Fox News has chosen to embed on its website the video of Islamic State burning a hostage to death, a move which makes them the only US media organisation to broadcast the video in full.The video hasn't been televised on Fox News, but Shepard Smith did narrate it in detail.
The extremely graphic 22-minute video shows Muadh al-Kasasbeh, a Jordanian pilot, being set on fire and burned to death in a cage. Fox News did not post the videos of the killings of previous Isis hostages....
Here's Fox's explanation for this decision:
Fox News executive vice president John Moody issued this statement today explaining the decision:But Islamic State operatives also videotaped the executions of James Foley, Steven Sotloff, Alan Henning, Peter Kassig, and Haruna Yukawa. Why didn't Fox solemnly declare the need to share those videos?
After careful consideration, we decided that giving readers of FoxNews.com the option to see for themselves the barbarity of ISIS outweighed legitimate concerns about the graphic nature of the video. Online users can choose to view or not view this disturbing content.
I have to assume it's because those victims were all white, with the exception of Yukawa, who was Japanese.
Fox posted this video, obviously, looking for increased traffic on its various media platforms, and hoping to increase hatred toward various enemies (not just the Islamic State but the Obama administration, which is, to all Fox viewers, completely to blame for IS's existence). Fox can handle the criticism that it's doing IS a favor by disseminating one of its nastiest (and, probably, most effective) propaganda videos. However, it probably couldn't have handled outrage from the family of any of the white execution victims, who would have been horrified to see a family member's brutal death exploited by Fox, and probably would have expressed anger in public. The American people would have agreed that what Fox did was outrageous -- and I imagine most Americans would have been able to relate to outrage from a Japanese victim's family as well.
But Fox presumes that Heartland America sees Muadh al-Kasasbeh as just some guy from the Middle East. He's a Jordanian -- who cares what his family thinks? He may be a victim of appalling violence perpetrated by America's most hated enemy, but the people at Fox know that its audience won't care if the channel is attacked by Jordanians after Fox exploits his death for clicks and ratings.
If I'm wrong about this -- if this killing was just the last straw, and Fox top brass now thinks it's appropriate to post IS execution videos -- then there's nothing preventing Fox from retroactively posting all the execution videos, right now.
But that won't happen, because some dead people get more respect than others at Fox.