Appearing on CNN Monday, a spokesman for the family of murdered US journalist Steven Sotloff slammed the Obama administration, declaring that both Sotloff and his compatriot journalist James Foley were used, and still are being used, by the White House to further its agenda in Syria.
“We know that the intelligence community and the White House are enmeshed in a larger game of bureaucratic infighting and Jim [Foley] and Steve are pawns in that game and that’s not fair.” Barak Barfi told Anderson Cooper.
Referring to the ill conceived plan to rescue the hostages, Barfi said “…the Pentagon, the intelligence community were pushing back against the White House and saying it was their fault, that they didn’t provide the surveillance necessary to find the hostages”.
The spokesman also claimed that Syrian rebels supported by the US government were responsible for the journalists falling into ISIS hands in the first instance.
“We believe that these so-called moderate rebels that people want our administration to support, one of them sold him probably for something between $25,000 and $50,000 to ISIS and that was the reason he was captured,” Barfi urged, claiming that sources “on the ground” have corroborated this information.
Barfi also accused Obama of making “a number of inaccurate statements” regarding the situation.
“They’ve said that the families have been consistently and regularly informed. That is not true,” he claimed. “I speak now only from the Sotloff family. I can’t speak for the other families. They said that these hostages were moved frequently. We know that for most of the beginning of part of this year they were stationary.”
Barfi scolded Obama for allowing details of Sotloff’s captivity, including torture of the journalist by extremists, to leak to the media.
“People now are talking about the torture that some of these hostages suffered. People talked about specifically some of the tortures that Jim suffered, and that’s just not fair to his family. They need time to heal.” Barfi stated.
The advocate suggested he knew of more damning information regarding the Obama administration’s handling of the situation and threatened to reveal it, should leaks to the press continue.
“If there continues to be leaks, the Sotloff family will have to speak out to set the record straight,” he said.
“The relationship between the administration and the Sotloff family was very strained” Barfi revealed. And “the administration could have done more, they could have helped us, they could have seen them through…I just do not believe they [the Sotloff family] were afforded the opportunities of respect they should have been afforded by this administration.” he charged.
Steve Watson is a London based writer and editor for Alex Jones’ Infowars.com, and Prisonplanet.com. He has a Masters Degree in International Relations from the School of Politics at The University of Nottingham, and a Bachelor Of Arts Degree in Literature and Creative Writing from Nottingham Trent University.