EDGARTOWN, Mass., Aug. 20 (UPI) -- U.S. President Barack Obama, speaking from Martha's Vineyard on Wednesday, said "the entire world is appalled by the brutal murder of Jim Foley by the terrorist group, ISIL."
On Tuesday, the extremist group, also known as the Islamic State, posted a graphic four-minute video to YouTube entitled "A Message to #America (from the #Islamic State)." The video showed the execution of Foley and warned that further military action in Iraq will determine whether another captive, American journalist Steven Joel Sotloff, will live or die.
The president was unwavering in his response that counter-terrorism operations against IS "must continue."
"The United States of America will continue to do what we must do to protect our people. We will be vigilant and we will be relentless. When people harm Americans, anywhere, we do what's necessary to see that justice is done. And we act against ISIL, standing alongside others.
"The people of Iraq, who with our support are taking the fight to ISIL, must continue coming together to expel these terrorists from their communities. The people of Syria, whose story Jim Foley told, do not deserve to live under the shadow of a tyrant or terrorists. They have our support in their pursuit of a future rooted in dignity."
Obama denounced IS tactics of targeting and massacring civilians in the name of Islam, and pointed out that "Their victims are overwhelmingly Muslim..."
"ISIL has no ideology of any value to human beings. Their ideology is bankrupt. They may claim out of expediency that they are at war with the United States or the West, but the fact is they terrorize their neighbors and offer them nothing but an endless slavery to their empty vision, and the collapse of any definition of civilized behavior."
The president underlined that "Friends and allies around the world... will continue to confront this hateful terrorism, and replace it with a sense of hope and civility."
Foley, the president observed, stood for such ideals: "a man who lived his work; who courageously told the stories of his fellow human beings; who was liked and loved by friends and family."
Obama reaffirmed as he closed his remarks that the U.S. "will do everything that we can to protect our people and the timeless values that we stand for."