After experiencing brutal international criticism for engineering a swap of imprisoned members of the Taliban for the release of an Italian reporter who had been kidnapped in Afghanistan, Italy has figured out how to ensure such controversy will not occur again. Italy's foreign minister, Massimo D'Alema, has proposed that NATO and the UN develop guidelines for how how states should respond to hostage crises. According to the foreign minister, "it's time to explore the possibility of guidelines shared on an international level, a code of shared behaviour" that would create rules for when states would negotiate the release of kidnapped citizens.
The idiocy of this is simply staggering. The Taliban have, since the deal with the Italian government, seized two French aid workers and their three Afghani companions in an effort to extract similar concessions from France. Furthermore, the Taliban reneged on the deal, only releasing the reporter and not the driver and translator who had also been seized (and have since been beheaded). It's bad enough when states capitulate to kidnappers and terrorists, but creating pre-existing guidelines would simply establish the legitimacy of the seizures and ensure that more would occur.
At least the cheese-eating surrender monkeys have some company.