Israeli Soldier Outsmarts Hamas Captors
Note: The following story is fictitious, it is presented as a mental exercise for amusement only.
An Israeli soldier is kidnapped in Gaza by Hamas terrorists. After a lengthy, brutal interrogation, his captors tell him, “We will allow you to make one more statement. If your statement is false, you will be hanged. If your statement is true, you will be drowned.” How did the soldier respond in order to save his life?
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Solution: The soldier said, “I will be hanged.” If they want to hang him, the sentence is true, so they will not be able to hang him. He could also not be drowned because his statement would then be false, and they can’t drown him if his statement is false. So the captors had to hold him alive until a release was negotiated. (Adapted from Don Quixote, by Cervantes.)