We all owe a debt to James Foley. He was killed in the effort to bring news of the wars in the Arab world to the rest of us, to make them more humanly comprehensible. Foley, who was murdered, on film, by the Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham, or ISIS, was acting on behalf of two principles: the right to know and the need to know. In this sense, Foley’s father did not exaggerate in calling him “a martyr for freedom.” The more I learn about the man and his work, the more my admiration grows. His journalism was clear-eyed, empathetic, and without the bravado that can creep into war reporting as an anesthetic against fear. By the accounts of his former fellow-prisoners (those who happen to be citizens of countries that pay ransom to terror groups), he was generous, thoughtful, good-humored, unbreakable in spirit. If you had to be shackled with someone in terrifying circumstances, for months on end, you would want it to be James Foley.