The families of Americans taken hostage in hostile regions around the world live in between hope and despair, themselves held captive by the greed or ideology of an enemy they do not know and cannot reason with, but the assumption that U.S. government is bringing to bear all its might and power to secure the release of their loved is at least a source of comfort.

Now that assumption has been called into question with the shocking revelations of the widow of an American seized in Pakistan who tells the CBS news program, “60 Minutes,” in a Sunday interview that she pleaded with the State Department to “do something.”

“You're the strongest country in the entire world – do something!” Elaine Weinstein says she told Department officials, after her husband, Warren, was taken by al-Qaeda members on August 13, 2011 in Lahore, Pakistan where he was a contractor working on increasing productivity in developing economies.

Mrs. Weinstein adds, “And they did nothing.”

Warren Weinstein was killed in a U.S. drone strike on January 14, 2015 in what is termed a “signature strike” launched based on evidence that suggests without certainty that a target is present.

His widow told the New York Times, when President Obama called to inform her of her husband’s death and offer his condolences, she “wanted to scream back at him.”

“What I would have liked to say and what I said are two different stories. I couldn’t say, “Where the hell were you when I needed your help?” she said.

Mrs. Weinstein attempted to ransom her husband on her own, raising $243,000 after spending years in online negotiations with his captors, and she says although payment to a third-party is disapproved by the U.S. government, the FBI did investigate the middle-man in the transaction and thought him “likely” to deliver the money as arranged.

When al-Queda did not honor its promise, she turned to Secretary of State John Kerry who she said did nothing to help.

Mrs. Weinstein has said she hopes her husband’s death will “prompt the U.S. Government to take its responsibilities seriously and establish a coordinated and consistent approach to supporting hostages and their families.”



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