Thursday, March 23, 2006

Good news...and a question

The BBC reports today that Norman Kember, the British national who was abducted in Iraq last November, has been rescued along with 2 Canadian colleagues who had also been abducted.
One British and two Canadian peace activists held hostage in Iraq have been
freed in an operation by multinational forces.
Excellent news.

But why is it that, when a good thing happens, "multi-national" forces are responsible, but when bad things happen, "US-led forces" are responsible?

UPDATE: The Guardian says that the rescue operation involved "British, Iraqi and other coalition forces." I wonder which "other" coalition forces they might be referring to.

UPDATE II: Reuters says that "U.S.-led forces freed three Christian peace activists held hostage in Iraq on Thursday..."


Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the casual observer of the rolling news broadcasters' screen messages it would appear that the kidnappers had let Kember go.

How can being rescued by troops be described as "released"?

4:12 PM  
Blogger James Of England said...

The Telegraph is the paper to go to for full coverage:

When it received confirmation of where Norman Kember was being held, the SAS's Black unit, the specialist hostage release team stationed near the British embassy in the Baghdad Green Zone, was already in full kit and ready to move.

The team is under orders to keep men on full alert at all times. But the previous evening's arrest of an Iraqi believed to know the whereabouts of the three peace activists meant they had already joined the Americans and Canadians who would help conduct the operation.

It'd be nice if they had some details of the others, too, but given the Telegraph's general enthusiasm for the SAS, I think they were lucky to get the half-sentence that the other news organisations denied them.

6:47 AM  
Anonymous Keith said...

I think generally they use US-led with most of the front line troops are American, and Multi-national when most of the troops are American, with another member of the coalition in command, In this case the SAS.

Interesting website,

10:04 PM  

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