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Terrorism News

A collection of open-source terrorism news from around the world.
Date: Mar 12, 2012

An accused member of a Colombian terrorist organization is to be arraigned Monday in D.C. federal court after being extradited to the United States over the weekend on hostage-taking charges, officials said.  Alexander Beltran Herrera, 35, is charged with one count of conspiracy to commit hostage taking, three counts of hostage taking, one court of using and carrying a firearm during a crime of violence, one count of conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists and one count of conspiracy to provide material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

According to the indictment from D.C. federal court, Beltran Herrera was involved in the hostage taking of three U.S. citizens.  The these three victims were seized by other members of the terrorist organization Beltran Herrera is a part of in February 2003.  Another American citizen and a Colombian citizen were also seized and then were shot and killed, the indictment stated.

Read more: Washington Examiner

It has been just four months since a military jury on this military base convicted the ringleader of a rogue Army unit that shot Afghans for sport.  In 2011, at least 12 soldiers here committed suicide.  Last week, Senator Patty Murray criticized a military hospital here for overturning 285 diagnoses of post-traumatic stress disorder.  And then came Sunday and the news that a 38-year-old staff sergeant based at Lewis-McChord, a married father of two children whose name the Army had not released, was believed to have shot and killed 16 Afghan civilians in an assassination-style ambush.

Lewis-McChord, one of the largest military bases in the United States, with about 40,000 soldiers, has been the subject of repeated scrutiny in recent years.  With the military in conflicts overseas for more than a decade and soldiers constantly being redeployed, the base has been criticized both for how its units have operated overseas and for how it treats soldiers at home.  Critics cite high rates of deployment and what they say are related high rates of mental illness, suicide, domestic abuse and other social troubles among soldiers.

Read more: New York Times