Catherine Herridge EXCLUSIVE:
“As early as May, the Obama administration had strong and specific information about the location of American James Foley and other hostages held in Syria, a source close to the discussions told Fox News, but the rescue mission was not approved until early July.
The gap raises new and compelling questions about whether the operation to save the American and British hostages was unnecessarily delayed for at least five weeks because the administration wanted the intelligence to develop further.
“We had a lot of really good information on where they were being held, very specific information,” said the source, who agreed to discuss the details on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter. The source added that the Islamic State captors felt so secure in their stronghold of Raqqa, Syria, that the hostages were moved between only a handful of locations. By late spring, the American and British hostages had been held for at least three weeks in one facility.
Other sources backed up the account provided to Fox News. The timeline seems to conflict with administration claims that the White House signed off on the operation as soon as the intelligence allowed.
“The U.S. government had what we believed was sufficient intelligence, and when the opportunity presented itself, the president authorized the Department of Defense to move aggressively to recover our citizens,” Lisa Monaco, the White House counterterrorism adviser, said in August, after journalist and hostage James Foley was executed and the video was posted by ISIS. “Unfortunately, that mission was ultimately not successful because the hostages were not present.”
A similar statement, which did not dispute the strength of the hostage location information, was provided to Fox News on Monday by National Security Council spokeswoman Bernadette Meehan. “U.S. forces conducted this operation as soon as the President and his national security team were confident the mission could be carried out successfully and consistent with our policies for undertaking such operations,” the statement said.
“The intelligence is never bullet-proof,” a former military official said. “When they [the rescue team] finally did go, the general view was that the intelligence was drying up. … These guys were ready to go, on a lower threshold [for the intelligence than the White House] … We want the American people to know we are there for them, and ready to go 24 hours a day.”
In an interview with Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren broadcast in mid-September, after ISIS posted the execution video of Foley, his parents said they also believed information was available about the hostage’s location long before the July rescue attempt.
“It was too late. I really feel that — well, we were hinted that they knew where they were for, jeez, at different times they knew just where they were. But it was a dangerous mission,” Diane Foley explained.
“Like all Americans, we felt our government would succeed at whatever it decided to do, and were certainly dismayed that the effort was unsuccessful,” John Foley added.
Details have also emerged about the shadowy network of prisons used to hold the hostages who were held in close proximity to one another. Fox News has learned that after leaving a prison in the basement of the Aleppo Children’s hospital in the fall of 2013, the hostages were moved to a nearby industrial area — before ISIS moved them again in early 2014 to their stronghold of Raqqa where over the next five months they were held in a handful of locations.
Fox News is withholding some details of their captivity as well as the names of hostages — who have not been publicly identified by ISIS — at the request of the families and the U.S. government.”
via Playing with a Ouija board isn’t funny. It’s stupid and dangerous.”………Catholics are sternly warned again the activity. That’s because we know the Devil is real and that it’s folly to ever consider dabbling in the occult. It’s not “fun”; it’s playing with hellfire. Again, because we have just celebrated Halloween, there has been a spate of articles on the diabolic. I read an article about the film of The Exorcist in Alateia magazine for October 31st. One particular detail stood out: that in the famous case in 1949 of demonic possession, which became the basis for William Peter Blatty’s novel of 1971 (then followed by the film of his book), the family of the youth involved, a 13-year-old boy from Maryland, “thought he might have been plagued by the spirit of a recently deceased aunt, who had introduced the boy to the Ouija board.”
The youth was exorcised in St Louis by Jesuit priests. William Bowdern SJ, the lead exorcist, was in no doubt that this was a case of genuine possession. The whole process lasted a month, ending successfully on Easter Monday. Significantly, Bowdern fasted during that month, in acknowledgement of Jesus’ own warning that fasting is as essential as prayer when engaging in serious spiritual combat.
The mention of Ouija boards reminded me of my own youthful folly in this area.
As a student at Cambridge in the 1960s I took part in a séance organised in Magdalene College by some undergraduate friends. I was motivated by sheer curiosity to see what would happen and it was certainly bizarre and scary to watch the upturned glass move fast under its own volition round the table. I can’t remember the questions we asked the “spirit” we seemed to have conjured up and, feeling uneasy about the whole incident, I never returned for follow-up séances. I now see it was a stupid and dangerous activity to have engaged in.
I suspect that modern man rejects Satan because of films like The Exorcist; sensational Hollywood horror treatment turns the story into a creepy thrill that is dismissed as sheer fantasy. But as CS Lewis reminds us in The Screwtape Letters, the Devil doesn’t generally bother with spectacular phenomena such as possession or conjuring up spirits; why bother, when he can trap us with greater success through our own human weaknesses, our vanity, our egotism, our imprudent curiosity?
The genesis of The Screwtape Letters is described by Walter Hooper in his recent CTS booklet “CS Lewis: Apostle to the Sceptics”. Lewis wrote to his brother on 20th July 1940, mentioning that he had been listening to Hitler over the radio and finding that “Statements which I know to be untrue all but convince me…if only the man says them unflinchingly”. Still thinking of Hitler’s persuasiveness, he told his brother the next morning “Before the service was over…I was struck by an idea for a book which I think might be both useful and entertaining. It would…consist of letters from an elderly retired devil to a young devil who has just started work on his first “patient.” The idea would be to give all the psychology of temptation from the other point of view.”
August Queen of the Heavens, heavenly sovereign of the Angels, Thou who from the beginning received from God the power and the mission to crush the head of Satan, we humbly beseech Thee to send Your holy Legions, so that under Thy command and through Thy power, they may pursue the demons and combat them everywhere, suppress their boldness, and drive them back into the abyss. Who is like God? O good and tender Mother, Thou will always be our love and hope! O Divine Mother, send Thy Holy Angels to defend me and to drive far away from me the cruel enemy. Holy Angels and Archangels, defend us, guard us. Amen
Saint Michael the Archangel
Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our protection against the malice and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him we humbly pray; and do thou, O Prince of the Heavenly host, by the power of God, thrust into hell Satan and all evil spirits who wander through the world for the ruin of souls. Amen.
Hand in hand on pilgrimage,
Joy and tears are caught up
And carried aloft,
On the wings of angels,
And placed in the brazier
Before the throne of God,
With our hearts prostrate,
And spirits pleading,
For that final awakening
Of which the Saints speak,
And the Church,
In union with Her Bridegroom,
Proclaims through the long Ages,
Leading all to Final Rest.
Come, Christ, Savior,
Come, Happiness of All Souls and Saints,
Come, my Jesus, O Journeys’ End.
copyright 2014 Joann Nelander
Maybe it wasn’t God, afterall?