Allen B. West

ISIS takes U.S. woman hostage; time to stop giving the enemy propaganda tools

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Remember the early days of Operation Iraqi Freedom when a young female American soldier named Jessica Lynch was taken prisoner? It brought s chilling reality to the new battlefield of the 21st century — there were no frontlines, the battle lines existed everywhere. Now, we realize the enemy who has declared war against us does not operate under the Roberts Rules for Order or even the established Law of Warfare. We know ISIS currently holds an American, Stephen Sotloff, whose mother just yesterday made an emotional plea for his safety and his life.

Now, as reported by CNS News, we learn “The Islamic State militant group is holding hostage a young American woman who was doing humanitarian aid work in Syria, a family representative said Tuesday. The 26-year-old woman is the third American known to have been kidnapped by the militant group. The Islamic State group recently threatened to kill American hostages to avenge the airstrikes in Iraq against militants advancing on Mount Sinjar and the Kurdish capital of Irbil.”

According to ABC News, she was kidnapped a year ago and he terror group is demanding $6.6 million and the release of U.S. prisoners for the life of the young woman, whom a representative for the family requested not be identified.

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This doesn’t sound like just a regional threat, and clearly ISIS has declared war against the United States — just as al-Qaida did some years ago — and we know the results of our dismissal and the failed efforts of the Clinton Administration. But, don’t worry folks, President Obama is so capable, he’ll be heading off to another Democrat fundraiser on Friday.

“CNS says, “in its annual report last November, the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists estimated at least 30 journalists have been kidnapped or have disappeared in Syria — held and threatened with death by extremists or taken captive by gangs seeking ransom. The CPJ described the widespread seizure of journalists as unprecedented and largely unreported by news organizations in the hope that keeping the kidnappings out of public view may help to negotiate the captives’ release. The group reported 52 journalists have been killed since Syria’s civil war began in early 2011 and documented at least 24 other journalists who disappeared earlier this year but are now safe.”

I believe it’s time we had an honest conversation. It’s time we stop allowing these western journalists and humanitarian aid workers to freely roam about unprotected. This is a different enemy and the result is obvious — they are either going to be killed or extorted for ransom — which furthers the advancement of the Islamic jihadist movement and explodes their coffers. The policy of America is not to negotiate with terrorists — and that is the American policy, not exactly that of President Barack Hussein Obama, since he traded five senior Taliban leaders for one deserter. America cannot have its foreign policy and strategic objectives held hostage due to the actions of freelance journalists. This is a not a humane battlefield.

Further, as more Americans departing the homeland to join forces with ISIS, it is time we declare that taking such action results in a revocation of America citizenship. This means these individuals must be treated as the enemy and dealt with as such. This is war and not a law enforcement exercise. We need to be more circumspect in analyzing Americans, especially males, traveling to and from Turkey, or any other point of entry that allows them access into Iraq and Syria.

I would hope these are the types of items for which President Obama would consider using his pen and phone — but then again, he has to get ready for another fundraiser.

My heart goes out to the families of James Wright Foley, Stephen Sotloff, and the unnamed 26-year-old American woman. However, we must acknowledge this is a savage, vile and barbaric enemy who does not operate under the rules and standards of humane behavior and decency.

This enemy must be destroyed and we must not retreat — and that means not giving them the easy propaganda point of displaying Americans as hostages or being brutally murdered.

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