The Blog

U.S. Frees Qods Force Officers, Iran Returns Dead Bodies

1:51 PM, Jul 29, 2009 • By BILL ROGGIO
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As the United States prepares to draw down in Iraq, the military has begun to free senior-level Iranian Qods Force detainees captured over the past two years. In return, Iran has begun turning over the bodies of British hostages its proxies captured in 2007.

Last month, the U.S. military released Laith al Qazali, the brother of Qais Qazali, the leader of an Iranian-backed terror group that kidnapped five British contractors in Baghdad after Qais was captured in early 2007. Qais's network was behind the capture and subsequent murder of five U.S. soldiers at a provincial center in Karbala in early 2007.

U.S. forces released Laith as part of a deal to get the five Brits freed. In return, the terror group turned over two dead Brits, who were killed months earlier. Their bodies were returned with gunshot wounds.

Earlier this month, the U.S. military turned over five Qods Forces officers, including Mahmud Farhadi, perhaps the most dangerous Iranian operative captured in Iraq. Farhadi was the Qods Force theater commander in northern Iraq and directly supported operations against U.S., Coalition, and Iraqi forces.

Reports from Britain indicate two of the three remaining British hostages are very likely dead.

According to the London Times, Qais should be released from U.S. custody some time later this year. Sadly, the odds now seem good that the last British hostage won't come home alive. The U.S and Britain have already signaled they are perfectly fine with trading senior terrorist leaders for corpses.