Sara Miran, a Kurdish American real estate developer, was kidnapped while she was working in Iraq in 2014. She was held hostage by an Iranian-backed militia and eventually escaped with the help of a metal spoon. Miran’s harrowing story had been buried among secret Iranian documents, which were then leaked to The Intercept.
On a human level, Miran’s story is an anatomy of a kidnapping, an underreported scourge on unstable countries like Iraq. Thousands of Iraqis and foreigners living and working in the country have been kidnapping victims since the U.S. invasion in 2003, many disappearing without a trace even after ransoms have been paid. Most kidnappings in Iraq are conducted by militias and criminal gangs for money, but Miran’s kidnapping was one of the unusual cases that had both political and financial overtones. Miran is also one of the few high-profile kidnapping victims in Iraq to escape, survive, and tell her story.
“And yet despite millions in resources, much of which the state cannot figure out how to spend, Harmony remained unhoused at the foot of the iconic Coca-Cola sign above the Walgreens at Five Points — in the heart of Atlanta — as she has on and off for years, in a state of abject human degradation, with all of this misery taking place less than 100 yards from the very steps of Georgia’s Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities headquarters.”
“The rise and fall of the ultimate doomsday prepper.”
“Erasure doesn’t have to be an act. It can be a process too.”
“A public defender’s lonely fight against family separation.”
When a prosecutor states that she won’t seek the death penalty in any cases, is she exercising prosecutorial judgement or abdicating it? Aramis Ayala and the state of Florida don’t agree.
Rather than deterring unlawful entry, US border policy has helped create a humanitarian crisis, where untold numbers of migrants die or fall ill in the scorching Arizona desert. When concerned citizens, like Ajo’s Scott Walker, form groups to help gather migrants’ bodily remains and offer water and medical aid to the living, officials treats these humanitarians as criminals who help enable unlawful entry and commit conspiracy. And people keep dying in the desert.
Even as the people protesting the Dakota Access pipeline became suspicious about other activists’ loyalties, a security firm successfully planted a bearded ex-Marine undercover to gather intelligence about the protesters. Besides fueling paranoia, did the operative’s activities change anything?
Gang members in El Salvador are considered ruined, beyond redemption. So what’s life like for a gang member who manages to get out?
Wendell Lindsey is serving life prison for murdering his daughter. Maybe he did, or maybe he’s also a victim — of junk science, personal vendettas, weak investigation, and bad attorneys.