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thedrifter
12-20-05, 05:35 AM
Hope dwindles as new execution video is released
Monday, December 19, 2005 - by Dan Fiorucci

Eagle River, Alaska - There has still been no confirmation that the man seen in a horrifying terrorist execution in Iraq was an Alaskan. Eagle River resident Ronald Schulz disappeared around Thanksgiving while working as a security consultant in Iraq. Efforts are underway to verify the terrorists' claim.

In Eagle River, there is tremendous support for our troops, and for all the Americans working to reconstruct Iraq. But tonight there is new evidence that another American has paid a very high price for that mission. A recent video shows a man, purportedly Ron Schulz, being executed by his captors, the so-called Islamic Army of Iraq.

The video showing a man being executed is not the way Ron Schulz’s family wants to remember him. They prefer photos of Schulz, the avid outdoorsman, enjoying a day at Crow Pass.

Tonight at Schulz’s home in Eagle River, his Marine Corps banner still hung proudly in the window and friends continued to look after his property.

“It hit home because he lives on my street,” said Mark Kelliher, Schulz’s neighbor.

Schulz’s neighbor, who earlier this year was serving with the Marines in Iraq said contractors like Schulz were doing a lot of good in that troubled country.

“Being a retired soldier, I feel very sorry for him and his family, being a contractor over there taking greater risks than we were, I have a lot of sense of pride that he was doing the right thing for America. And it is very unfortunate that the insurgents got him, the bad guys got him,” said Kelliher (left).

For the past 11 days Schulz’s family in North Dakota has been clinging to the hope he’s still alive. But the group that says it kidnapped Schulz, the Islamic Army in Iraq, has a very violent track record.

They set a deadly roadside bomb that killed 10 Marines earlier this month and the IAI also claimed responsibility for the killing of four American contractors and the burning of their bodies in April 2004.

“We’re working on the assumption that he’s alive and until we get confirmed that he's not, that’s what we’re hoping for,” Julie Schultz, Ronald Schultz’s sister, said in an interview earlier this month (right).

A family that hopes photos of Ron Schulz enjoying Alaska are not the last happy photos they’ll see of their brother. Once again, the family’s fading hopes are tempered by the IAI’s violent track record. In addition to killing 10 Marines earlier this month, they also claimed responsibility for the killing of 14 Marines in August, among them Lance Cpl. Grant Fraser of Anchorage.

Obviously there is still no proof that this latest Alaskan, Ronald Schulz, has been killed. It was 11 days ago that the Islamic Army of Iraq threatened to kill Schulz and indications are that the video of that execution was shot 10 days ago, at about the very time his family went on TV to ask Schulz’s captors for mercy.

Ellie