Monday, March, 04, 2024

American Mother with Diane Foley & Colum McCann, New America ONLINE


[ONLINE] – American Mother

In late 2021, Diane Foley sat at a table across from her son’s killer, Alexanda Kotey, a member of the ISIS group known as “The Beatles” who pleaded guilty to the kidnapping, torture, and murder of her son seven years before. Kotey was about to go serve life imprisonment and this was Diane’s chance to talk to the man who had been involved with brutally taking her son’s last breath. What would she say to his killer? What would he reveal to her? Might she even be able to summon forgiveness for him? So begins American Mother in which Diane Foley along with National Book Award-winning author Colum McCann tell her story, as the mother of American journalist Jim Foley – in search of answers, beyond justice, found through dogged, empathetic, spiritual enquiry.

Join New America’s Future Security Program as they welcome Diane Foley and Colum McCann, to discuss their new book American Mother. Diane M. Foley co-founded the James W. Foley Legacy Foundation in the weeks after her son was beheaded by members of ISIS in the Syrian Desert in 2014. Inspired by the life, work, and moral courage of her son, she has worked with Congress and every presidential administration since, catalyzing action, research, and policy to win freedom for all US Nationals wrongfully detained or held hostage abroad Colum McCann has written seven novels and three collections of short stories that have been published in over forty languages. He has received some of the world’s most prestigious literary awards and honors, including the National Book Award for his novel Let the Great World Spin in 2013. The conversation will be moderated by New America Vice President and Arizona State University Professor of Practice Peter Bergen.

Join the conversation online using #AmericanMother and following @NewAmericaISP.


Diane Foley

Co-Author, American Mother

Founder, James W. Foley Legacy Foundation

Colum McCann

Co-Author, American Mother


Peter Bergen

Vice President, New America

Co-Director, Future Security

Professor of Practice, Arizona State University