‘It was misery’: Former hostage describes time in captivity


(NewsNation) —  Very few people will ever understand what it’s truly like to be held hostage in a foreign country, and the situation is getting more dire by the day for Americans detained in Russia.

There are currently 59 other U.S. nationals being held hostage or wrongfully detained, according to the James Foley Foundation.

Similar to Trevor Reed, former U.S. hostage Barry Rosen lived to tell his story and is now speaking out for those who can’t.

“It was misery. Held in darkness, threatened with weapons to my head. They counted to 10 and told me if I did not answer that I was a spy and signed an agreement, they would shoot me immediately. Look, the Iranians know what they’re doing. We have to know what we’re doing. Stop this ridiculousness with dealing with Iran on the JCPOA, unless the hostages are freed immediately. They cannot be staying in Iran under the circumstances, and renegotiate with them in Vienna. It’s a joke. It’s obscene,” Rosen said during an appearance Thursday on NewsNation’s “Banfield.”

Rosen was held hostage for 444 days by Iranian militants.

He says he remembers counting, day by day, and questioning if he would ever get out and that other Americans held hostage are living under “unbelievably inhumane situations.”

“I am tremendously disappointed with the State Department, with the president and with Robert Malley. Things are not moving along the way they should be,” Rosen said.

NewsNation spoke with another former hostage, Tyler Jacob, who described a very different experience while being held captive.

Tyler Jacob is an American teacher from Minnesota who was living in Ukraine before he was detained by Russian forces for 10 days.

“They treated me a lot better than they treated him (Trevor Reed), the way it looks like,” Jacob said during an appearance on “NewsNation PRIME.”

“They fed me well. And when they pulled me up to, like, question me, they went and paid out of their own pocket to buy me like a hamburger, lattes, things like that. So I think I had a special kind of … circumstance.”

Jacob was told that the reason he was being detained, initially, was because he didn’t show his passport, but he later learned it was because Russian forces thought he was a spy.

During his time in captivity, Jacob was allowed to send one message per day to let his wife know that he was safe.

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