Islamic State: British Analyst Thinks James Foley Beheading Was Off-Cam; Video Explains How Camera Trick Is Done

By @ibtimesau on
James Foley
U.S. journalists James Foley (2nd R) and Clare Gillis (R) arrive, after being released by the Libyan government, at Rixos hotel in Tripoli, in this photograph taken May 18, 2011. Islamic State militants have posted a video that purported to show the beheading of American journalist Foley in revenge for U.S. air strikes in Iraq, prompting widespread revulsion that could push Western powers into further action against the group. Foley, 40, was kidnapped on November 22, 2012, in northern Syria, according to GlobalPost. The video was posted after the U.S. resumed air strikes in Iraq in August 2014 for the first time since the end of the U.S. occupation in 2011. He had earlier been kidnapped and released in Libya. Picture taken May 18, 2011. REUTERS/Louafi Larbi (LIBYA - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST CRIME LAW)

Supporting a theory now being suggested by British media that the beheading of American photojournalist James Foley was partly stage managed, a British analyst said on Monday that the decapitation likely happened off camera.

"I think it has been staged. My feeling is that the execution may have happened after the camera was stopped," the New York Post quoted an unnamed British forensic science company.

The firm also raised the possibility that the decapitation may not have been done by Jihadist John, identified by British military intelligence as Abdel-Majed Abdel Bary, a former rapper.


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Its opinion backs the theory that the viral video tapped camera tricks and post-production techniques to make it appear that Foley was decapitated by John using a six-inch knife which he ran across the hostage's neck several times.

"After enhancement, the knife can be seen to be drawn across the upper neck at least six times, with no blood evidence to the point the picture fades to black," the company added.

However, it acknowledged the common belief that Foley was really beheaded by members of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

Here's an interesting YouTube explanation on how the camera tricks works.


Meanwhile, National Post reported that a former hostage who was released memorised Foley's letter to his family, which were confiscated by his captors, and when he was freed dictated the letter to Foley's mother.

Foley and the released inmate shared a cell with 15 other hostages. To while away time, they had long conversations on various topics such as movies, trivia and sport as well as played board games like chess and checkers, using scraps found in their cell.

He recounted that they were fed every day and were sometimes given tea of coffee. "I have regained most of my weight lost last year ... I have had weak and strong days. We are so grateful when anyone is freed; but of course, yearn for our own freedom. We try to encourage each other and share strength," Foley wrote.

Foley concluded the letter with a message to his grandmum, which reads: "Grammy, please take your medicine, take walks and keep dancing. Stay strong because I am going to need your help to reclaim my 'life.'"


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