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The Asylum

Welcome to the Asylum. This is a site devoted to politics and current events in America, and around the globe. The THREE lunatics posting here are unabashed conservatives that go after the liberal lies and deceit prevalent in the debate of the day. We'd like to add that the views expressed here do not reflect the views of other inmates, nor were any inmates harmed in the creation of this site.

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Hot Off The Presses -- Brit Sailors To Be Released

Over @ Hot Air, Allah has the round-up about how these people are to be released and why. This is the latest from Yahoo:

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Iran would free the 15 detained British sailors and marines Wednesday as a "gift" to the British people.

He said the captives, who were seized while on patrol in the northern Persian Gulf on March 23, would be taken to Tehran airport at the end of the news conference that he was addressing.

"On the occasion of the birthday of the great prophet (Muhammad) ... and for the occasion of the passing of Christ, I say the Islamic Republic government and the Iranian people — with all powers and legal right to put the soldiers on trial — forgave those 15," he said, referring to the Muslim prophet's birthday on March 30 and the Easter season.

"This pardon is a gift to the British people," he said.

His announcement came shortly after he pinned a medal on the chest of the Iranian coast guard commander who intercepted the sailors and marines.

There are two parts to this story that I am not happy with. There is this from Yahoo, from a report on Iranian TV which has yet to be confirmed by anyone in Baghdad:

Iranian state media reported Wednesday that an Iranian envoy will be allowed to meet the five Iranians detained in January by U.S. forces in the northern Iraqi town of Irbil.

There was no immediate confirmation of the report in Baghdad, where neither Iraqi government nor a U.S. military spokesman said they knew that permission had been granted for such a meeting.

"A representative from the Iranian Embassy in Baghdad will meet" the detained Iranians, the official Islamic Republic News Agency said.

U.S. troops detained the five Iranians when it raided their office in Irbil, the capital of the Kurdish autonomous zone, on Jan 11. The troops also confiscated computers and documents.

And then there is this story from the International Herald Tribune that reads like a "prisoner exchange:"

An Iranian diplomat detained in Iraq for the last two months has been released and returned to Iran on Tuesday, according to the Iranian news agency IRNA.

Jalal Sharafi, who was the second secretary of Iran's Embassy in Iraq, was abducted in Baghdad on February 4 by men wearing Iraqi military uniforms and with official identification. Iran immediately held the United States responsible for his safety and demanded his release, but at the time, an American military spokesman said the military had no knowledge of the event.

Sharafi arrived at Tehran's Mehrabad International Airport on Tuesday and was greeted by the Iranian foreign minister, Manouchehr Mottaki, and other ministry officials, the IRNA report said.

IRNA, a government news agency, provided no details in an English language report about the circumstances of his release, which Iran has been demanding along with the release of other Iranians still in detention in Iraq. ...

Sharafi's release from detention comes amid heightened tensions between the Iranian government and Britain over the capture of 15 British sailors who are being held in Iran.

First, I do not like the guise with which the Iraqis used to release Sharafi. This looks too much like a prisoner exchange. Granted it is not the five people that Iran wanted released, but if the story above it is true, and the Iranians have gained access to the Quds commanders, it is almost as bad. Small concessions are no different than big ones. While we may pat ourselves on the back for not giving in in toto, we still did.

Yes, the British sailors are to be released, and they will be returning home. But the memories of the ordeal will live with them, and the fact that we were willing to give into the demands of an enemy, even in part, sends the wrong message to the world. In the age of hyper-feminization, and a refusal to meet some issues head on, I fear we might just have opened a Pandora's Box that may indeed be tough to close.



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