It is also colossally stupid to be hiking along the border of a country where US troops are still involved in combat operations and another country that is actively trying to destabilize the first country and considers the US an enemy.
I doubt that they were spying, but they were probably doing some stupid peacenik sort of thing. “Sarah Shourd” sounds vaguely middle eastern. Maybe she thought she knew the terrain. Actually, aren’t they lib christians or something?
Do you really believe they were just hiking? How many people do you know who go hiking? How many go hiking in Iraq along the border with Iran?