- The Washington Times - Thursday, August 21, 2014

The U.S. Justice Department is pursuing a criminal investigation into the beheading death of American photojournalist James Foley, Attorney General Eric H. Holder announced Thursday.

Mr. Foley, who was kidnapped in Syria nearly two years ago, was beheaded by the terrorist army known as the Islamic State. The brutal execution was shown in a video released Tuesday.


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The face of the killer, who spoke with a British accent, was concealed behind a black mask. His identity remains unknown.

“Those who would perpetrate such acts need to understand something. “This Justice Department, this Department of Defense, this nation — we have long memories and our reach is very wide,” Mr. Holder said at a press conference in Washington.

“We will not forget what happened and people will be held accountable, one way or the other,” he said.

The Islamic State threatened to kill more Americans unless President Obama stopped U.S. airstrikes on the militants. The terror group has seized control of a huge swath of territory in Iraq and Syria, until the U.S. airstrikes that began Aug. 8 stopped its advances across Iraq.

Mr. Obama vowed to protect American lives and defeat the Islamic State, which he described in a speech Wednesday as a “cancer” that must be “extracted.” The airstrikes have continued.