January 18, 2006
said on Thursday U.S. forces planned to release six Iraqi woman
detainees, a demand of the kidnappers of an American journalist, but
Washington denied such a move was imminent.
Aljazeera (Reuters) is reporting: An
Iraqi government official said Iraq has recommended that US authorities
release six of the eight Iraqi females in military custody, adding that
it was not part of a bid to free a kidnapped American journalist.
has been about 24 hours since Aljazeera ran video of Jill Carroll at
the hands of her captors who demanded all Iraqi female detainees be
If there demands are not met within 72 hours, Ms. Carroll would be killed, they said.
has been 11 days since I first saw the story of her kidnapping. And
yet, I stayed away from the story. What could I possibly say?
That this was a dishonorable crime? That it belied all the teachings of Islam? That it didn't make sense?
It doesn't make sense. From what I have heard among Iraqis I speak with
regularly and from statements made by prominent figures, Ms. Carroll
was seen as someone who had come to uncover the truth in Iraq. About
the price Iraqis were paying.
About human rights violations committed against the Iraqi people.
to Harith al-Dhari, a leading Sunni cleric of the Association of Muslim
Scholars, Iraqis (or some of them) viewed Ms. Carroll as
Why would the Iraqi resistance go after someone who seemed to be showing her readers a different side of the Iraq invasion?
Talking to Al-Sharqiya local television in Baghdad, al-Dhari said:
the recent kidnapping of the American journalist [Jill Carroll] ...
This journalist is one of the anti-occupation journalists. Indeed, she
wrote many articles that explain the negative signs of the occupation.
Also, in a recent story, she focused on the violations performed by
government security forces against civilians."
possible] that the occupiers might not be far removed from
responsibility for this event. But if it was done by some
anti-occupation forces then this is a message from us to make them
understand the situation and release her in order to allow her to go
back to work and participate in uncovering the real reasons for the
American occupation in Iraq and the violations against its people."
seems to be either placing blame for her kidnapping on occupation
forces or on "some anti-occupation force". I think his message was to
the latter, perhaps some group which may have committed a blunder it
finds itself stuck with now.
I have to believe that scenario because the other option is far more sinister and morose.
is this obscure, previously unknown group calling itself the Brigades
of Revenge. Even the name does not indicate whom they are avenging.
Arab newspapers and television programs have not been silent either.
See her for an editorial from Jordan's Al-Ghad newspaper (translated from Arabic) condemning her kidnapping and calling for her immediate release.
Also, at the Jordan Times, where apparently she worked.
Jordanian blogger Natasha has a very detailed updated blog on the kidnapping. Natasha says she knew Ms. Carroll personally.
Riverbend also ran a tribute to
the Iraqi translator who was killed accompanying Ms. Carroll.
Riverbend's tribute to the translator has been picked up by world media.
Blogger Baghdad Treasure also apparently knew Ms. Carroll and has blogged about her.
Aljazeera, after airing the video on Tuesday, issued a statement calling for Ms. Carroll's release unharmed. Here is an Aljazeera article on her kidnapping.
MSNBC also has an article on Iraqis seeking Ms. Carroll's release.
The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has also called for her immediate release.
Here is a link to a series of articles on the dangers journalists face.
And it goes without saying, check Christian Science Monitor for constant updates.
was news earlier today of US forces releasing six of eight Iraqi female
detainees, according to the BBC. Many had speculated that the release
was in response to Ms. Carroll's kidnapping.
However, the report
turned out to be erroneous. It turns out the US admitted to holding
eight female prisoners, but no mention yet on their release, if at all.
am trying to remain optimistic. I want to see this young woman released
for a number of reasons. 1) I strongly condemn any violent act against
innocents and civilians; 2) I strongly condemn any violent act against
journalists and 3) I strongly condemn any act of unprovoked violence
targeting innocents in the name of religion.
As has been shown
above, this kidnapping is contrary to the teachings of Islam no matter
what the non-Arabic speaking "Islamic experts" tell you.
with a Bosnian Muslim friend of mine. He said he was starting a
campaign of emailing every Islamic group he can find to urge them to
take a unified stand against Ms. Carroll's captors and to help prevent
any further kidnappings.
I'm really nervous about
all this. So many Iraqi groups - Sunni groups - are calling for her
immediate release. Same said groups have strong relationships with the
Iraqi resistance. If a Sunni group kidnapped Ms. Carroll, then I
believe we face a good chance of seeing her released unharmed.
God protect her and all innocents in Iraq.