A few weeks ago, I was driving into work listening to a Public Radio International program about ongoing terrorism in Iraq. The topic that day was the murder of a driver for a Kuwaiti trucking firm. Obviously, the goal of the terrorists was to deny supplies from coming into Iraq by instilling fear in the company and/or it’s drivers.
The guest on PRI that day made what I thought was a rather bizarre slander against the Kuwaiti trucking firms. Asked by the host whether or not this would be an effective tactic, the guest noted that the drivers employed by the Kuwaitis are foreiengers and that the tactic would not work because the Kuwaiti firms could care less about the safety of their foreign workers.
In fact, last week one of the major trucking firms, Kuwait Gulf and Link, announced it would cease all operations in Iraq in an effort to free seven of its drivers held hostage by a group calling itself the Secret Islamic Army. The hostages were all foeigners — three Indians, three Kenyans and an Egyptian.
Frankly, I don’t think the firm should have given in to terrorism on principle, but it’s understandable why they made that decision. I wonder if the PRI guest will go back on network now and apologize. I won’t be holding my breath.
Kuwaiti firm bows to kidnappers’ demands, stops work in Iraq. Agence-France Press, August 27, 2004.
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