[ Professor Karol] Sikora, one of three experts who assessed al-Megrahi's health for Libyan authorities, was quoted by Britain's Observer newspaper Sunday as saying he should have been more cautious about the chances of survival.
"If I could go back in time, I would have probably been more vague and tried to emphasize the statistical chances and not hard fact," Sikora was quoted as saying.
"In medicine we say 'Never say never and never say always,' because funny things happen. All you can do is give a statistical opinion," said Sikora, dean of the School of Medicine at Buckingham University, in central England.
The "death's door" medical opinion appears in medical wrongful death cases, wherein the accused defendants will argue that the deceased was not going to live long anyway, thereby attenuating damages. It's a game, and always will be.
As to Al-Megrahi, there has been a suggestion of BP involvement as to oil matters with Libya. AP wrote:
"This is an added kick in the face and another example of them throwing rocks in the face of the families," Cohen said Sunday [15 Aug 2010]. "This whole thing is about business interests, money and making profits," she said, referring to allegations that oil giant BP pressured Scotland to free al-Megrahi so it could win access to Libyan oil reserves.
MacAskill has denied BP had any role in the release of al-Megrahi. Former BP chief executive John Browne, who stepped down in 2007, said Saturday he held two meetings with Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi but never discussed the release of prisoners.
BP has acknowledged that it lobbied the U.K. government as Britain and Libya were negotiating a prisoner transfer agreement — known as a PTA — in autumn 2007, but said it had not raised al-Megrahi's case. Al-Megrahi was not released under the deal, as he was freed on compassionate grounds rather than transferred to serve out his sentence.
One might reflect on the plotline in the James Bond movie "Quantum of Solace," wherein the drive for oil motivates the CIA (and the British government) to look the other way in dealing with a nasty character, Dominic Greene, a purported world-renowned developer of green technology.