James Foley, one of a hundred journalists who came to Syria to report on the suffering of the Syrian people, was apparently killed by ISIS days ago. According to the Free James Foley website, Foley was 40 years old.
This came after a video was posted online, by an ISIS related account on YouTube, showing the beheading of U.S. journalist James Foley. After the journalist’s bloody death, his killer threatens to kill another American if President Barack Obama doesn’t end military operations in Iraq.
The video which entitled “A Message to America (from the ISIS)” shows an armed man dressed in black, identified himself as one of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria members, and identifying another man kneeling next to him as “James Wright Foley.” Foley was then shown being beheaded.
This is not the first time for ISIS has orchestrated such executions, and they have a knack for beheadings! Foley, as well, was not the first journalist to be killed recently in Syria. According to “Committee To Protect Journalists” (CPJ), at least the 70th journalist killed since the beginning of Syrian war, and that more than 20 are still missing.
Foley Was Missed in Syria since November 2012
Foley, who went missing in Syria more than a year ago (November 2012), and according to May 2013 report from the Columbia Journalism Review claimed that he was probably being held near Damascus.
National Security Council: the Video is “Authentic”
The National Security Council spokeswoman, Caitlin Hayden, said that the video is “authentic.” She also added: “The intelligence community is working as quickly as possible to determine its authenticity. If genuine, we are appalled by the brutal murder of an innocent American journalist and we express our deepest condolences to his family and friends. We will provide more information when it is available.”
The White House spokesman Eric Schultz claimed that Obama got a report about the video, and “he will continue to receive regular updates.”
What Was in the Video?
YouTube removed the posted video – for violation of its policies – a little while after its publishing on Tuesday, August 19. But its brutal scenes stick in the minds of who saw it, and although no longer on Youtube: it still exists on some other internet websites.
The ISIS terrorist said in the video: “This is James Wright Foley, an American citizen of your country.” In a sign that he was talking to America, he also added: “As a government, you have been at the forefront of the aggression towards the Islamic State. You have plotted against us and have gone far out of your way to find reasons to interfere in our affairs. Today, your military air force is attacking us daily in Iraq; your strikes have caused casualties among Muslims.”
“Any attempt by you, Obama, to deny Muslims liberty & safety under the Islamic caliphate, will result in the bloodshed of your people,” the ISIS terrorist added.
Foley also said some words in the video: “I call on my friends, family members and loved ones to rise up against my real killers, the U.S. government.”
Another man was shown in the video, believed to be the American journalist Steven Sotloff, who is a freelance journalist who went missing in Syria in August 2013, near the Syria-Turkey border. Sotloff is a contributor to Time and Foreign Policy magazines.
The ISIS terrorist says that Sotloff’s future “depends” on President Obama’s “next decision.”
The terrorist is Briton
U.S. and British intelligence officials claimed they are working hurriedly to analyze the video in hopes of distinguishing Foley’s killer. The ISIS member was speaking fluent English and the U.K.’s foreign secretary suggested he might be British.
U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron called the video “shocking and depraved.” He got back from his vacation to discuss the threat posed by ISIS in Iraq and Syria. Cameron said: “We have not identified the individual but it looks increasingly likely that it is a British citizen. This is deeply shocking. We know that far too many British citizens have traveled to Iraq and traveled to Syria to take part in extremism.”
Cameron confirmed that ISIS has gathered more than 400 U.K. nationals as fighters. A little earlier, British police also claimed they were looking into pro-ISIS leaflets spread in central London, according to rumor, which encourage Muslims (especially Sunnis) to pledge allegiance to ISIS.
Foley’s Parents Lost Their Last Light
Foley’s parents told AFP last year that they were still expecting for the safe return of their son, the oldest of five children.
Foley’s mother, Diane, used the social media to praise and mourn her son with an emotional statement: “We have never been prouder of our son Jim. He gave his life trying to expose the world to the suffering of the Syrian people,” she wrote in a post on the Free James Foley Facebook page.
She also added: “We implore the kidnappers to spare the lives of the remaining hostages. Like Jim, they are innocents. They have no control over American government policy in Iraq, Syria or anywhere in the world. We thank Jim for all the joy he gave us. He was an extraordinary son, brother, journalist and person. Please respect our privacy in the days ahead as we mourn and cherish Jim.”