http://www.nytimes.com/2014/11/19/wo...ml?ref=us&_r=0The Obama administration confirmed on Tuesday that it was reviewing its policy on securing the release of United States citizens taken hostage abroad, but that the ban on paying ransom would not change.
Word of the review, disclosed by an under secretary of defense in a letter to a Republican lawmaker, came as the administration was grappling with a series of beheadings of American captives by the Islamic State militant group, which posted a video Sunday announcing the third such killing.
Some family members of hostages have criticized what they see as an unacceptable refusal by the administration to grant concessions, including ransom payments, to hostage-takers.
Unlike European governments, which have paid many millions of dollars in ransom to win the release of citizens held by the Islamic State or other militant groups, the United States has said it will never pay money to rescue its citizens. It has also privately pressed other governments not to pay.
I just donít understand that. Yes, thereís an official position of the government. All right, the government doesnít care about its citizens getting in trouble abroad. Itís not going to pay ransom, itís not going to rescue them, no matter how important or useful for the country they are or might be. Itís the official position and it can be understood (even if it doesnít work, and the number or kidnappings still increases while this policy was supposed to do the opposite).
But I donít understand why the hell the government imposes its position in the families of the hostages and tries to influence other countries to make them act the same. Why does the government think it has the right to intervene in the private affairs of other people and other countries? What might happen if other countries start doing the same? Nothing good, I suppose.
And the third thing I donít understand is why there are exceptions from this policy. Why was it possible to exchange Bergdahl for five talib leaders? Now these people are in charge of ISIS. What is the justification of this hypocritical action? I donít see any.