Tags: ISIS/Islamic State | Newsmax Prime | War on Terrorism | Michael Hayden | removal | prosecution | families

Gen. Hayden: Obama Switch on Ransoms Could Spur More Hostage-Taking

By    |   Tuesday, 23 June 2015 08:48 PM

Retired Air Force Gen. Michael Hayden told Newsmax TV Tuesday that President Barack Obama's switch, allowing U.S. families to pay ransom for hostages without prosecution, could encourage more terrorists to capture Americans.

"I would strongly recommend we keep an eye out for what now happens in terms of how often Americans are taken hostage under this new policy," Hayden, who directed both the CIA and the National Security Agency, told "Newsmax Prime" host J.D. Hayworth.

"When you allow a family to pay ransom for a hostage, you are in a sense transferring risk from your family member to future family members," Hayden explained. "In other words, you may be making it more likely that other people's children or father or mother or sister are captured and held for ransom because you've suddenly made it more profitable for those who would do this."

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The Obama administration is expected to announce Wednesday that families of Americans held by terrorists can communicate directly with captors and even pay ransom without fear of prosecution.

The shift in longstanding White House policy is part of a broad review of U.S. hostage guidelines.

"We need to check to see what this new approach actually does in terms of the likelihood that Americans are held hostage for ransom," Hayden told Newsmax. "If we begin to give in on the specific cases overall, we would make the situation worse for Americans abroad."

Turning his attention to Islamic State (ISIS) terrorists, who have killed four Americans in its string of massacres since last year, Hayden said that new propaganda videos showing child soldiers being trained proved that destroying the group "is going to take more than a generation to work out.

"The ISIS video is almost symbolic of the kind of problem that we're facing," he told Hayworth. "It also suggests something that we also have to kind of take to heart — and that's about the nature of the enemy we're facing."

The terrorists believe that any — and all — "true believers are combatants in this cause," Hayden said, including children.

In December, ISIS slaughtered four Christian children for refusing to embrace Islam.

"Obviously it's repulsive to people like you and me, but people can do some very terrible things when they think what it is they're doing is the will of God — and I fear that's what we're seeing here."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Retired Air Force Gen. Michael Hayden told Newsmax TV Tuesday that President Barack Obama's switch, allowing U.S. families to pay ransom for hostages without prosecution, could encourage more terrorists to capture Americans. I would strongly recommend we keep an eye out...
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2015-48-23
Tuesday, 23 June 2015 08:48 PM
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