GlobalPost CEO Phil Balboni says the Islamic State video, that shows the beheading of journalist James Foley, came after a threat was made to the family last week. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) GlobalPost CEO Phil Balboni said on Wednesday (August 20) the Islamic State video, that shows the beheading of journalist James Foley, came after a threat was made to the family last week. "On Wednesday night of last week, the Foley family received an e-mail from the kidnappers that was full of rage against the United States for the bombing. And they stated that they would execute Jim," Balboni said. "We communicated quickly -- or as quickly as we could -- with the captors, pleaded with them for mercy. Explained to them that Jim was an innocent journalist... had done no harm to the Syrian people and indeed cared deeply about them, and asked them to give us time to find another means. Sadly they showed no mercy to Jim." The video prompted widespread horror that could push Western powers into further action against the group. U.S. officials said on Wednesday that intelligence analysts had concluded that the Islamic State video, titled "A Message to America," was authentic. It also showed images of another U.S. journalist, Steven Sotloff, whose fate the group said depends on how the United States acts in Iraq. The gruesome video presented Obama with bleak options that could define American involvement in Iraq and the public reaction to it, potentially dragging him further into a conflict he built much of his presidency on ending. Obama called the beheading of Foley "an act of violence that shocked the conscience of the entire world" and said the militants had killed innocent civilians, subjected women and children to torture, rape and slavery and targeted Muslims, Christians and religious minorities. The video's message was unambiguous, warning of greater retaliation to come against Americans following nearly two weeks of U.S. air strikes that have pounded militant positions and halted the advance of Islamic State, which until this month had captured a third of Iraq with little resistance.