People who were captured along with Foley say he received the harshest treatment because he was American. They say ISIS starved him and hung him upside down by his ankles. Cellmate:
You could see the scars on his ankles. He told me how they had chained his feet to a bar and then hung the bar so that he was upside down from the ceiling.
He was also waterboarded by the group.
The British militant believed to be responsible for the beheadings of Foley and Sotloff is reported to have been known to MI5 before he left the country. He was considered a low-risk target as he worked as a street collector raising funds for legitimate Arab charities. Doubt remains as to whether the British voice on the execution videos – belonging to the ISIS militant called ‘John’ by former captives, as part of a group of four British militants nicknamed ‘The Beatles’ – is that of the person who carried out the killings. It is also suspected that some parts of the videos, including Sotloff’s apparent message to America before he is killed, were faked, however ‘John’ is one of the most wanted among hundreds of UK fighters believed to be operating in Syria and Iraq. A source:
MI5 has identified this man and they have known exactly who he is for some time. He was even being looked at before he travelled abroad. At the time he was considered a very low-level risk because he was merely believed to be making street collections. Like so many jihadists before him, he then seems to have become radicalised almost overnight and disappeared to travel to the Middle East.
The man is thought to have traveled to the Middle East around a year ago, and became battlehardened within months.
Foley was among at least four Western hostages waterboarded by ISIS. A source says the militants have mastered the ‘enhanced interrogation’ technique used by the US on some terror suspects after Sept. 11, 2001:
They knew exactly how it was done
Philip Balboni, the president and chief executive of GlobalPost, where Foley worked, tells The Wall Street Journal ISIS demanded money from GlobalPost and Foley’s family in exchange for Foley’s release. He says the captors demanded a ransom of 100 million euros ($132.5 million), and states the messages started last fall:
The captors never messaged a lot. There was a very limited number with a very specific purpose. … They made demands.
He goes on to say that last week Foley’s family was notified by the captors and were told he would be killed:
The message was vitriolic and filled with rage against the United States. It was deadly serious. Obviously, we hoped and prayed that would not be the case. … Sadly, they showed no mercy.
He says Foley’s family responded to the email begging for mercy, but they never received a reply.