Jill Carroll: We watched Oprah

“We” meaning her, one of her jihadi kidnappers — and his wife and kid:

The room was small, with furniture that was fancy by Iraqi standards – two couches and an overstuffed chair covered in dark velvet with gold trim. The TV and its satellite box were in the corner.

Abu Rasha – a big man whom I would come to see as an organizer of my guards – lay down on one of the sofas. His wife and one of his children sat next to him on a chair.

Then Abu Rasha handed me the remote. “Whatever you want,” he said.

How do you channel surf with the mujahideen? I asked myself that question as I flipped from one show to another, trying to act casual. Politics was out. News was out. Anything that might show even a flash of skin was out.

Finally, I found Channel 1 from Dubai, and Oprah was on. OK, good, Oprah, I thought. No naked women, no whatever, she’s not in hijab, but it’s OK.

The show was about people who had had really bad things happen to them, and had survived, and had hope. One woman came on who had been a model in the ’70s and had breast cancer, and now she’s a famous photographer. It really had an impact on me. Oprah talked about how people get through these things, and I thought, well, this is sort of prophetic, maybe.

If there was any doubt Oprah was going to have her on for a guest shot, there isn’t anymore.

Two other tidbits from the article: her kidnappers screaming “jihad!” orgasmically as they drove away with her, and the fact that it sure does sound like she was the victim of a set-up orchestrated by someone inside the office of Adnan al-Dulaimi. Who remains to this day a major Iraqi Sunni politician and power broker.

They found the numbers of several high-ranking Iraqi pols programmed in Zarqawi’s cell phone, you’ll recall. None of them were ever named, as far as I know, but I think it’s safe to say we have a leading suspect.