Jill Carroll is Free

BEIRUT — Jill Carroll has been released in Baghdad. After nearly three months, during which she was in the thoughts of every reporter in Baghdad, Jill is now in the hands of the Americans and will soon be on her way home to her family. This is the best news I’ve heard in a long time.

art.jill.carroll.afp.giI’ve heard she was first released to the the Iraqi Islamic Party before she was taken to safety in the Green Zone.

UPDATE 3:29:57 PM +0300: It was the Iraqi Islamic Party who received her. The Washington Post seems to have the most details so far. And U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice just gave Jill’s release a shoutout at the summit over Iran’s nuclear program.

UPDATE 3/31/06 2:27:57 AM +0300: The story I did for TIME.com on Jill’s release is up. And the previous story I did when she was first kidnapped is here.

The right-wing nuts already are saying she should have been killed, was treasonous, should be banned from coming home and, in general, spouting their usual mishmash of uninformed — but passionately certain — lies, prejudices and speculation. It’s sickening. (A favorite trope is that because she said her captors treated her well, she must have been in on the kidnapping.)

They base this on an video in which she says the mujahdeen will win because they’re smarter and that the war is wrong, etc. What’s weirdest is their carping on the fact that she was still wearing her hijab and Arabic dress when she was filmed in the Iraqi Islamic Party headquarters. People: She didn’t have any other clothes. And the IIP is a conservative Sunni party. It would have been very disrespectful to the people who were trying to get her home to whip off her hijab in their offices. Notably, in the pics on the Washington Post and New York Times site, she’s pretty obviously wearing a military T-shirt. Man, do these people even consider some of the issues they slam people for?