Thursday, June 30, 2005

This is a joke, right? Please tell me this is a f*&#ing joke

Ace, Roger Simon and LGF alerted me to this incredible demonstration of jackassery. Apparently Andrew Jaspan, editor of Australia's well-left of center The Age thinks even harsh language inappropriate for use against the sub-human head-choppers, even when it comes from the victim of one of their kidnappings. From the Herald Sun:

Jaspan is editor-in-chief of The Age, Australia's most Left-wing daily newspaper, and on ABC radio on Wednesday said how "boorish" and "coarse" Wood was at his press conference this week when he called his captors "a---holes"...

But far more shocking was his apparent demand that Wood be more grateful to the men who'd snatched him, kicked him in the head, kept him blindfolded and bound for 47 days, shaved him bald, killed two of his colleagues, made him beg for his life, and -- says a fellow hostage from Sweden -- shot several other prisoners in front of him.

Let's run the tape.

Said Jaspan: "I was, I have to say, shocked by Douglas Wood's use of the a---hole word, if I can put it like that, which I just thought was coarse and very ill-thought through and I think demeans the man and is one of the reasons why people are slightly skeptical of his motives and everything else.

"The issue really is largely, speaking as I understand it, he was treated well there. He says he was fed every day, and as such to turn around and use that kind of language I think is just insensitive." The ingrate.

I get that sometimes the victims of kidnapping start to sympathize with their captors, which I fully admit I don't understand. But what the fuck would cause some newsman thousands of miles away to do so?

Yes, he did not do as did SBS journalist and Left hero John Martinkus after his own brief captivity and declare his kidnappers were "not savages", and say Iraq was "on the road to s---".

INSTEAD, he roared "God bless America" and praised the US-trained Iraqi soldiers -- Iraq's real freedom fighters -- who saved him, saying he was "proof positive that the current policies of the American and Australian governments is the right one".

Oh.... That.

I was remiss in pointing out that Tim Blair was particularily responsible for getting this noticed throughout the blogosphere. On his original post he also notes this fantastic followup:

A hostage held alongside Australian Douglas Wood in Iraq has hired bounty hunters to track down his former captors, promising to eliminate them one by one. Swede Ulf Hjertstrom, who was held for several weeks with Mr Wood in Baghdad, was released by his kidnappers on May 30 ...

Now, he wants to find those responsible.

"I have now put some people to work to find these bastards,” he told the Ten Network today. "I invested about $50,000 so far and we will get them one by one."

Hell yah! He should get someone like Clint Eastwood to kick in some dough for this hunt in exchange for the movie rights. I hope they catch them and do a little more than play bad music to them before turning him in.

*****Further Update ******

Annika's Journal has followed up on the story and came up with this piece of good news.

Hjertström 'doesn’t want to go into detail' about the bounty hunters, but assures Expressen that they are 'the best money can buy.

''They’re not twiddling their thumbs,' declares Hjertström, revealing that he has 'received confirmation that two of [the kidnappers] have already been taken care of.' When asked to elaborate on the fate of the purportedly captured men, the Swede sayshe 'hasn’t inquired' but has his 'suspicions.'