- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 22, 2010

Though I was sickened when Scotland released convicted Pan Am bomber Abdel Baset al-Megrahi from prison last year on humanitarian grounds after he served only eight years of a life sentence, I think Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is wasting her time trying to get him back into custody (“Afghanistan tops visit agenda,” Politics, Tuesday). The likelihood of the Libyans surrendering him are nil.

Initially, doctors said al-Megrahi had three months to live. Now they say he could live another decade. This shows the danger of releasing criminals on medical grounds, as predicting how long someone may live with a disease is not an exact science.Who knows - maybe even his medical reports were fabricated to help get him released early.

Hopefully, countries will learn from this experience and in the future be more reluctant to release a prisoner prematurely on medical grounds.

KENNETH L. ZIMMERMAN

Huntington Beach, Calif.