Dominating American Thought and Policy

Others Who Stood In The Spotlight

His blindfolded face has become a symbol of both personal and national agony — the continuing ordeal of the 52 American hostages remaining in Iran, and the grinding frustration of a U.S. that has been unable to win their release from almost 14 months in captivity. But to the millions who see his often published picture, he is a man without identity, the unknown hostage. The State Department will not disclose his name, for fear of upsetting his already distraught family.

That too is symbolic: as individual human beings, the hostages have all but vanished from the...

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