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JB: You had an agenda, he had an agenda. You were pretty skilled, though he was too. How did that play out? Did you ever have a sense that he was trying to manipulate you?
KR: Yes. He was a smart cookie.
Negotiations on the first day led to an opportunity for authorities to talk with one of the hostages and the delivery of an AM/FM radio to the tower late in the afternoon. Later, Wassenaar discovered that the radio had a listening device within it Trust was seriously damaged.
KR: I think he kind of knew from the way I explained to him, there was a bug. They picked up on him, after one of my phone calls, saying, uh oh, she thinks sheís won. I donít recall exactly what he said, but it was about my getting the better of him because I was hearing him
JB: In the negotiations that you do, unlike other negotiations, if you donít like the people you can not walk out. How do you deal with that?
KR: We get in a lot of situations that we must stay until resolution. You do your job.
JB: You didnít like these guys?
KR: I didnít like them. I didnít trust them. I was for the hostages. But more than that, I was there for the ideal situation, everybody was hoping. Theyíre not upstanding citizens, and would the world be a better place? I donít know. Itís not my question. I think itís a higher being than that that has to answer that question.
JB: Itís a different type of negotiation than most of us ever deal with in that the stakes are life or death.
KR: Yes, my field deals with death. The less we can have of that the better for everybody, even the prisoners. I would rather it come out this way with everybody alive.
JB: Will still be a hostage negotiator?
JB: So when that happens, you drop everything and respond?
KR: On call all the time.
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Copyright © 2004, John D. Baker
Copyright © 2004, The Negotiator Magazine