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Held Hostage

At our morning meeting, we tried to pin down the definition of "hostage." In the end, we deferred to Neal, who is more of an authority than we. In 1991, he and a few other journalists, including Chris Hedges, then of The New York Times, were taken hostage by the Iraqi National Guard. A hostage, he emphasized, is different than a captive.

After we dispersed, I consulted the dictionary. Here it ishostage — as it appears in Merriam-Webster: "a person held by one party in a conflict as a pledge pending the fulfillment of an agreement;" or "a person taken by force to secure the taker's demands." Absent from that definition is any sense of the intense emotion associated with the term. In the second hour today, we'll talk to two men who were held hostage, and we'd like to hear from you. If you've ever been a hostage, where was it? What was it like?



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Yes...Do you feel the loneliness you felt in captivity anymore....we all have moments of despair does it compare with the feeling of the unknown life of a hostage?

Sent by jenny | 3:29 PM | 1-21-2008

why you didn't interviwed Clara Rojas? You announced it, publish in your website, and didn't even mencion anything else?

Sent by angelica | 3:42 PM | 1-21-2008

The human spirit and will to survive is amazing and these men attest to that fact. The movie, "The Diving Bell and The Butterfly" about Jean-Doninique Bauby, an Elle magazine editor held captive in his body after suffering a cerebrovascular stroke became 'locked in' and left with only one eye to communicate with. Jean-Do used his mind to lift himself from the trap of the 'diving bell' and soared as a 'butterfly' as he used his mind, memories, facility with language and most importantly his preserved sense of humor. Jean-Do wrote a book (by the same title), by blinking once for the correct letter as read by a care giver. The message, so sensitively presented by film producer Kathleen Kennedy, is a message to us all. (Kennedy: The Color Purple, Schindler's List, Raiders of the Lost Ark...)

Sent by Sharlien Harrington, Redding CA | 3:49 PM | 1-21-2008