The Islamic State's (IS) released video showing the beheading of American photojournalist James Foley has a straight-forward purpose from an analytical standpoint: intimidation. The brutality demonstrated in the video says, "Don't mess with us." Simple. Beyond the surface level, however, there is an equally alarming element to this video: recruitment to jihad.
The fighter in the Islamic State's (IS) August 19, 2014 beheading video of James Foley has prompted intense reactions among Westerners. As the unidentified fighter's nationality was confirmed to be British, Prime Minster David Cameron cancelled his vacation to assist in what has quickly become an international investigation to identify this man. But while the execution marks a newly elevated step by IS to challenge the West, the fighter's British nationality should be of no shock.
Islamic State (IS)-supporters took to Twitter to respond to IS's release of a video showing the beheading of U.S. journalist James Foley on August 19, 2014—collectively using the hashtags "#A_Message_to_America," based off the title of the IS video, and "#NewMessageFromISIStoUS," a modification of the recent hashtag formed in response to U.S. airstrikes, #AMessagefromISIStoUS."
The Islamic State (IS) released a video showing its beheading of an American citizen, James Wright Foley, and its threatening to execute another, Steven Joel Sotloff, if U.S.-authorized military operations against the group continue.
UPDATE: Al-Hayat Media Center and remaining Islamic State accounts on Diaspora accounts have been taken down.
Al-Hayat Media Center, the Islamic State's (IS) English media arm, released a video on August 19 showing the beheading of U.S. photojournalist James Foley, who was kidnapped in Syria in November 2012. The video, titled "A Message to America," was disseminated and promoted on Diaspora, a social media website, and also threatened to kill Steven Sotloff, another U.S. journalist held prisoner by IS since August 2013.