Report: White House Delayed Action to Save American Journalists Held By ISIS For Five Weeks

Katie Pavlich
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Posted: Nov 03, 2014 3:15 PM
Report: White House Delayed Action to Save American Journalists Held By ISIS For Five Weeks

According to new reporting from Fox News' Catherine Herridge, the White House sat on intelligence detailing the location of ISIS hostages James Foley and Steven Sotloff for five weeks before attempting a rescue. When a rescue operation was eventually launched, the location of the hostages had changed and shortly afterward, Foley and Sotloff were beheaded on video. 

"The criticism is that the White House had a high [intelligence] threshold than those who would carry out the mission."

More on the failed rescue attempt from the WSJ:

The Wall Street Journal reports that the July 3 raid on an oil storage facility, a mission for which Delta Force commandos drilled for weeks, took place too late, as officials believe the hostages were moved by the militants just days before.

"(The site) was a dry hole," a senior U.S. military official told the paper.

The report corroborates a claim made earlier this week by a Pentagon official to Fox News, who said there was a delay regarding the question of whether to act to save Foley from ISIS militants. The Sunday Times of London first reported that the delay was 30 days. The former Pentagon official described a White House that was hesitant and continually asking for "the intelligence to build up more."  

In an interview with CNN's Anderson Cooper in September James Foley's mother, Diane Foley, said she felt her family had been left behind by their government and that more could have been done to save her son.

"As an American, I was embarrassed and appalled," Diane Foley told Cooper in an interview that will air Thursday evening. "I think our efforts to get Jim freed were an annoyance, and it didn't seem to be in [U.S.] strategic interest, if you will."

She added: "Jim would've been saddened. Jim believed to the end that his country would come to their aid."

The indecision of the Obama White House once again proves to have deadly results.