ISIS beheads American journalist

But you don’t you think it’s disrespectful to post a screen cap from the video of this man on his knees, about to die? Also, why spread imagery from an ISIS terror video, isn’t that exactly what they want? Wrong on so many levels…


I chose to watch the video. Hopefully that doesn’t make me a horrible person. If we’re going to spend the next news cycle discussing and imagining what happened, I figure I may as well face the horrific truth.

Warning: my next paragraph will graphically describe/discuss the contents of the video:

I found it strange how ISIS actually edited out the actual beheading. You see the murderer put the knife to his throat and momentarily begin to start sawing but, before you see any blood, the video cuts away to a shot of the now decapitated body with the head resting on the back. I suspect this is because the murderers actually struggle to decapitate the head. In effect, it seems they edited out the scariest and most intimidating part of the video - the moment where a life vanishes - because it took them awhile. I don’t know… Far worse than seeing the dead body at the end of the video is seeing Foley’s tensed facial expression as he realizes what is coming… Fucking bastards. Ugh.

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Well, Iraqis should have never let our oil somehow end up under their sand.

/bitter sarcasm


I truly appreciate the warning




We have been messing up most of that area for the last 30+ years.

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This goes much farther back than neocon naivete or even the discovery of oil in the Middle East. The Middle East is both a cradle of civilization itself and the crossroads of several other cradles of civilization, and as such has been riven by war since the beginning of recorded history. ISIS is far from the first band of Middle Eastern religious zealots to lash out violently against the economic/cultural hegemon of its day. And it’s unlikely they will be the last.


In modern context I don’t understand the point of beheadings. During the Middle Ages and before I can see the scare tactic in placing the head of one’s enemy on a stake for everyone to see, now your “enemy” is on a different continent. I agree with the other poster that this is probably aimed less at foreign policy than making themselves look tough.

The speech given before the beheading is interesting, particularly the way in which it seems to completely admit that the US airstrikes have been effective and caused ISIS serious casualties. The messaging is essentially “Stop bombing, it’s working really well. If you bomb us more, we’ll kill this second guy.”


To those who don’t understand the message that video is trying to transmit; it is simple:

“You come to our land to fuck with us, we kill you. Don’t come to our land. Full stop.”

It is that simple. There are no complexities or metaphors or double meanings. Get the fuck out. To misunderstand the message is to undervalue the death of this man. An horrible death.
Now we can discuss about politics, history, morals or weapons of mass destruction until the whole world dies in a fire.

Fuck, I come regularly to BB to get my doses of wonderful things and activism, to get to write “Chris, what an asshole” and make cheap jokes, but I will never get to get accustomed to people derailing post comments into the realm of semantics and abstractions. The elephant is in the room, and its eating the damn sofa, it is irrelevant if it is an African or Indian one.


I thought Boing Boing was “a directory of wonderful things”.

Every newsplotation and infotainment site shows this story right now - so why does BoingBoing have to?

I come here for uplifting stories and levity. More wonder, less horror please.

Please stop politicizing this site.




As I already watched the video, sharing this tweet from the Foley family is probably the best thing I can do:


And ironically our military masterminds will look at it like, well 1 for them and what is it hundereds, thousands for us? It seems like we are making progress, keep it up.

In a way “war”, old fashioned here is our army war was better. Now to many people die needlessly that didn’t sign on for any of it.

Though it’s awful and terrifying, I don’t think it’s disrespectful to post a frame from the video that illustrates its newsworthiness, without showing the execution itself. It makes clear to the reader the circumstances of his death while, I hope, serving as a disambiguating warning to further curiosity.


You should read our wikipedia entry.


If you’re looking for levity, might I recommend a little site called I dunno if you’ve heard of it.

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Same goes for many other places. My point, though, was that if Iraq’s main export were asparagus instead of oil, there could well still be war going on there at this point, but the U.S. wouldn’t be involved.

Mod edit: removed insult

Second edit: That was an insult?! Maybe in your polite middle-class world. Anyway, it’s certainly no more of one than that person’s whole condescending reply was to me…

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“How many thousands of years of war and murder have to happen before we have had enough?”

All of them, probably.


For some reason this reminds me of the Belmont Club’s 3 Conjectures about the coming war on terror from back in 2003:

The terrible ifs are accumulating. I don’t think we will give them a second-chance to go back and see if they can find only 49 righteous men. Americans and Europeans are weary of spending blood and treasure in the Middle East, and those physics packages were going to need replacement anyways. Sad, but becoming more inevitable daily.

I don’t think there will ever be an end to violence, but it’s a strange fact that, despite all we see on our monitors, we’re living in the least violent time in human history. It’s possible that the very thing (mass media and the internet) that makes us believe that this can’t be true, is a huge part of why it is.

Of course, it’s of little comfort when confronted with such explicit brutality.