Tear man out of his outward circumstances; and what he then is; that only is he. -Johann Gottfried Seume, author (1763-1810)
Tonight, we're told she's free.
Or is she? In another kind of jungle? The political jungle?
How free? Debriefing doesn't sound like freedom to me. And I'm afraid she'll have to go through it.
But Mrs Betancourt is strong. She has proved that much. Surviving with dignity "out of her outward circumstances"... in the Amazonian jungle,
She's also very wise. She's had time to think of it... She's been a prisoner since february 2002.
Here are the last words of her first speech after her release, or extraction...
"LET US ALL HAVE COMPASSION FOR OUR ENEMIES"
Now, I hope the media will give her the free time she deserves...
And now that she's not trapped in the jungle anymore, let's see what she does. And what she doesn't.
For your information, this cbsnews article, and if you're too lazy to read it all, some extracts...
in case you were told otherwise... the U.S. did play a part in the whole event.
"Colombia freed Ingrid Betancourt and three U.S. military contractors from leftist guerrillas on Wednesday after military spies tricked rebels into giving them up without a single injury, the defense minister said. "...
...CBS News national security correspondent David Martin reports that the release of the hostages and Ms. Betancourt was carried out by Columbian military forces, working closely with United States intelligence. Currently, Martin is told, the hostages are being taken by the military to Brook Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas. ...
"This was primarily a Colombian operation," one U.S. official told CBS News correspondent Bob Orr. "They did all of the heavy lifting and deserve the lion's share of the credit."
..."The rescue came as U.S. presidential candidate John McCain was visiting Colombia. When news of its success reached McCain on his campaign plane, he said he and two other U.S. senators traveling with him - Joe Lieberman and Lindsay Graham - had been told about it in advance by Uribe"
Most of us are free. And have been for quite a while. How free are we?
And let's see what we all do with our endangered but still palpable freedoms in Europe at least. Free to come and go, free to look for "fair and balanced" information, free to meet the ones we love and all the ones with whom we share values and hopes, free to talk to them and on the web to express ourselves and be as creative as we can, free to fight for our rights, free to fight for peace, free to believe and free to challenge the others with respect, free to look for truth and peace.
May we all prove worthy of those freedoms and ready to fight for them if need be and have compassion, even for our enemies.