|LONDON (AP) - Former Middle East hostage Terry Waite has called for dialogue with al-Qaida, saying the organization had moderate elements that could be engaged constructively. |
Waite spent nearly five years in captivity after being kidnapped in 1987 by Islamic Jihad militants in Beirut, Lebanon. He was there trying to negotiate the release of Western hostages.
His call for talks with al-Qaida was made during a debate due to be aired Saturday by the British Broadcasting Corp.
"Dialogue is the way forward," Waite, noting past talks with the African National Congress in South Africa and the IRA in Northern Ireland. "My own experience is that you can talk to those whose positions seem impossible."
Al Qaida is not even in the same damn universe as the ANC and IRA at their worst. The west is filled with way too many people like Waite who think talking to someone who wants to kill and dominate you is going to work. It seems every so often like this is a reminder of why militant Islamists think they will win because there is a significant amount of people living in the west who are willing to live on their knees for peace than die on their feet.