We're a hawk on the issues.

Conservative “Journalist” Calls James Foley a Coward for What ISIS Made Him Say Before They Killed Him

In a video released by terrorist group the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, a bald man they claim was missing journalist James Wright Foley knelt in the sand somewhere in the desert. A man dressed in black from head to toe stood next to him and then appears to behead the man. The video ends with a graphic image of the head laying on the back of the corpse and the swine dressed in black threatening another bald man dressed in orange, thought to be another missing journalist: Steven Sotloff.

Before Foley’s murder, he was forced to give a statement denouncing American intervention in Iraq and Syria, suggesting President Obama is to blame for his death. He also was able to address his family members. Foley was remarkably calm and stoic throughout the video. His mother told NBC News, “she was proud of her son.”

Freelance conservative “reporter” Chuck C. Johnson tweeted “Kind of hard to like James Foley when he blames U.S. government for his killing. Just saying.” Naturally, outrage ensued. Johnson proceeded to spend the rest of the day re-tweeting his critics and continuously repeating an implication that Foley was a coward or deserved disdain. “I have plenty of respect for the dead,” he tweeted, “I don’t have respect for people who condemn America. Period. Why do you?”

Johnson said that he “knows where [he’ll] go when [he] dies,” and figured that allowed him the luxury to perform a thought experiment where he has written some kind of patriot martyr fantasy for himself. “Real courage is not denying your God, your country, or your family when presented with death.”

Anyone with any kind of sense of journalistic ethics would not speculate about the situation that led up to the video. It is unknown the extent to which Foley was tortured, if Sotloff was threatened if Foley didn’t comply. Yet, Johnson most likely saw this video and rather than being shocked at the brutality of this enemy, looked down on the victim because he didn’t carry out his heroic “give me liberty or give me death” fantasy.

He later tweeted his hollow “condolences” to Foley’s family and “all those who are killed in the name of Islam.”

UPDATE: The National Security Council has, according to USA Today, “reached the judgment that this video is authentic.” It is also suspected that the masked man in the video is a British citizen, or he at least spent a lot of time there.

Photo via Twitter

About the author

Joshua M. Patton is a father, veteran, and writer living in Pittsburgh, PA. Along with news and current events, he writes about parenting, art, and personal stories. His serial fiction story "The Prophet Hustle" is available at JukePop.com and a forthcoming independent ebook about the cam-modeling industry "Dirty Little Windows" will be available later this summer.