Now that Jill Carroll is safely out of Iraq and in the care of US military at Ramstein Air Base in Germany, she feels safe to speak freely about her time in captivity and shortly after her release:
RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany (AP) – Former hostage Jill Carroll strongly disavowed statements she had made during captivity in Iraq and shortly after her release, saying Saturday she had been repeatedly threatened.
In a video, recorded before she was freed and posted by her captors on an Islamist Web site, Carroll spoke out against the U.S. military presence. But Carroll said the recording was made under threat. Her editor has said three men were pointing guns at her at the time.
“During my last night in captivity, my captors forced me to participate in a propaganda video. They told me I would be released if I cooperated. I was living in a threatening environment, under their control, and wanted to go home alive. So I agreed,” she said in a statement read by her editor in Boston.
“Things that I was forced to say while captive are now being taken by some as an accurate reflection of my personal views. They are not.”
Ms. Carroll also rejected the comments she made in the interview shortly after her release:
Carroll also disavowed an interview she gave to the party shortly after her release. She said the party had promised her the interview would not be aired “and broke their word.”
“At any rate, fearing retribution from my captors, I did not speak freely. Out of fear I said I wasn’t threatened. In fact, I was threatened many times,” she said. “Also, at least two false statements about me have been widely aired: That I refused to travel and cooperate with the U.S. military and that I refused to discuss my captivity with U.S. officials. Again, neither is true.”
Jill has got to be relieved to be going home. From her statement, it sounds like she is cooperating with the US military and is probably being debriefed while she’s in Germany.
Update: Read Jill Carroll’s complete statement here.