Had the hostage rescue mission President Obama ordered on Sunday safely brought the hostages home, the president would be a national hero today. However, the mission failed with both hostages, Luke Somers and Pierre Korkie, getting killed by their hostage takers. Somers was an American photojournalist, and Korkie was a South African school teacher. Ransom had already been arranged for Korkie who was set to be released later that same day.
Lawmakers from both parties were quick to voice their support for President Obama’s hostage rescue attempt. Some critics are saying the failed mission underscores the need to pay the terrorists ransom money. However, GOP Congressman Mike Rogers, who chairs the House Intelligence Committee Chairman, and Rep. Adam Schiff, who sits on the same committee, explained that paying ransom to Al Qaida is to fund their operations. They cited the atrocities that the terrorist group commits such as rape, forced slavery & marriage, and the targeted killing of innocent men, women, and children.
While a ransom will certainly benefit the person being held hostage, the lawmakers pointed out the hidden cost in such actions which result in nations encouraging more hostage taking activity. That is easy to say, but no one has offered up solutions as to how these missions could be improved. As per Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, the Pentagon conducts immensely thorough preparation for such missions.