Topics

James Foley

Where the new U.S. policy on hostages goes wrong

Where the new U.S. policy on hostages goes wrong

In announcing a new program to coordinate efforts to recover Americans held by foreign terrorists, President Obama on Wednesday assured their families that "we will stand by you" and share information. He also promised that families who pay ransom to hostage-takers wouldn't be prosecuted by the government under laws against providing material support for terrorism. Those aspects of the new policy are laudable. More problematic is Obama's promise that the government would make it easier for families to communicate (and by implication negotiate) with hostage-takers. That part of the policy is in tension with his reiteration of the long-standing — though...

Loading
72°