An online video began spreading on Tuesday of Jordanian pilot 1st Lt. Muadh al-Kasasbeh being burned alive. The video release follows a breakdown in negotiations between Jordan and Kasasbeh’s ISIS captors.
It is unknown when Kasasbeh was killed by ISIS. Rumors of his death had circulated among online supporters of the terror group as early as the first full week of January. He had been in the group’s custody since his F-16 crashed in ISIS-held territory in late December.
The video’s authenticity has also yet to be confirmed by credible ISIS-related channels.
Here's a screen grabs from the worst, most sickening Islamic State video yet. Jordanian pilot burned alive. pic.twitter.com/X4GrWURbWv
— Shiraz Maher (@ShirazMaher) February 3, 2015
Kasasbeh is the third high-profile foreign hostage to die in ISIS captivity in the past two weeks. The jihadi group previously issued evidence of the deaths of two Japanese hostages whom it had been using as pawns to elicit ransoms from the Japanese government.
Last week, the Jordanian government offered to release female Iraqi al-Qaida suicide bomber Sajida al-Rishawi, who has been imprisoned in Jordan since 2005. But it demanded evidence of Kasasbeh’s safety before releasing Rishawi — evidence which had been slow in coming. (RELATED: Negotiating With ISIS, US Ally Jordan At A Stalemate)
Jordan had also threatened to kill all its convicted ISIS-affiliated prisoners if Kasasbeh proved to be dead. Its government has not yet issued a response to the news.
Minutes after the video surfaced, some terror sympathizers were already celebrating, with one Twitter user sending an Arabic phrase that means “there is no might nor power except in God.”
Foreign policy experts and terrorism analysts, meanwhile, urged their followers not to share images of the video, saying it would contribute into the terrorist group’s psychological warfare of intimidation and barbarism. Instead, an image of Kasasbeh in happier days quickly spread on social media.
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