February 11, 2008

Two CBS Journalists Kidnapped in Iraq

The return of kidnapping chic or just a series of unfortunate hostage takings right after another? Whatever the reason, sad news out of Iraq today where two CBS journalists have been kidnapped.

No word on the names of the journalists, but the pair were kidnapped in Basra. While CBS is careful not to point fingers, Basra means one thing: Shiite country.

Update by Vicki: (Via Dinah Lord) One of the kidnapped journalists has been unofficially identified as British photojournalist Richard Butler. The other is believed to be his Iraqi translator.

The good news: Shiite jihadis generally are under the influenced of Iran or of Iraqi Islamists like Muqtada al Sadr--both groups that are extremely sensitive to their public images and like to play nice with the press. If Shiite militia--even "rogue elements"--- took the journos hostage, there's a good chance they'll be released unharmed.

The bad news: A group of five security contractors was kidnapped near Basra in January of 2007 and are still missing despite a $150,000 reward to any one who can help secure the release of the hostages. If a criminal gang took the journalists hostage, God help them.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:57 PM | Comments |