his experience as observer of the Lockerbie trial led him to write the book Global Justice or Global Revenge? in which he describes the challenges faced by international criminal justice under the conditions of power politics and draws general conclusions in terms of the doctrine of international law. In September 2008, following a meeting organised by the Lockerbie Justice Group at Greshornish House on the Isle of Skye, Köchler and Professor Robert Black called for a new public inquiry into the Lockerbie bombing. Köchler said:"Irrespective of the outcome of the current appeal, there should be a reinvestigation of the incident by the Scottish authorities.
It is frustrating that with regard to such an incident just one person has been presented as the culprit and no further questions asked. Only a child would believe such a story." During Köchler's visit to Scotland, he met former MP and Lockerbie activist Tam Dalyell, MSP Alex Neil and Iain McKie, father of Scottish policewoma
Edinburgh Law School
Edinburgh Law School, founded in 1707, is a school within the University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom dedicated to research and teaching in law. It is located in the original site of the University. Two of the twelve sitting Supreme Court of the United Kingdom justices are graduates of Edinburgh. In 2014, the Research Excellence Framework commissioned by the UK government, ranked the University of Edinburgh 1st in Scotland and 4th in the UK; the 2019 league table rankings from The Guardian placed Edinburgh at twenty-fifth in the UK. The 2019 Complete University Guide league rankings placed Edinburgh at 10th in the UK; the 2018 The Times league rankings placed Edinburgh at 11th in the UK. In 1707, the year of the unification of the Kingdoms of Scotland and England into the Kingdom of Great Britain, Queen Anne established the Chair of Public Law and the Law of Nature and Nations in the University of Edinburgh, to which Charles Erskine was appointed. By 1722 the University had four Professors of Law, classes—in Civil Law, Scots Law and History—were given in their respective homes or offices.
Numbers grew with the expansion of the legal profession in the 19th century, by 1830 there were over 200 students attending the Scots Law class alone. Scholarship amongst the academics at Edinburgh continued to grow in reputation, with the work of Muirhead and Rankine achieving international renown; the Faculty of Law had moved to Old College, built in 1789, in 1862 the new degree of LL. B. was introduced, following the Universities Act 1858. The degree was only open to graduates those who had studied for the M. A. at a Scottish University or the B. A. at Oxford or Cambridge. Students of the LL. B. had to attend courses and be examined in Civil Law, Public law, Constitutional law and History, Medical Jurisprudence. In 1909 Eveline MacLaren and Josephine Gordon Stuart became Scotland's first two female law graduates when they each obtained an LL. B degree from Edinburgh. By 1966, the LL. B. had become a full-time undergraduate course, although many would continue to study for an Arts degree beforehand.
In 1981, Edinburgh first offered the Diploma in Legal Practice, for LL. B. Students wishing to enter the legal profession. Today, the School of Law is associated both with traditional Scots law and with innovation across a wide range of subjects; the School retains a reputation for scholarship in topics such as Roman Law but is known as a centre for research in topics such as European law, commercial law, intellectual property and information technology law, labour law, European private law, medical law and ethics, international law, comparative law, human rights law. In 2007 the School celebrated its Tercentenary year, marked by a series of events and of lectures by world-renowned legal experts. Throughout its history the School of Law has accommodated some of the leading legal scholars in Europe. James Muirhead's work on Roman Law garnered international praise, Professor Erskine's Principles became a standard text in Scots Law, as did those of Professor George Joseph Bell. In the 20th-century, the eminent legal theorist Professor Sir Neil MacCormick wrote his seminal texts on legal philosophy as Regius Professor at Edinburgh.
Current members of Edinburgh Law School include current Regius Professor Neil Walker. Students of the School of Law are represented by the Law Students' Council; the University of Edinburgh Law Society, known as LawSoc, provides a programme of social events. In addition, there is a Postgraduate Students' Research Committee for doctoral level students, as well as a Graduate Law Students' Society; the University Mooting Society is active, with two internal competitions and several external competitions running during each academic session, giving students the opportunity to develop the skills of oral legal argument. For graduate-level students there are a number of subject-specific discussion groups which meet on a regular basis. Since 2008, the students have published the Edinburgh Student Law Review; the Centre for Law and Society The Centre for Legal History "SCRIPT" The Edinburgh Centre for Private Law The Europa Institute The Scottish Centre for International Law The Joseph Bell Centre for Forensic Statistics and Legal Reasoning, joint research collaboration with Glasgow Caledonian University The Edinburgh Study of Youth Transitions and Crime The Centre for Commercial Law, Chaired by The Rt Hon. Lord Reed Notable alumni of Edinburgh Law School include: Douglas Alexander MP, former Secretary of State for International Development Michael Ancram QC, Marquess of Lothian, former MP and Chairman of the Conservative Party Henry Brougham, Lord Chancellor of Great Britain, co-founder of the University College London Joanna Cherry, current Scottish National Party MP for Edinburgh South-West James Clyde, Baron Clyde, Lord of Appeal in Ordinary George Combe, founder of the Edinburgh Phrenological Society William Cullen, Baron Culle
Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts
Fellowship of the Royal Society of Arts is an award granted to individuals that the Royal Society of Arts judges to have made outstanding achievements to social progress and development. In the official language of the Fellowship Charter, the award recognizes the contributions of exceptional individuals from across the world who have made significant contributions relating to the Arts and Commerce. Fellowship is only awarded to those who can demonstrate that they have made significant contributions to social change, support the mission of the RSA. Fellows of the RSA are entitled to use the post-nominal letters FRSA. Fellows of the Royal Society of the Arts are entitled to use of the RSA Library and premises in central London. Past and current fellows include leading artists, writers and former politicians who have made significant contributions to their fields. Previous Fellows have included Stephen Hawking, Charles Dickens, Karl Marx, Benjamin Franklin, Nelson Mandela; the Royal Society of the Arts is based near the centre of London, England.
The Royal Society of the Arts was founded in 1754 by William Shipley as the Society for the Encouragement of Arts and Commerce, it was granted a Royal Charter in 1847, the right to use the term Royal in its name by King Edward VII in 1908. The shorter version, The Royal Society of Arts and the related RSA acronym, are used more than the full name. In addition to the Fellowship, the RSA awards three medals, the Albert Medal, the Benjamin Franklin Medal and the Bicentenary Medal. Medal winners include Nelson Mandela, Sir Frank Whittle, Cambridge Professor Stephen Hawking. Since 1754, the RSA Fellowship has been a community of leaders in the fields of art, literature and business who have made significant contributions to society or the arts, are able to support the mission of the RSA. New fellows are selected by the nomination of an existing fellow or by a request for fellowship, which must be supported by two current references; those seeking to join the Fellowship must outline: Why they wish to join the RSA How they expect to engage with the RSA How aligned they are to the RSA Fellowship CharterAfter the nomination of a candidate has been received, an admissions panel will make the final decision to accept or decline a new fellow.
Examples of current fellows, who come from diverse backgrounds and professions, include Tim Berners-Lee, Judi Dench, Alex James, Benson Taylor, Gareth Malone. Previous Fellows have included Stephen Hawking, Marie Curie, Charles Dickens, Benjamin Franklin and Karl Marx. A partial List of Fellows of the Royal Society of Arts gives more examples
Pierre Péan is a French investigative journalist and author of many books concerned with political scandals. In 1983 Pierre Péan was the first to break the story of the Great Oil Sniffer Hoax in Le Canard enchaîné. In his 1990 book L'Homme de l'ombre, Péan went into great detail about Jacques Foccart, Charles de Gaulle's adviser on African matters, describing him as a man of mystery and yet the most powerful person in the Fifth Republic; as a result of Péan's revelations, Foccart unsuccessfully sued for libel. In 1994, he published; the book is a biography covering the life of François Mitterrand from 1934 to 1947. It became a best-seller, started a controversy over the ambiguous behaviour of Mitterrand with respect to both Marshal Philippe Pétain and the French Resistance during the occupation of France by Germany. Péan himself was unhappy about the press coverage of certain aspects of the book and considered the interpretations of some commentators to be unfair to Mitterrand. In Manipulations Africaines, published in February 2001, Péan investigated the sabotage of UTA Flight 772.
He alleged that evidence pointed to Iran and Syria, but that due to political context and the United States tried to put the blame on Libya. He accuses judge Jean-Louis Bruguière of deliberately neglecting proof of Lebanon and Iran being involved to pursue only the Libyan trail, he accused Thomas Thurman, a Federal Bureau of Investigation explosives expert, of fabricating false evidence against Libya in both the Pan Am Flight 103 and UTA Flight 772 sabotages. In 2003, Péan published; the book criticised the French newspaper's editors, claiming that they had purposefully turned their backs on Le Monde's past ethics. In particular, they alleged that Jean-Marie Colombani and Edwy Plenel had, amongst other things, shown partisan bias and engaged in financial dealings that compromised the paper's independence; these findings remain controversial, but attracted much attention in France and around the world at the time of their publication, not least because they impugned the analytical reliability of a paper whose emphasis is on analysis and not straight reporting.
Le Monde's subsequent difficulties have been attributed in part to this book. In 2005, he published Noires fureurs, blancs menteurs. Rwanda, 1990-1994 about the Rwandan genocide; this controversial book was an explicit attack on François-Xavier Verschave's work concerning "Françafrique", a term connoting the specific kind of neocolonialism imposed by Charles de Gaulle and successive presidents of the Fifth Republic on the former African colonies of the French colonial empire. In his book, Péan defends the attitude of the French government during the Rwanda crisis, he accuses the FPR and Paul Kagame of being responsible for the assassination of Juvénal Habyarimana. The fact that he alleged the existence of a "counter-genocide" sparked critics of his book as a revisionist attempt to alter the accepted history of the Rwanda genocide with a false comparison. In 2008, Pierre Péan wrote The World According to K, another controversial book, on the supposed ties between Bernard Kouchner - French foreign minister - and African dictators.
Péan claimed two consultancies run by associates of Kouchner were paid nearly $6m by the governments of Gabon and Congo for reports that were written by him. According to Péan, some of this money was paid by the two African governments after Kouchner became foreign minister in May 2007. Kouchner denied the accusations of conflict of interest, blaming the allegations on "circles" who hated him and pointing to differences with Péan over who should be blamed for the Rwandan genocide. Bernard Kouchner countered by accusing Pierre Péan of antisemitism, provoking a scandal in French press; this book is not only about Africa, but about Kosovo, how Kouchner used to behave there when he was United Nations delegate. Kouchner never answered about the facts Péan revealed in his book, preferred to keep silent. In September 2008, Pierre Péan was put on trial in Paris accused of inciting racial hatred in a book on the Rwandan genocide. Péan wrote that the Tutsis had a culture of lies and deceit, it had somehow spread to the Hutus.
He said it made investigating Rwanda "an impossible task". Some 800,000 Rwandan Tutsis and moderate Hutus were slaughtered in 1994. A French rights group, SOS Racisme, filed the lawsuit against Péan in October 2006 and was backed by the public prosecutor; the case related to four pages in Péan's book "Noires Fureurs, Blancs Menteurs", published in 2005. The trial took place from 23 to 25 September 2008. Among the witnesses testifying on Péan's behalf were two former French government ministers: the socialist Hubert Védrine and the rightist Bernard Debré. Giving evidence, Pierre Péan complained that for three years he had been under a cloud: "At best, I was treated as a racist. On the second day of the trial, Péan burst into tears when a former leader of the French Union of Jewish Students compared his book to Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf. A survivor of the Rwandan genocide, psychotherapist Esther Mujawo-Keiner, accused him of "playing with words that can kill", to which Péan, without apologising for the words that he used, replied: "I bow down in front of the suffering of the victims."
In November 2008, when the case against Péan was dismissed, his lawyer said the verdict was