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

    Video Democrats Clinton, Kaine Offer 'Very Different Vision' Than Trump

    Party's presumptive presidential nominee, her vice presidential pick deliver optimistic message in Florida as they campaign for first time together

    Turkey Wants Pakistan to Close Down institutions, Businesses Linked to Gulen

    Thousands of Pakistani students are enrolled in Gulen's commercial network of around two dozen institutions operating in Pakistan for over two decades

    AU Passport A Work in Progress

    Who will get the passport and what the benefits are still need to be worked out

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    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.
    In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movementi
    X
    July 22, 2016 11:49 AM
    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Poor Residents in Cleveland Not Feeling High Hopes of Republican Convention

    With the Republican Party's National Convention underway in Cleveland, Ohio, delegates and visitors are gathered in the host city's downtown - waiting to hear from the party's presidential candidate, Donald Trump. But a few kilometers from the convention's venue, Cleveland's poorest residents are not convinced Trump or his policies will make a difference in their lives. VOA's Ramon Taylor spoke with some of these residents as well as some of the Republican delegates and filed this report.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video With Yosemite as Backdrop, Obama Praises National Parks

    Last month, President Barack Obama and his family visited some of the most beautiful national parks in the U.S. Using the majestic backdrop of a towering waterfall in California's Yosemite National Park, Obama praised the national park system which celebrates its 100th anniversary this year. He talked about the importance of America’s “national treasures” and the need to protect them from climate change and other threats. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Counter-Islamic State Coalition Plots Next Steps

    As momentum shifts against Islamic State in Iraq, discussions are taking place about the next steps for driving the terrorist group from its final strongholds. Secretary of State John Kerry is hosting a counter-IS meeting at the State Department, a day after defense ministers from more than 30 countries reviewed and agreed upon a course of action. VOA Pentagon correspondent Carla Babb reports.
    Video

    Video Russia's Participation at Brazil Olympic Games Still In Question

    The International Olympic Committee has delayed a decision on whether to ban all Russian teams from competing in next month's Olympic Games in Brazil over allegations of an elaborate doping scheme. The World Anti-Doping Agency recently released an independent report alleging widespread doping by Russian athletes at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. So far, only Russian track and field athletes have been barred from the Summer Games in Brazil. VOA's Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.
    Video

    Video Millennials Could Determine Who Wins Race to White House

    With only four months to go until Americans elect a new president, one group of voters is getting a lot more attention these days: those ages 18 to 35, a generation known as millennials. It’s a demographic that some analysts say could have the power to decide the 2016 election. But a lot depends on whether they actually turn out to vote. VOA’s Alexa Lamanna reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora