The same group that kidnapped and killed Italian Journalist Enzo Baldoni this week has now taken two French Journalists hostage in Iraq. The Islamic militant group calling itself Islamic Army in Iraq
claims they are holding the hostages because of the French government's ban on wearing the hijab in schools. Via The Independant
On the tape, the militants described the French law banning the wearing of Islamic headdresses as "an aggression on the Islamic religion and personal freedoms".
Excuse me? Personal freedoms? A group kidnapping and killing journalists is espousing personal freedoms as one of their causes? What the hell?
Chad Evans at In The Bullpen puts it right:
The “reason” why these journalists were taken hostage being the law in France forbidding the wearing of Islamic head scarves. The law in France also outlaws Christian and Jewish religious apparel as well. It is ironic that these terrorists are protesting a law in France that oppresses people while they live in a country that has done so for years. They didn’t stand up then, why would they now?
Chad has more points to make, click the link above.
My Pet Jawa makes a great point against all the anti-Iraq campaign folks that "If we weren't in Iraq, there would be no hostages....".
Fact of the matter is if it wasn't Iraq it'd be something else. We weren't in Iraq for the slew of hostage takings and terrorists attacks that have taken place. We weren't in Iraq on September 11th when Islamic militants attacked the WTC. We weren't in Iraq in the '93 bombing of the WTC. We weren't in Iraq when the USS Cole was attacked.
Granted that currently Iraq is an easy place to pick up some hostages because of lacking security in certain areas. Most of the hostages have been taken in outlying areas. The old saying of "Use at your own risk" should be stated here as these journalists are heading into areas known to be dangerous. However any group picking up a journalist or photographer and threatening his life in order to get some government to do something is illogical to me.
Some guy goes to school, does some writing for a paper or TV news organization. Then he decides to head to Iraq and wanders into rough areas to get a good story and some goons catch him and threaten his government over something the fellow had no direct involvement with. It's just ridiculous.
The fact that they are threatening a government that was so outspoken against attacking Iraq and then to have that same government being threatened, should send up red flags that there really is something wrong over there and that it's not just some US hysteria. Hysteria didn't bring the US to form a coalition against Afghanistan and Iraq, that these groups have something seriously against western cultures everywhere is what brought the coalitions.
Do I expect the French government to take a look at the truth? Hell no, I expect them to fold and change their laws and bend to the terrorists as the Philippines did. Appeasement doesn't work.
The Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiller really made me blush with his take on it (and I'm an ex-sailor).
Blogs of War
The Politburo Diktat under "French Troops to Leave Iraq" (hehe)