There is a new report out that says the two U.S. hikers, who were captured in Iran last summer and held on spying charges, may soon be released. That’s great news for their families and I’m happy they’re being released unharmed, except maybe for their pride. But I have other thoughts on their capture and the actions that led up to it.
These three kids, the two men who are still being held and the woman who was released in September, were hiking in Iraq. They were hiking near the Iranian border. The hikers apparently wandered across the Iranian border and were taken into custody by Iranian officials. They were charged with spying and held in custody pending further action.
The U.S. government negotiated in every way to get these three Americans released, insisting they were not spies and were merely guilty of wandering across the border by mistake. And I believe that’s true.
However, I also believe if there was a charge, either in Iran or the U.S.A., for being incredibly stupid, these three kids should have been booked, charged, tried and convicted. First of all, Iraq has been a U.S. war zone for 7½ years. Consequently, if you go hiking in the area knowing this, you’re not to bright. Secondly, Iran has been suspected, if not proven, to be giving supplies and support to the Iraqis fighting against coalition forces. Iran is not a friendly country to the U.S.A. and therefore, if you go wandering near their border, you’re even less bright.
As I said, it’s a good thing they’re being released and that they didn’t end up in an Iranian prison for the rest of their lives. But I have very little sympathy for them, given the circumstances of their arrests. Being stupid does not always get people off the hook so easily. These kids could have ended up serving 20 to 30 years in an Iranian prison. They should be thanking anyone and everyone involved in obtaining their release, and someone should smack them upside the head when they get back to the States. Or maybe a good spanking then send them to their rooms for a month or two…