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Lebanon / Higgins Kidnapping #319854

CBS Evening News for Thursday, Feb 18, 1988
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(Studio: Dan Rather) Group called Islamic Revolutionary Brigades reported claiming responsibility for Lieutenant Colonel William Higgins' kidnapping in Lebanon. Lebanese militia leader quoted regarding group's holding other United States hostages in Beirut. President Reagan quoted. Reagan aides quoted. Reports introd.

(DC: Terence Smith) Reagan reported intimating United States considering direct mil. response to Higgins' kidnapping. [REAGAN - says will do all can.] [State Department spokesperson Charles REDMAN - comments on situation.] Secretary of State George Shultz quoted. [SHULTZ - says Beirut has become terrorist haven.] Father William F. Higgins reported dying of heart failure without being cognizant of son's capture. Reagan reported calling wife Robin. [Bro.-in-law Harold FISHER - comments on situation.] White House officials quoted regarding Americans being assigned to duty in Lebanon.

(London, England: Tom Fenton) Amal members shown helping United Nations troops seal off area where Higgins was taken. [Voice of Lebanese radio BDCSTR. - says org. claims Higgins member of CIA.] [State Department spokesperson Charles REDMAN - denies association with CIA.] Lebanese President Amin Gemayel quoted. [Justice minister Nabih BERRI - says will try to help win Higgins' release.] [UN undersecy Marrack GOULDING - comments on situation.] French government reported removing officers from UN observer force. [UN force spokesperson Timor GOKSEL - comments on situation.] Factions' relations noted complex; Amal, PLO (Palestine Liberation Organization) and pro-Iranian fanatics mentioned. British terrorism experts quoted.

(Studio: Dan Rather, Doug Tunnell) Lebanese military activity discussed. UN sources quoted regarding presence of ships off Lebanese coast. Pentagon noted refusing comment on ships in area. Search for Higgins mentioned. Hypothetical military rescue of Higgins from south Lebanon illustration Israeli and sympathetic Lebanese aid mentioned. Rescue attempt risks recognized. Islamic fundamentalists noted most ruthless of captors. Expert quoted.

Fenton, Tom;
Rather, Dan;
Smith, Terence

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