Sunday, March 06, 2005

Questions about the Kidnapped Italian Journalist

American troops firing on the car that was taking her to the airport killed one of the Italian agents in the car. She wonders aloud if it was an accident:
My Way News (AP): "Sgrena, who works for the communist daily Il Manifesto, did not rule out that she was targeted, saying the United States likely disapproved of Italy's methods to secure her release, although she did not elaborate.

'The fact that the Americans don't want negotiations to free the hostages is known,' Sgrena told Sky TG24 television by telephone, her voice hoarse and shaky. 'The fact that they do everything to prevent the adoption of this practice to save the lives of people held hostages, everybody knows that. So I don't see why I should rule out that I could have been the target.'"
Well, one enormous reason to rule it out is that she's still alive. It's not as if some other army swept in and stopped the Americans from killing her. Obviously, if the US troops at the checkpoint really wanted her dead, she would be dead.
"Italian officials have not provided details about the negotiations leading to Sgrena's release Friday after a month in captivity, but Agriculture Minister Giovanni Alemanno was quoted as saying it was 'very likely' a ransom was paid. U.S. officials object to ransoms, saying it encourages further kidnappings."
How many more people will be kidnapped or killed using the ransom money paid to get her released?
"Suddenly, she said, she remembered her captors' words, when they warned her 'to be careful because the Americans don't want you to return.'

Sgrena wrote that her captors warned her as she was about to be released not to signal her presence to anyone, because 'the Americans might intervene.' She said her captors blindfolded her and drove her to a location where she was turned over to agents and they set off for the airport."
It's heartwarming to see the concern her former "hosts" have for her. How wise they were to realize the Americans might try to kill her before she could get out of Iraq and do... what exactly?

UPDATE: The Italian press is asking the same kinds of things. Little Green Footballs has the story.

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