Secure Freedom Minute: Rewarding Hostage-Taking Endangers Americans Everywhere


Basketball star Brittney Griner is back in the USA, her freedom from a Russian jail bought with the release of Viktor Bout, a notorious arms trafficker nicknamed “the Merchant of Death.” Presumably, he’s back in business and almost certainly working to help his friend and liberator, Vladimir Putin, replenish the Kremlin’s depleted stocks of weapons for use against Ukraine, adding to the blood of countless victims already on Bout’s hands. 

 As it happens, this ransom was paid shortly before the arrest of a Libyan intelligence officer named Mohammad Mas’ud accused of building the bomb that killed 230 people when it blew up Pan Am 103 thirty-four years ago. 

 With the Biden administration rewarding those who take Americans hostage, what are the chances that someone in Libya’s failed state will try to grab one of us to free Mas’ud next?  

 This is Frank Gaffney.

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