President Barack Obama did not watch the video showing Islamic State militants behead an American journalist, as far as White House aides know, the New York Times reported late Thursday.
According to the Times, the president’s advisers maintain that they do not think it would be a good idea for Obama to watch the graphic footage.
President Barack Obama arrives to speak in Edgartown, Mass., Wednesday, Aug. 20, 2014, about the killing of American journalist James Foley by militants with the Islamic State extremist group. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
The video, published online earlier this week, shows photojournalist James Foley being beheaded by the Islamic State. A clip at the end of the video then shows another American journalist, Steven J. Sotloff, on his knees.
“The life of this American citizen, Obama, depends on your next decision,” the masked militant warned Obama.
On Wednesday, Obama said that Foley’s execution was an “act of violence that shocks the conscience of the entire world” and vowed to hold those who carried the execution out responsible.
“When people harm Americans anywhere, we do what’s necessary to see that justice is done,” Obama said, speaking from Martha’s Vineyard.
Moments after delivering the statement, however, the president headed to the golf course, continuing his vacation. According to the Times report, White House aides said the game did not reflect the grief Obama felt for Foley's family.
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