WARNING: GRAPHIC IMAGES. A masked militant claims the murder is in retaliation for American airstrikes against the Islamic State militants in Iraq. Missing since Nov. 22, 2012, Foley appears to be forced to read an anti-American statement before he is beheaded in the gruesome five-minute clip. His family confirmed his death late Tuesday evening.
The militants then placed Foley's head on his back after executing him.
In an unspeakable act of savagery, an American photojournalist was beheaded in a video released Tuesday by Islamic State terrorists who claimed the killing was retaliation for U.S. air strikes against the group in Iraq.
In the nearly five-minute video, titled “A Message to America,” a masked executioner is seen severing James Foley’s head with a knife in a sadistic act of revenge.
The barbaric footage was posted on YouTube less than 24 hours after the marauding army of evil, also known as ISIS, vowed: “We will drown all of you in blood.”
Foley, 40, of New Hampshire, a freelance reporter for the Boston-based GlobalPost, was abducted in Syria 22 months ago while covering that country’s civil war.
“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,” Foley’s heartbroken mother, Diane, of Rochester, N.H., said in a statement posted on Facebook Tuesday night.
“We thank Jim for all the joy he gave us,” the mother added. “He was an extraordinary son, brother, journalist and person.”
GlobalPost journalist James Foley talks about being captured in Libya and the killing of a photographer in his group
(The Boston Globe) An interview with journalist James Foley, back from Libya (Video by Jonathan Wiggs/Globe Staff, produced by Lane Turner/Globe Staff)
In the video, the bloodthirsty jihadist group — which invaded Iraq from Syria and now controls a large swath in the northwest part of Iraq — called out President Obama for authorizing air strikes to stop its expanion and desire for genocide.
After killing the handcuffed Foley, a cloaked terrorist left the victim’s head on the small of his back. The menacing executioner, dressed head-to-toe in black, had a chilling message for Obama.
Grabbing another captured U.S. journalist, Steven Sotloff, 31, of Miami, a contributor for Time magazine, the killer stared into the camera and vowed in what sounded like a British accent, “The life of this American citizen, Obama, depends on your next decision.”
Obama was briefed on the video while aboard Air Force One as he jetted from Washington to Martha’s Vineyard to resume his vacation. The President is expected make a public statement about the killing on Wednesday.
The video started off with a clip from Obama’s Aug. 7 televised address in which the commander-in-chief revealed he’d authorized air strikes to stop the slaughter of tens of thousands of members of the Yazidi religious sect who were trapped on a mountain in northwest Iraq.
The footage then shifted to Foley. His head was shaved and he was dressed in an orange prison jumpsuit, similar to those worn by Guantanamo Bay detainees. He was kneeling to the right of his killer against the backdrop of a desert. It was not clear where the grisly video was filmed.
Foley was forced to read a letter that castigated America for its involvement in helping the Iraqi Army and Kurdish fighters oppose the Islamic State’s effort to conquer all of Iraq and set up a caliphate.
“I call on my friends, family and loved ones to rise up against my real killers, the U.S. government,” said Foley, reading the letter. “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 some minor compensation for my death from the same people who effectively hit the last nail in my coffin with their recent aerial campaign in Iraq.”