I admire what Scotland has done. I think their compassion has turned Mr. Megrahi into an emissary for civilization: a sword beaten into a plowshare. His return to Libya is proof that the country he attacked is morally superior to the one that sponsored his mission. And while this may not be apparent to the bused-in demonstrators at the Tripoli airport, we must believe that it will resonate in the consciences of civilized people everywhere else.
Post Script: Added Sunday, August 23.
Since writing the above two paragraphs, it's been revealed that influences other than compassion may have been at work. The Prime Minister and his predecessor had both been in discussion with Libya about a prisoner exchange, including Megrahi, and his release was advantageous for British Petroleum. There have been denials all around, but the fact remains that responsibility for foreign affairs rests with the central government, and undeniably, this has been a muddle. The high minded message that I praised has been lost, and we are again at stalemate with the Muslim world: their fanaticism vs. our venality.