Forgiveness and freedom: Terry Waite

If you were taken hostage for five years, held in solitary confinement, and subjected to mock executions, could you ever forgive your captors? This is one of the big questions tackled in the new Policy Forum Pod with Terry Waite CBE. Listen to the podcast here:

Terry Waite is the co-founder of Hostage UK, an organisation that provides support to those taken hostage and their families. But Waite is perhaps better known for his own, terrible, experience being taken hostage.

In 1987, while working as a hostage negotiator for the Archbishop of Canterbury, Waite travelled to Lebanon to negotiate the release of hostages there. While in Beirut, he was captured himself and spent almost five years in captivity, four of which were in solitary confinement.

During his incarceration, he was blindfolded, beaten, and subjected to mock executions. He lived much of the time chained to a wall in a room without natural light. He was finally released in 1991.

To find out more about Hostage UK visit:

To read Helen Sullivan’s piece on empathy in public policy discussed in this podcast, go to:

To listen to Terry Waite’s public talk at the ANU Crawford School: 

Back to Resources

Press Ctrl+C to copy