ENGLAND: A day after President Barack Obama announced the United States doesn’t have a strategy to deal with ISIS, British Prime Minister David Cameron delivered a forceful speech bluntly describing the threat posed by the terror group ISIS and other extremist militants across the Middle East: “The root cause is quite clear: a poisonous ideology of Islamic extremism that is condemned by all … [and that will] force people to live in a Medieval state.”
Cameron raised his nation’s terrorism threat level to “severe,” citing recent intelligence reports. He estimated at least 500 people had traveled from Britain to the Middle East to fight with militants in Iraq and Syria. In the recent ISIS videos showing American beheadings, the black-clad executioner speaks with a British accent.
IRAQ: Masked members of ISIS beheaded another American journalist in a grisly video released Tuesday. White House officials confirmed the brutal slaying of Steven Sotloff, a freelance journalist captured in Syria in 2013. The video comes less than two weeks after ISIS publicly executed American journalist James Foley in a similar scene. The militants described the murders as retaliation for American airstrikes against ISIS positions in Iraq.
Sotloff’s fellow journalists mourned the loss of the intrepid, 31-year-old reporter described by his mother as “an honorable man” who “has always tried to help the weak.”
NORTH KOREA: North Korean officials allowed foreign media to interview three Americans held captive by the totalitarian regime on Monday. One of the prisoners, missionary Kenneth Bae, said eight hours a day of hard labor is affecting his already-fragile health. (He is serving a 15-year sentence.) The other two Americans, Jeffrey Fowle and Matthew Miller, expect to face trial within a month, but said they don’t know the exact charges. North Korean authorities detained Fowle, 56, in April after he reportedly left behind a Bible in a restaurant.
EBOLA: A third American aid worker has contracted Ebola in Liberia. The Christian mission group SIM USA reported one of its physicians was treating pregnant women in the capital city of Monrovia when he fell ill with symptoms of the deadly virus. SIM officials haven’t identified the doctor, but said he is in an isolation unit, and “is doing well and is in good spirits.”
More than 240 health workers have contracted Ebola in the West African outbreak that has killed more than 1,500 people. More than half of those healthcare workers have died, according to the World Health Organization. Samaritan’s Purse physician Kent Brantly and SIM USA worker Nancy Writebol have continued to recover well from the Ebola virus after near-death brushes with the disease.
NOTE: As a fellow Globe Trot reader, it’s my pleasure to bring this service to you while WORLD editor Mindy Belz is on sabbatical. I’ll do my best to fill her well-traveled shoes until she returns.