An American journalist known for being kidnapped and beheaded in Pakistan
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Before there was Nick Berg, there was Daniel Pearl. Daniel Pearl went to Pakistan to investigate a terrorist known as the shoe bomber. Instead he was kidnapped. The Terrorists sent ransom messages over e-mail, then produced an internet tough guy beheading video which depicted Pearl being interrogated... and then Pearl without his head. But the men forgot to use a proxy when sending the emails, so they got partyvanned. Pearl's execution video was the first online terrorist execution video.
Rise to fame
Daniel Pearl went to Pakistan to investigate about Richard Reid, a terrorist who tried and failed to blow up an airplane with his shoes. Pearl was told that he could meet with some guys who had information about the "Shoe Bomber".
Instead of information, the men had rope and duct tape. They created a very clever e-mail account, "email@example.com" - then sent ransom e-mails to Pearl's newspaper depicting him in handcuffs, with a gun pointed to his head.
The kidnappers then released a video of Pearl being interrogated as the kidnappers posted visual commentaries, making it the terrorist equivalent of a livejournal blog. Then the video depicted Pearl's head without his body, and a list of demands against the US government scrolled upwards.
When the video went online, it made the internet hate the terrorists who did it. But the kidnappers forgot to proxy. Remember the firstname.lastname@example.org e-mails? The governments got the IP addresses, and the men responsible were partyvanned.
Pearl is dead. His wife and child are alive and well. The guys who killed Pearl are in prison.
An award for international investigative journalism is named in his honor.