Theodore's World: Germans Thumb Their Noses at Americans...Again

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December 23, 2005

Germans Thumb Their Noses at Americans...Again

The German government secretly released a member of the terrorist group Hezbullah after he served a mere 19 years of a life sentence for murdering a US Navy diver. In spite of strong objections by American diplomats, Germany disregarded the Bush Administration's pleas that the killer either be extradited to the US or remain behind bars in Germany.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The brothers of a U.S. Navy diver killed in a 1985 hijacking expressed outrage on Thursday that a Hizbollah hijacker had been released by Germany and demanded Lebanon turn him over to the United States for trial.

Mohammad Ali Hammadi was quietly released last week after serving nearly 19 years of a life sentence for his role in the hijacking of a TWA airliner and the murder of U.S. Navy diver Robert Dean Stethem in Beirut. He was immediately returned to Lebanon despite U.S. objections.

When Hammadi was freed, Washington vowed to recapture him and bring him to trial.

"At this point I think what I can assure anybody who's listening, including Mr. Hamadi, is that we will track him down," State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said, according to BBC. "We will find him and we will bring him to justice in the United States for what he's done."

The ruthless terrorist, who was convicted of killing Robert Dean Stethem in Beirut during the 1985 hijacking of a TWA flight and sentenced to life in prison, was quietly transported to Lebanon last week. Critics of this release accuse the German government of being disingenuous during the Justice Ministry news conference. To them it's simple -- serving 19 years in prison for a vicious murder is not life imprisonment.

TWA Flight 847, with 145 passengers and nine crew members, was flying from Athens to Rome on June 14, 1985 when it was hijacked by Hizbullah members to back demands for the release of hundreds of Lebanese from Israeli jails.

It began.........................
June 1985 Friday morning, just under a half an hour into the flight two terrorist brandished their guns and grenades, TWA flight 847 a Boeing 727 would now be hijacked. TWA Flight 847 out of Athens to Rome is hijacked by Shiite Muslims who have been identified as members of Islamic Jihad, "Holy War", a group of various fundamentalist, operating in Lebanon and other Middle East countries.

The flight included over 150 passengers and its crew. At least 100 of the passengers were Americans. Enroute, the pilot contacted Beirut tower. The pilot reports his situation, he further states, "He has pulled a hand-grenade pin and is ready to blow up the aircraft if he has to. We must, I repeat, we must land at Beirut. We must land at Beirut. No alternative." Beirut, not wanting any involvement with the terrorist, attempts to prevent Flight 847 from landing. Beirut ordered airport crews to block the runways with trucks and buses.

However, pilot John Testrake informed Beirut tower, "They are beating up passengers. We must land in Beirut. He has pulled the pin of the grenade. We must land. He is ready to blow up the plane." A terrorist responded over the radio, "We are suicide terrorists! If you don't let us land, we will crash the plane into your control tower, or fly it to Baabda and crash into the Presidential Palace!"

Robert Stethem

More details HERE of what happened to Robert Stethem.

When the demands were not met, Stethem was singled out. The hijackers learned he was a member of the US military. They beat and tortured him. Then, they shot him and dumped his body on the tarmac at the Beirut airport.

Wild Thing comments...............
In 1995, the USS Stethem was named after the late Robert Stethem to recognize his heroism. But today, America must demonstrate that his death at the hands of Islamic terrorists means more than just a name on a ship.

The German goverment has not only paroled the convicted murder, Mohammed Hammadi, but they went back on their standing promise to turn him over to US custody. Bottom line, Germany now openly supports terrorism and countries that harbor terrorists. Lebanon continues to harbor people who have killed many Americans and Jews.

For more information on the terrorists please go to my Terrorists page at my website.

For more information about Israel and their fight against terrorists, please visit my page titled Israel at my website.

Posted by Wild Thing at December 23, 2005 12:39 AM

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There must be "realpolitics" going on here because the implications of this seem obvious to me. Germany won't keep behind bars someone who murdered an American under the jurisdiction of their laws. How could any American traveller or business now feel safe enough to put their life or livelihood within the hands of the German legal system? I would have to imagine near zero tourism to Germany and a sharp reduction of business interaction as well, since who knows what a German court might do. Business depends on security and the enforcement of promises.

It probably won't happen because in reality, America's greatness depends on an integrated, open world of free trade and the sharing of ideas. There is a strong reluctance to isolate anyone even for outrageous behavior for fear it might undercut America's own strength.

I don't know what the alternative is. I know the film Munich, misguided as it may be in terms of perspective, is based on one country's attempt to administer justice when no one else will.

Posted by: AbbaGav at December 23, 2005 02:53 AM

I am still angry about this. I wrote a moderately scathing report on this.

Can you believe I was told I did not handle it in a way that was condusive to easing German-American relations over at the Atlantic Review? I DON'T GIVE A HOOT! Aarrgghhh.

Posted by: Rosemary at December 23, 2005 08:11 AM

The US should order the immediate closure of all American bases in Germany along with cutting off ALL foreign aid. I for one am sick of pussyfooting around with those people. They need us, we don’t need them.

Posted by: BobF at December 23, 2005 08:43 AM

Hi AbbaGav, thank you for your comment. I agree I would not feels safe as a business person to have a company there or employees there. It is not a safe place for Americans.

Germany has gone the way of France regarding the terrorists. I would never give in to them on any terms.

Posted by: Wild Thing at December 23, 2005 09:02 AM

Hi Rosemary, I love your writing thank you for the link.
I agree with you, I could care less about easing German-American relations. I say let Germany kiss up to us,I am sick of our being concerned with if another country likes us or not. It is costing American lives.

Thank you so much for your post and the links!!

Posted by: Wild Thing at December 23, 2005 09:05 AM

I agree Bob, it is time for America to stand by what Bush said. Either you are for us, or against us and if you are harboring terrorists you are on the side of the enemy and Germany is fsvoring the terrorists for sure.
Thank you sooo much for your post.

Posted by: Wild Thing at December 23, 2005 09:07 AM

I have this feeling it was a political deal with the terror'shit group. Did I not read a few days ago that a German civilian had been kidnapped and then released in Iraq? Maybe not-my memory is not what it used to be. But this just doesn't make sense in any other way. The Germans have their own problems with the Islamic terrorists and have been working with us to bring them in. This release is just out of character for them-especially now that there is a new conservative leading the givernment there.

Posted by: GUYK at December 23, 2005 12:12 PM

Hi GuyK, I never thought of that.

I am not sure about this too, I think if I heard right on the news today on my way to work that now this guy they released (the terrorist) one knows where he is. Sheesh, he could be anywhere now and planning who knows what.

Thank you for your comment Guy.Something to think about for sure.

Posted by: Wild Thing at December 23, 2005 12:32 PM

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