They tried, but did not succeed.
The United States tried to rescue James Foley and other U.S. citizens held captive by Islamic State (Isis) militants through a nighttime operation in Syria early this summer, administration officials said on Wednesday.
The defense officials, who spoke in the condition of anonymity because of the highly sensitive nature of the operation, said that U.S. army attempted to rescue Foley and others held by the militant group in what they described as a “complicated operation,” The New York Times reported.
According to the officials, the elite troops that were sent to carry out the dangerous mission were few of the best that the U.S. have. They were dropped through a helicopter into Syrian territory and battled their way through the spot where the captives were.
But when they swooped into the area, they were gone.
“We’re not sure why they were moved,” an official said. “By the time we got there, it was too late.” The official said it may have been “a matter of hours, perhaps a day or two” since the hostages had been there.
It is unclear yet if how many hostages the elite troops are set to rescue, The Guardian reported. Only Steven Sotloff, a journalist, is known to be in Isis’ custody as he appeared in the video showing the beheading of Foley.
With the disclosure of such classified information, several security experts and defense officials worried for Sotloff’s security.
“It’s pretty cavalier for the administration to condemn Snowden and turn around and endanger the remaining hostages. That’s not Opsec [operational security]. I’ve taught it, to the military and the state department. That’s not Opsec,” intelligence veteran Robert Caruso said.