White House calls James Foley's execution a 'terrorist attack' against the US

US Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes briefs the press at Martha's Vineyard, Mass., on Aug. 22, 2014.

The execution of American journalist James Foley represents a "terrorist attack" against the United States, the White House said Friday, three days after Islamic extremists released a video of his beheading.

"When you see somebody killed in such a horrific way, that represents a terrorist attack — that represents a terrorist attack against our country and against an American citizen," Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes said.