I still haven't processed the evil that ISIL has unleashed, culminating in their public execution of American journalist James Foley. It's inhuman, barbaric, and downright evil. Coming on the heels of everything else these past two weeks it's also incomprehensible. There's only so much evil I can handle before just shutting down.
It is, then, a breath of fresh air to hear Foley's colleagues pay tribute to his humanity, his goodness and his commitment to tell the stories of people in the countries he covered. I do believe there will be justice for those who took his life, and part of that justice will be that their evil act won't erase the good he did.
AFP journalists took some time to remember him and his good deeds. For me, it's far more productive to remember the good in someone than the evil that took his life. So here's a few snippets. You should read the whole thing.
"He tried to show childhoods cut short by indiscriminate bombings, elderly survivors pulled from wreckage," Belaid said.
"His images often spoke for themselves, but his accompanying mails always mentioned the names of those he had interviewed and even of those he filmed after they had died under the bombardment.
"For him, no victim was anonymous, he made it a point of principle to find out their names, to gather information about their lives."
AFP chief video editor Henry Bouvier said Foley captured "moments when humanity gained the upper hand over war, such as a marriage in Aleppo in the dead of night between a rebel and a nurse as bombs fell in the distance."
"Images of a dumbfounding violence of a civilian population under a deluge of tank shells," he said, recalling Foley's bravery and resourcefulness in shooting and transmitting footage from the most difficult of places.
"With a discreet little camera, helmet and bullet-proof vest, James Foley was able to slip into the frontlines, often meeting fleeing refugees coming the other way, sometimes taking shelter with them when the shelling was intense.