News / Middle East

Foley May Have Volunteered For Execution

FILE - This undated file still image from video released April 7, 2011, by GlobalPost, shows James Foley of Rochester, N.H., a freelance contributor for GlobalPost, in Benghazi, Libya.
FILE - This undated file still image from video released April 7, 2011, by GlobalPost, shows James Foley of Rochester, N.H., a freelance contributor for GlobalPost, in Benghazi, Libya.
VOA News

The family of James Foley, the American journalist beheaded by the Islamic State terror group, believes he may have volunteered to be killed to spare the lives of his fellow hostages.

Foley's brother Michael  says he has no doubt that James would have sacrificed himself.

The Foley family was attempting to raise ransom money for the journalist's release, but had nowhere near the $130 million the terrorists had demanded.  

While European nations have paid multi-million dollar ransoms for their kidnapped citizens, the United States does not make ransom payments.     
 
The Islamic State group sent the Foley family an email days ahead of the killing, saying "we will not stop until we quench our thirst for your blood."

Despite the solemn tone of the email, Foley's father, John, said he thought the email signaled an opportunity to negotiate a ransom deal.  The family had not heard from their son's captors in months.  John Foley said he did not realize how "brutal" the Islamic State group is.

The family did not learn about a failed secret U.S. mission to rescue their son until President Barack Obama called them to offer his condolences.

The family says they were "comforted" by a telephone call they received from Pope Francis.  The Foleys are Catholic.

Foley, a freelance journalist, was kidnapped in Syria in 2012.  The Islamic State group has its headquarters in Syria, and that is where Foley is believed to have been beheaded.

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel says the Islamic State group is a terror threat "beyond anything we have seen."  He describes the militants as better trained, armed, organized and financed than any other terrorist organization, including al-Qaida.  

Britain's Home Secretary Teresa May says she is preparing a new law to counter British Muslim extremists.  She says the threat to Britain from jihadists will continue for decades. The Islamic State militant who beheaded Foley spoke with a British accent and is thought to be a British citizen.

You May Like

Scotland Vote Raises Questions of International Law

Experts say self-determination, as defined and protected by international law, confined narrowly to independence movements in process of de-colonization More

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

Conservationists hail ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015 More

Annual Military Exercise Takes on New Meaning for Ukraine Troops

Troops from 15 nations participating in annual event, 'Rapid Trident' in western Ukraine More

Comment Sorting
Comment on this forum (8)
Comments
     
by: Rachel
August 25, 2014 8:39 AM
awfulorv - That's a great idea.
Yet, it is not true that justice eventually prevails over evil. Sometimes it does; other times it does not.


by: toni
August 23, 2014 7:27 PM
@ Charlie Darwin from :UK Islam does not have nothing to do with this. There are 12,000 fighters in Iraq and Syria and they are all from some where else than Iraq or Syria . Even US agencies acknowledge that and they said that the 12000 fighters are from 50 different countries and most of them are most likely not even Arab or Muslim. Who knows who sent these people to the middle east and who are they really working for that is the major question here,and what there goal is. Also just like in Ukraine you ave thousands of foreign mercenaries from Germany,Norway,England,Sweden,US,Serbia,Russia and they are paid to kill and to make war even worse than it is between Russian people and Ukraine People.


by: awfulorv from: phoenix
August 23, 2014 3:02 PM
Mr Foley, I believe, was intent on not allowing the bastards to see him grovel before them, in this he succeeded.
It was a small victory, but was the only way he could show the world that justice will, eventually, triumph over evil. If it's any consolation to his grieving parents, they need to know that they raised a fine, brave young man, and the world, and particularly journalism, can ill afford to lose his kind. I hereby propose that some wealthy person take some of that wealth and found an award to be given, each year, to other brave journalists.


by: Samantha O. from: Canada
August 23, 2014 2:01 PM
the real scary part of this vile Islamic spread to Western countries is the havoc they can have on our children... ISIL already said on twitter that they are in our cities... poised to kill us. but i begin to feel the growing opposition to this vile religion and the overwhelming support and admiration of Israel.


by: Mark from: Virginia
August 23, 2014 12:35 PM
There are people in this world who would think exactly as Foley is thought to have...sacrifice themselves if they think it would spare others from a similar fate. We call them heroes. They are stronger and braver than I think I could ever be, but then again, I have never faced a situation like that, and hope and pray to God that I never do.
On they other side of the coin, I suppose, is the possibility of wanting to die to avoid future pain and punishment. When you are dead, you are no longer in control of what others may do, and beyond the reach of helping others, or seeing others being hurt. Not implying this was the case with Foley. No one knows what was going on in his own head, or what his thought processes were in what seemed to be a terrible existence at the hands of those people.

We all must die one day, it is inevitable. Sadly, we do not get to choose how we meet our end (unless we take that end into our own hands by suicide). Every person has a breaking point, how far they are willing to let things go before they accept the finality of their lives. How calm a person is facing certain death is one example of that.


by: Mervin
August 23, 2014 12:24 PM
Placing journalists and free lance journos at risk and allowing them to operate on their own occasionally with a cameraman, is exactly what news companies have been doing, despite statements to the contrary, and that they accept the risk. In a war zone this practice is a very high risk, considering the number of journalists that have been summarily executed or "disappeared". Governments need to examine at this practice
and regulate it. Failing this, tragedies such as James Foley shall continue.


by: Dr. Rambamrat from: USA
August 23, 2014 12:08 PM
You people are so naïve, where is the PROOF that he was actually beheaded???? WHERE IS IT???? WHERE IS THE VIDEO????
The UK is merely the first country to exploit the alleged beheading of James Foley for domestic political purposes. Others, including the United States, will undoubtedly follow suit. The U.S. is using the questionable incident to announce it will soon begin military operations against ISIS in Syria.

On Saturday a former Toronto Sun journalist, Eric Margolis, questioned the Foley incident.

“Was Foley’s head really cut off? Hard to tell. We have been fed so much fake government war propaganda in recent decades – from Kuwaiti babies thrown from incubators to Saddam’s hidden nukes – that we must be very cautious,” Margolis writes.

The journalist asks if “the orchestrated outrage over Foley [is a] media prelude to direct US intervention in Syria where the jihadists backed by Washington are losing. It’s all very confusing. In Iraq, ISIS are demon terrorists. But across the border in Syria, they are on our side, fighting against the ‘terrorist’ regime of Basher Assad.”

Margolis’ former colleagues, however, are dutifully pushing the government narrative that Foley was in fact beheaded, despite a nearly complete lack of evidence, and paving the way for yet another U.S. military intervention in the Middle East.


by: Charlie Darwin from: UK
August 23, 2014 10:33 AM
Sickening. Tragic. Also the sad naiveté of his parents- Islam is the ultimate evil, cannot be reasoned with, has no compassion. To be unaware is also tragic. Religion of Peace....
I doubt he would volunteer knowing it would make no difference to their brutal beliefs. Those unfortunates in their grip are doomed, no matter what- unless they can escape or be rescued.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctionsi
X
September 18, 2014 2:28 AM
A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctions

A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Belgian Researchers Discover Way to Block Cancer Metastasis

Cancer remains one of the deadliest diseases, despite many new methods to combat it. Modern medicine has treatments to prevent the growth of primary tumor cells. But most cancer deaths are caused by metastasis, the stage when primary tumor cells change and move to other parts of the body. A team of Belgian scientists says it has found a way to prevent that process. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Mogadishu's Flood of Foreign Workers Leaves Somalis Out of Work

Unemployment and conflict has forced many young Somalians out of the country in search of a better life. But a newfound stability in the once-lawless nation has created hope — and jobs — which, some say, are too often being filled by foreigners. Abdulaziz Billow reports from Mogadishu.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.
Video

Video NASA Picks Boeing, SpaceX to Carry Astronauts Into Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, has chosen Boeing and SpaceX companies to build the next generation of spacecraft that will carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station by the year 2017. The deal with private industry enables NASA to end its dependence on Russia to send space crews into low Earth orbit and back. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Future of Ukrainian Former President's Estate Uncertain

More than six months after Ukraine's former President Viktor Yanukovych fled revolution to Russia, authorities have yet to gain control of his palatial estate. Protesters occupy the grounds and opened it to tourists but they are also refusing to turn it over to the state. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Mezhigirya, just north of Kyiv.
Video

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

China says its has sentenced three men to death and one woman to life in prison for a deadly knife attack in March that left more than 30 dead and 140 injured. Beijing says Muslim militants from China's restive western region of Xinjiang carried out the attacks. Now, more than six months after the incident, residents in the city are still coping with the aftermath. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Kunming.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid