The nearly $2 billion ransom the Obama administration paid Iran to secure the release of four American hostages was only Iran’s way of testing the waters.
Now that they know the water’s fine, they’ve snatched more hostages and they have their hands out for “mo money,” specifically, “many billions of dollars,” The Washington Free Beacon reported.
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Two of the six American hostages being held are U.S. businessman Siamak Namazi and his father Baquer, who were arrested in February by the Islamic Republic — one month after the U.S. paid for the first four hostages.
And what do they expect in return for these two? “We should wait and see, the U.S. will offer … many billions of dollars to release” the Namazis, according to Iran’s Mashregh News outlet.
Iran sentenced both father and son to 10 years in prison this week.
There are two reasons the United States has a policy of not making ransom payments. One, it’s axiomatic that “bad hombres” shouldn’t be rewarded for their bad acts. Two, it sets a precedent, which only encourages a repeat performance.
And that’s exactly what happened here.
— Sheriff Paul Babeu (@PaulBabeuAZ) October 20, 2016
Six Americans have been abducted and arrested so far this year since the release of the original four, and U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk said that the Obama administration’s payments is only encouraging the abduction of Americans by Iran.
“I am saddened to learn of the sentencing of Baquer Namazi and his son Siamak by Iran this week,” the Illinois Republican told the Free Beacon.
Kirk co-authored key Iran sanctions and chairs the Senate Banking Subcommittee on National Security and International Trade and Finance, which oversees Iran sanctions policy.
“After airlifting $1.7 billion in cash ransom payments to Iran, even the U.S. State Department now warns of increased dangers that the world’s biggest state sponsor of terrorism will continue to illegally seize Americans and Westerners who travel or do business with Iran. Companies, banks, and American citizens would be wise to stay away from Iran,” Kirk added.
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