This is a passage from the book “The New Middle East” by Paul Danahar, a well-respected journalist who has spent many years in the Middle East. In the wake of the twin bombings in Beirut in October 1983 that killed three hundred people including two hundred and forty one US servicemen, President Reagan decided to pull out the US troops. The rest is from the book:

Who carried out the bombings has never been discovered but they were blamed on Islamic groups supported by Iran. President Ronald Reagan pulled his troops out of Lebanon. Westerners including academics, aid workers and journalists who were left in the city became the prey of kidnappers who were again said to be linked to Iran. Some were held for years. The CIA station chief William Buckley was kidnapped and tortured to death. A year after his kidnap four Soviets were kidnapped. One was killed within weeks.

American attempt to get their hostages back led to the Iran-Contra scandal in which senior US officials sold arms to Iran, despite an embargo, to try to get their people released. The Soviets according to information obtained by the journalist Bob Woodward, used a different approach to get their three people freed within a month of capture.

The KGB in Lebanon …. seized a relative of a leader of the radical Muslim Hezbollah, had castrated him, stuffed his testicles in his mouth, shot him in the head and sent the body back to Hezbollah. The KGB included a message that other members of the Party of God would die in a similar manner if the three Soviets were not released. Shortly afterwards the three …. were let out a few blocks from their embassy.