Jewish World Review Sept. 27, 2004 / 12 Tishrei 5765

Dan Abrams

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Why many in Britain are giving al Qaeda terrorists in Iraq exactly what they want | Ken Bigley, a Brit, was one of three Westerners kidnapped last Thursday. The other two were Americans. Jack Hensley and Eugene Armstrong were viciously beheaded by the cowards. They then had Bigley make a videotaped plea to Prime Minister Tony Blair knowing that everyone expects that Bigley will be next.

From the terrorist's perspective it was pretty clever. It also seems to be working. The terrorists had claimed they had a demand. That all Iraqi women be released from certain prisons in Iraq. The problem, there were no women in those prisons. Of course, these are not really demands at all.

As it turns out, two of Saddam's senior advisers, including Rihab Rashid Taha, known as Dr. Germ, were being held at another location. Well, the Iraqis had initially said they would release one of them. They quickly shifted course after realizing it would be seen as caving to the terrorists.

Now some say it was U.S. pressure. Either way, there's no question it was the right decision.

Anything else would only embolden the terrorists to do it again and again. They will kill anyway. But no many in Britain, including Bigley's family, are putting the heat on Tony Blair saying they will hold Blair responsible if Bigley is killed.

Exactly as the terrorists would have hoped, putting the blame on Blair or Bush instead of on the terrorists' themselves.

Now it's hard to blame the family. They want anything and everything possible done to save Ken Bigley. They don't deserve any of this. But Bigley's brother has said "it's sickening to hear Blair say he won't deal with terrorists."

What Phil Bigley and others need to realize is that these are not kidnappers with a mission, with a tangible goal unless you consider the demise of the Western world a cause.

9/11 was a lesson not to be forgotten. The hijackers told the passengers, as long as you stay in the back of the plane and keep quiet, you won't get hurt. It's generally bad policy to negotiate with terrorists. Negotiating with these terrorists in particular, I'm afraid, will not save Ken Bigley and may lead to more families suffering the way that the Bigleys are today.

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JWR contributor Dan Abrams anchors “The Abrams Report,” Monday through Friday from 9-10 p.m. ET on MSNBC TV. He also covers legal stories for “NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw,” “Today” and “Dateline NBC.” To visit his website, click here. Comment by clicking here.



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