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December 20, 2005
Germany Frees Terrorist Wanted By US

The Germans continue their cluelessness in the war on terror by releasing not just any known terrorist serving out a life sentence, but one wanted by the US for the murder of a Navy diver in 1985. The AP reports that German diplomatic sources confirm the release of Mohammed Ali Hammadi back to Beirut and his Hizbollah cohorts despite an outstanding extradition request from the United States:

Germany has secretly released a Hizbollah member jailed for life for killing a U.S. Navy diver and returned him to Lebanon despite an extradition request from the United States, Lebanese political sources said on Tuesday.

They said Mohammad Ali Hammadi, convicted of killing Navy diver Robert Dean Stethem during the 1985 hijacking of a TWA flight to Beirut and sentenced to life without parole, was flown back to Beirut last week Diplomatic sources in Germany confirmed Hammadi's release.

In case anyone wonders how that could have happened, the AP also notes that Hammadi's release came just a few days before Islamists in Iraq released the German hostage they had held since November 25th. Coincidence? Hardly likely, and if not it demonstrates that the Syrian-backed Hizbollah has operational connections to at least some of the terrorist groups working in Iraq.

Like the Italians, the Germans have decided that the best way to fight terrorism is to surrender to it and negotiate with the lunatics who want to destroy the West. They have run up the white flag and in this case, coughed up a prisoner who by rights should have been extradited to the United States decades ago to face murder charges. The reason Germany never gave us that opportunity was their moral preening over their anti-execution stance. That moral standing has certainly dissipated now, given their craven negotiations with hostagers and terrorists.

It's time to leave Germany behind. It has become a nest of cowards and skulks, and this episode proves it. If this is how Germany treats people who murder our servicemen, then let us not have one more troop stationed there one more day to provide them security while the Germans spend the money they should be spending on their defense on the dole instead. We have much better friends in more strategic locations east of Germany, people who know what terrorism and tyranny means and who have much more enthusiasm for freedom and liberty than the past and present German governments. We should pull out at least one of our consulates as well, just to make sure the point does not get lost.

It's time to say Auf wiedersehn to the poseurs of the Rhine.

UPDATE: Want more of an example of German cluelessness? Reuters reports on the German reason for letting Hammadi go:

"He served his term," a spokeswoman for Germany's Justice Ministry told a news conference.

Uh, his term was life without parole. Did Germany send a corpse to Beirut? Or did Hammadi claim to be born again in order to get out?

For those who debated me last week on the death penalty, this episode certainly makes me think twice about applying it to terrorists, at least.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at December 20, 2005 5:29 AM

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