Unless some counterterrorism mission succeeds, it seems clear that we're just going to have to brace ourselves for more and more ISIS executions, spaced out for maximum effect:
British aid worker David Haines has been executed by ISIS militants, according to a video posted Saturday to a website associated with the group, making him the third Western captive to be killed by the Islamist extremist group in recent weeks....I understand why the families and friends feel helpless and want ransom paid. I think if I were in their shoes I'd feel the same way, even though I'd also understand that ransom tells ISIS that kidnapping (literally) pays, a message the U.S. and British governments don't want to send.
The new video pictures a masked ISIS militant placing his hand on another captive, whom he identified as Alan Henning, a British citizen....
The New York Times notes that Prime Minister David Cameron prevented Haines's ransom:
Earlier this month, Mr. Cameron ruled out paying a ransom for Mr. Haines. "It's a desperately difficult situation," he told Sky News. "We don't pay ransoms to terrorists when they kidnap our citizens."Nine days ago, the (non-Murdoch) Daily Mail noted that this stance infuriated Haines's friends:
Friends of the British hostage facing brutal murder by Islamic State fanatics last night said the British Government was 'letting an innocent man die' by refusing to pay a ransom for his release.Fox News has made a lot of noise about the fact that the U.S. government told the parents of James Foley that they shouldn't try to ransom their son:
While his wife told the Mail she is defiantly refusing to give up hope that David Haines will be rescued, close friends of the couple said his fate has been sealed by the UK's refusal to negotiate with terrorists....
And just this morning, the subject came up again on Fox:
Fox News Sunday's John Roberts asked White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough about the Obama administration's handling of the kidnapping of freelance American journalists Steven Sotloff and James Foley, alluding to comments by the Sotloff and Foley families that the White House told them "not to dare" ransom their son from ISIS of face prosecution.So is Murdoch pal David Cameron going to get grief from Fox for his anti-ransom stance?
"Why would the White House say something like that to them?" Roberts asked.
Well, this was Fox Nation late last month:
So no, I don't Fox is going to hold Cameron to the same standard.
It's quite easy to imagine Fox taking exactly the opposite position if the Obama administration paid ransom, or allowed it to be paid. The prisoner exchange for Bowe Bergdahl, of course, was a huge scandal on Fox. You can imagine the Murdoch press making heroes of parents who reject ransom deals ("Parents Say 'HELL NO!' to Terrorist Butchers' Cash-for-Hostage Demand"). The Obama stance with regard to ISIS would seem to be the sort of tough, unbending position Murdoch should admire. But it's Obama, so whatever he does, Fox is against it.