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Desert Travels - Motorcycle Journeys in the Sahara and West Africa!

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  #1  
Old 5 Jan 2004
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Hostage photos and book

There are some photos of Group 1 (released last May) on the Stern website:
http://www.stern.de/politik/panorama...184&nv=fs&cp=1
#16 is an especially telling pic.

And the Swede in this group, Harald Ickler has written a book:
Entführt in der Wüste
(Kidnapped in the desert)
http://www.amazon.de/exec/obidos/ASI...615039-5010153

Chris S

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Author of Sahara Overland and the Adventure Motorcycling Handbook, among other things

http://www.sahara-overland.com and http://www.adventure-motorcycling.com
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  #2  
Old 5 Jan 2004
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One wonders if the proceeds will be going to pay the ransom put up by the German government?

And the Swede in this group, Harald Ickler has written a book:
Entführt in der Wüste
(Kidnapped in the desert)
Chris S

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  #3  
Old 6 Jan 2004
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Photos are great. #16 the best, but #15 and #21 tell alot about this story, too.

So, any hopes for an English translation of the photo captions, and the book?
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  #4  
Old 6 Jan 2004
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Translation of caption for #16

The rescuers are near, but so far away.

During the first weeks Algerian helicopters circle above the rocky camp every morning. "They must have seen us" says Matheis

ChrisB
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  #5  
Old 6 Jan 2004
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Very interesting, and great photos! Uneasy about profits from the book though.
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  #6  
Old 6 Jan 2004
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when considering "profits" from books, it's worth remembering that if the people were lucky, their employer gave them "unpaid leave" and they had a job to return to. while they were away, bills at home would have accrued.

i read of at least one hostage who lost her job because she was unable to appear at her desk in germany!

also, all lost their big-bucks 4x4 or m/c...

unless you're a well know author of the jeffrey archer/ pulp fiction ilk, you're unlikely to get rich writing books anyway.

ChrisB

PS: Chris Scott: Maybe I've missed it, but how as the money that people donated been spent?
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Old 7 Jan 2004
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"Chris Scott: Maybe I've missed it, but how as the money that people donated been spent?"

YES , good question ! ( and may be good response ? )

Thanks also for the photos .

RR.
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Old 7 Jan 2004
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"PS: Chris Scott: Maybe I've missed it, but how as the money that people donated been spent?"

Good question and I've been regularly chasing up an answer for months. I paid our segment of about a grand into the Swiss account but handing it out has all got 'political'.
As you know it was originally intended to fund the search as no one else was bothering - but certain unscrupulous guys in Alg and Europe took advantage of this.

Then there was PC talk of giving it to Alg earthquake victims or better still, in trust for the children of M Spritzer.

I'm sold a solution is near and will let you all know as soon as I do.

IMHO, I cant begrudge any one of them making money off their terrible experience, even if it is just one person's view. It was a big story in Germanic Europe and I'd love to read it. Has anyone begrudged any number of previous ex-captives' books who had as much spent on them? And like CB, says, the guy wont be retiring any sooner than me!

Chris S
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  #9  
Old 7 Jan 2004
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Actually from photo 7 onwards is from Group 2 by Arjen Hilbers, so I hear.

Chris S
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  #10  
Old 7 Jan 2004
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@ donations

There were some activities following the original aim of the donations. For parts of the claims it may be complicated to get reasonable evidence, but that's the job of the guys dealing with that (and if part is ok, part is not verifyable, pay the first part).

What's still open is the question of an Algerian soldier reported to be killed in the incident on May 13 - does anybody know?

Rumors about money split between the hostages I hope will remain rumors.

Regards,
Peter
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  #11  
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my grain of salt towards suggestions of how to spend the money: In trust for the children of the hostage who died.
ChrisB


[This message has been edited by chris (edited 07 January 2004).]
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  #12  
Old 9 Jan 2004
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Hello,

>Chris Scott: Maybe I've missed it, but how as the money that people donated been spent?"

I'm managing the swiss donation account.

From the money we collected, and which had been transfed from Chris S. account and the Austrian one, only about 500€ had been spent so far for researches in Illizi.

Only yesterday I had been informed that an important, private money advance to the Swiss officials will be paid back in the next days. This was the last missing link for me.

In the next days the coordination with Mr. Auch, who is managing the 2nd german account, should be finished and we will communicate how the money will be spend.
Most of it will be spend for charity.

The managers of the 1st german account allready decided how to use the money:

7000€ for Mr. Zegri, Agence Mezrirene, Illizi for his efforts in the first week of the kidnapping.

The rest: € 8.905,58 as a donation to the Children of Mrs. Spitzer.

I'll communicate the use of the money in this forum as soon as possible.

Yves, www.sahara-info.ch

[This message has been edited by Yves (edited 08 January 2004).]
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  #13  
Old 22 Jan 2004
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I've heard from someone who has just read Harald Icklers book.

"Not really a lot of new information. He says they [the group of 17 released in May following an army raid] were not really liberated, it was just a show meant to make the hostages believe they were liberated. Ickler also suggests that one of his group might have been working for the German secret service"

Another book is due end of February by Rainer Bracht
177 Tage Angst. Tagebuch einer Entführung (177 days of Fear. Diary of a ¿Hostage ?)

Chris S

[This message has been edited by Chris Scott (edited 23 January 2004).]
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