Why Does Iran Keep Taking American Hostages?

Obama negotiated with hostage-takers but left the hostages behind.

THE TOWER
by Bridget Johnson
September 2015

It’s hard to remember a time when the Islamic Republic didn’t have U.S. citizens in its prisons. There’s a reason for that.

In April, American citizen and former Marine Amir Hekmati made a special plea to congressional leaders from Tehran’s notorious Evin prison, where he is incarcerated on trumped-up espionage charges. The United States, he said, needs to ensure that Iran faces “serious consequences” for its “serial hostage-taking,” before it claims another victim. Hekmati was seized on his first trip to Iran. Born in Flagstaff, Arizona to parents who left Iran in 1979, Hekmati wanted to meet his extended family and visit his ailing grandmother…Their nightmare was compounded when Hekmati surfaced on state TV that December. He was trumpeted as a captured American spy, and delivered an on-air “confession” the following month. It was quickly followed by a closed-door, half-day trial in which he was sentenced to death on a charge of conspiracy to commit espionage. READ MORE

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