Prime-Time Terrorism

As the hijackers play for publicity, Israel says it will free 31 prisoners

It was like a nightmarish rerun of the Iranian hostage drama, with a surreal twist. Once again American hostages were paraded before the cameras by their terrorist captors. Only this time they were not blindfolded, as the American embassy officials had been in Tehran, or made to grovel by bug-eyed radicals shouting "Death to America!" Rather, the prisoners, some unshaven, all uneasy, but combed and neat, were graciously ushered out to meet the press.

Acting as a kind of terrorist talk-show host was Ali Hamdan, a well-groomed representative of the Lebanese Amal, the mainstream Shi'ite faction that had in effect hijacked...

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