Osthoff found with her own ransom money?
The story of the German archaeologist, Susan Osthoff, taken hostage in Iraq always had an odd smell about it. It was long suggested that Germany paid ransom for her release. Though Germany never confirmed this directly, the news that she had in her possession some of her own ransom money after being released at least confirms this, as well as add another layer of stench to the whole ordeal.
Susanne Osthoff, 43, was released after a month in captivity on Dec 18. While she took a shower in Germany's embassy in Baghdad, officers from the BND, its intelligence service, found "several thousand dollars" fastened with rubber bands in her clothes, according to one of the investigators. Their serial numbers matched those on notes paid to secure her release.
Yesterday's newspapers wondered whether she was given the money by her kidnappers because she co-operated with them or was involved in her own kidnapping to secure money for humanitarian projects. Alternatively, it was suggested that, as she is reported to have told investigators, she received the money as part-compensation for money the kidnappers stole from her when she was seized.
So the world is now to believe that the same groups infamous for hacking away and beheading westerners with Gerber hunting knives are now in the practice of compensating former captives for their inconvenience?
Just for effect, one last quote from the article:
Politicians and the public were yesterday asking new questions about her ordeal. Many have lost patience with Miss Osthoff, a convert to Islam, since she declared her intention to return to Iraq and failed to thank them for their efforts to free her.
Consider also that Osthoff told al-Jazeera that she "was so happy to know that I had not fallen into the hands of criminals." Apparently bilking a government of $3 million is not criminal. Germany's payment of ransom only gives credit to the enterprise as a profitable endeavor. The whole ordeal makes the stomach turn. The Belmont Club has more.