Forensic analysts have raised the possibility that the video depicting the beheading of American journalist James Foley may have been staged in parts to extract maximum propaganda effect against the West, reports The Times.
After a segment on U.S. President Obama, the film cut to the journalist wearing an orange jumpsuit, kneeling in an undisclosed desert location. After reading a prepared speech, ‘Jihadi John’, the English terrorist makes a statement, before beginning to behead the journalist with a small combat knife.
This part of the film, which fades to black as the masked man goes in with the knife is the part that has raised questions amongst the international intelligence community. According to intelligence industry experts events in the last half second as the film fades out gives important clues as to the real events.
Although the analysis shows the knife is drawn across Foley’s neck six times that can be seen, there is no blood or noise that an expert would associate with a beheading executed in that style. It is possible that during his year of captivity Foley struck up a sort of friendship with his jailers, and they executed him by a less painful means off-camera before removing the head for the benefit of the camera.
Speaking exclusively to Breitbart London, Stephen Badsey, Professor of Conflict Studies at the University of Wolverhampton, said this deliberate misrepresentation of facts wouldn’t be unusual: “This is a standard technique. Propaganda does not come from nothing, it uses a real event and distorts it to fit a narrative. However self-censorship, not showing the execution itself is unusual, as these groups have never shied away from showing it before.
“As Western media so readily self-censors themselves when showing execution footage, there is no need unless they are trying to hide something.”
Although the terrorist in the Foley video makes it clear that if American air-strikes against ISIS don’t cease the murder of prisoners will continue, Professor Badsey argues that attempts at blackmail against the U.S. and U.K. have always backfired in the past.
“These videos continue to be released because of a continued belief, despite clear evidence to the contrary that Western democracies are sensitive to casualties. If anything the reverse is true, all you get is indignation”
“Take Fallujah in 2004 for example. Extremist fighters there kidnapped four U.S. contractors and hung the mutilated, charred bodies from a bridge as a warning to others. Far from shrinking from the situation, the incident was used as pretext for operation Vigilant Resolve”.
The operation, better known as the first battle of Fallujah led to over 600 civilian & militant deaths.
Whether he killed Foley, or was used as a convenient front-man to cause maximum unrest in the Western world, intelligence services now believe they have identified the killer known as ‘Jihadi John’, but are now biding their time to make maximum use of that intelligence.
It is believed he may have been identified by comparing his voice to the enormous catalogue of recorded telephone calls held by Britain’s security services, the legacy of years of signals intelligence work in Iraq, Afghanistan and the UK. The method uses an aircraft to ‘hoover-up’ all microwave radio traffic then beam it down to a handling centre where voices are matched to the database.
This technique which was revealed in a series of books authorised by the government to commemorate the centenary of the Security Service. Mass traffic analysis came about in response to terrorists regularly changing phone handsets and sim-cards to avoid detection.