“He was an extraordinary son, brother, journalist and person”
A video posted on You Tube by Iraqi terrorist organisation ISIS on Tuesday purported to show the execution of an American Journalist who’s been missing for 2 years.
James Foley, a reporter for US publication Global Post was reporting in Syria when he was kidnapped on November 22, 2012.
The gruesome video begins with a speech by US President Barack Obama announcing that America would be launching air strikes in the troubled region which has seen a humanitarian crisis and violent conflict since the group stepped up attacks in the country in an effort to establish an Islamic state.
The group is also responsible for the murders and displacement of thousands of people from the minority Yazidi tribe in Iraq, many of whom have been slaughtered for refusing to denounce their faith and convert to Islam.
In the video, Foley who is kneeling down in an unidentified location next to a masked and robed man makes a statement, which was most likely a speech prepared for him by his captors in which he tells the American military to stop the air strikes on the region and think about ‘who they are really bombing.”
‘I call on my friends family and loved ones to rise up against my real killers, the US government. For what will happen to me is only a result of their complacency and criminality.
‘My message to my beloved parents: save me some dignity and don’t accept any (unclear, possibly says media) compensation for my death, from the same people who effectively hit the last nail in my coffin with a recent aerial campaign in Iraq.”
The journalist remained calm and stoic during throughout what must have been an awful ordeal, in the full knowledge that he would be killed in the end.
His captors also made him call out his family, particularly his brother who is serving in the US Air Force, concluding the speech by forcing the American citizen to deny his birthright.
‘I call on my brother John, who is a member of the US Air Force, think about what you are doing, think about lives you destroy including those of your own family.
‘I call on you John, think about who made the decision to bomb Iraq recently and kill those people, whoever they may have been.
‘Think John, who did they really kill? Did they think about me, you our family when they made that decision?
‘I died that day John, when your colleagues dropped that bomb on those people – they signed my death certificate.
‘I wish I had more time, I wish I could have the hope of freedom and see my family once again, but that ship has sailed. I guess all in all, I wish I wasn’t American.’
At this point, the robed terrorist speaks in what is suspected to be a British accent, although he has a strong Arabic undertone, accusing the US of meddling in the group’s affairs.
The man said that ISIS had been accepted by ‘some Muslims’ as a state and that any advance on them was an attack on a territory.
He then warned that if the air strikes continue, they would execute another American journalist TIME reporter Steven Joel who went missing last year in August.
American authorities are now trying to verify the authencity of the video. Meanwhile, in a message posted on a Facebook cite set up to campaign for his release, Foley’s mum Diane says, “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.”
“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.”