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Heroes Among Us:

Insights into Political Prisoners and Hostages

What happens when someone is taken as a political prisoner, a hostage, or otherwise illegally detained? Does the United States government have a one size fits all policy to free these people? What impact does it have on the families and who, if anyone, is held accountable? These, and many other, questions were explored at this global community conversation on the world of political prisoners and hostages. Headlined by Paul Rusesabagina's compelling story of capture and illegal detention by the Rwandan government, mere decades after playing a critical role in saving the lives of thousands of Rwandans during the 1994 genocide. In addition, a strong panel consisting of Beth Cooper, Former Senior Advisor for the Special Presidential Envoy for Hostages, Diane Foley, Founder of the Foley Foundation and mother of slain journalist Jim Foley, as well as Zoya Fakhoury, co-Founder of the Amer Foundation and daughter of Amer Fakhoury who was illegally detained by the Lebanese Government, provided critical insights into the process of bringing American's home and the challenges that individual cases pose. 

Throughout these moving conversations, audiences will take away the insights necessary to better understand when, where, and why Americans are taken hostage, as well as how to think critically about international travel. While many places around the world provide safe and inspiring travel, it remains important for people to understand where their American passports may make them governmental or criminal targets. The number one takeaway for any international travel is to immediately notify the U.S. government if a fellow traveler goes missing. 

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