Al Qaeda Deadline: Negotiate or Wait?

With the clock ticking on a 72-hour deadline for Al Qaeda militants to be freed or else an American hostage will die, the U.S. State Department said it was doing everything it could to save Paul Johnson short of negotiating with the terrorists.

An Islamic Web site broadcast video Tuesday from Saudi Arabia that showed Johnson blindfolded and sitting in a chair with his profile to the camera, a large tattoo on his left arm. It displayed his Lockheed Martin identification card.

State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said Wednesday "our hearts go out to Mr. Johnson and his family," urging the "people of the world" to unite against individuals and groups who use terrorist tactics to pursue political goals

Al Qaeda deadline: Negotiate or wait?

A sample of your responses:

That is a stupid question. Of course I say wait, because if we negotiate that will show the terrorist that kidnapping works and that will dramatically increase kidnappings all over the mid-east and other regions. Not to mention the harm that will come from releasing their people, that just adds fuel to the fire, giving even more terrorist to kidnap and kill more of our people. Lets not work backwards and instead stick to our policy which is rough at times, but proves to work in the long run.
Brandon C.
Birmingham, AL

As far as Paul Johnson goes, we have to wait. If the goverenment releases those Al Quaida prisoners, it is quite possible that tens, hundreds, or even thousands of people could lose their lives due to the terror or destruction that these men would cause down the road. Very unfortunately, this case is a lesser of two evils and the lesser seems to be Paul Johnson's life. I feel deeply for his family and they will be in my prayers. It is a time like this that makes me realize how much I love my family.

Do NOT negotiate with terrorists. This only breeds more kidnappings and terror.
Dick N.
Sikeston, MO

If we give in to them, It will spur them to take more.  Hit them hard now and every time they do something such as this.  That is the only thing they understand, Force and Strength.
Greg P.
Megargel, TX

I think the Saudis should negotiate long enough to give the Delta Force time to track down and find the terrorist. Then they should put two in their bodies and one in their head to make sure the terrorist are dead. The only good terrorist is a dead terrorist.
Reidsville, NC

It may sound cold. No negotiating with terrorists. Period. Just tell me where to send flowers and a card to the man's family. And if the Saudis want our people to run their damned oil fields for them, then they MUST let our troops supervise their security. They don't like it- tough.
Dana P.
Lynn, MA

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