What Hezbollah's Leader Says He Didn't Expect After Kidnapping Israeli Soldiers

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

What They Knew and When They Knew It

Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah says he told Lebanese officials that the only way to win the release of prisoners in Israeli jails was to abduct Israeli soldiers — days before Hezbollah captured two IDF troops.

The Middle East Media Research Institute reports Nasrallah told Al Jazeera last week, "I said that we would abduct Israeli soldiers in meetings with some of the main political leaders in the country," adding that those leaders supported the plan when he guaranteed it would hasten the prisoners' release.

Nasrallah says he was surprised the tactic backfired, saying he never expected Israel to launch a war over just two soldiers.

Saddam's Supporters

The most wanted man in Iraq says Saddam's former henchmen are still running the insurgency — and that members of the Iraqi military are carrying out most of the attacks. Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri was Saddam's top lieutenant — and has a $10 million bounty on his head.

In written answers to Time Magazine online, he said the army is "in charge of the planning and supervision of more than 95 percent of patriotic resistance operations against the occupation."

Al-Douri rejects the current Iraqi government as a slave to "the occupying force," and says he's rebuilt Saddam's Baath party as a "revolutionary, struggle-oriented identity ... to fight to expel the occupation and liberate our country.

Political Addicts?

A Maryland candidate for Senate paid a Baltimore drug-treatment center to drive recovering addicts to a debate last week, where they held up signs supporting his campaign.

A consultant to Democrat Josh Rales' campaign paid the I Can't, We Can drug counseling center to transport the 20 patients to the event... where they were supposed to help post signs. But the addicts — who pay about $350 a month for treatment, and some of whom have criminal records — ended up holding the signs themselves.

Rales campaign manager tells the Washington Times that the addicts were recruited without the campaign's knowledge, and the contractor called paying the center for volunteers, "a real error in judgment."

Not So Peaceful

Nobel laureate Betty Williams, who won the Nobel Peace Prize 30 years ago for her campaign to end violence in her native Northern Ireland, told a group of Australian school children that she has a "very hard time with this word 'non-violence,' because I don't believe that I am non-violent."

For example, she said, "Right now, I would love to kill George Bush." Williams added, "I don't know how I ever got a Nobel Peace Prize, because when I see children die the anger in me is just beyond belief."

For the record, our sister publication "The Australian" led its story as follows: "Nobel peace laureate Betty Williams displayed a flash of her feisty Irish spirit."

—FOX News Channel's Aaron Bruns contributed to this report.