Kidnappers Suspected Centanni Was a Spy, Threatened To Kill Him


The kidnappers who held two Fox News journalists hostage for two weeks suspected that correspondent Steve Centanni was a spy and at one point threatened to kill him.

In an hour-long appearance on Fox News’s On The Record Greta Van Susteren, Centanni’s fellow hostage Olaf Wiig said that after five days of captivity the kidnappers began asking about Centanni’s background. Wiig was being questioned alone and he and one interrogator discussed asked him what he knew about Islam. Not much, Wiig replied, saying "It's probably remiss of me to have spent so much time working in the Middle East and know so little about it. Can you teach me a little about it?"

There then followed "a discussion about how the problems of the Muslim world and the West could be solved if the West converted to Islam."

The conversation suddenly darkened. The kidnappers were suspicious that Centanni was the first journalist on the scene when the U.S. military in Iraq killed Saddam Hussein’s sons, Uday and Qusay (a fact listed openly on Centanni’s bio on Fox News Website.)

"They told me that they believed he was CIA, FBI, an informer for the IDF, the Israeli Defense Force, that he was there as a spy…that it was him that had informed the American military on Uday and Qusay."

Wiig was told that as a New Zealander, he was at little risk, but "Unfortunately for you, you're with an American and a very, very dangerous American, and we're going to kill him."

Wiig tried to explain that Centanni was just a journalist doing his job and trying to tell the story of the Palestinian people.

After Wiig hustled out of the room, Centanni asked what the kidnappers discussed. . Centanni says Wiig didn’t want to scare him and said "`Oh, it was basically just a big pep talk on Islam, actually.’ he didn't really tell me anything about that they were determined to kill me.’"