The announcement of Peter Kassig’s death, in what would be the fifth such killing of a Western/captive by the group, was part of a 15-minute video in which Islamic State shows the beheadings of at least 16 men said to be captured pilots and officers loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Kassig’s beheading is not seen in the video, but it shows the British masked militant dubbed “Jihadi John” standing with a decapitated head covered in blood lying at his feet. “This is Peter Edward Kassig, a U.S. citizen,” he says. Speculation abounds as to why Peter Kassig was not typically beheaded on video, the most popular is that Kassig may have resisted or fought back in whatever limited manner available.
Also, it may be that Jihadi John was not able to do the terrible deed on his own. According to reports, Jihadi John is believed to have been wounded in an air attack during a meeting of IS leaders in an Iraqi town close to the Syrian border earlier this month.
Although grisly, this IS video is remarkable in that it makes great emphasis on openly depicting IS members of various ethnicities and nationalities chidingly unmasked, as if to establish affinity and invitation across the globe.
As a result of numerous unmasked IS Members appearing in this video, Britain announced positive identity of at least three citizens, and France named upwards of four citizens (announcements verified by numerous reports and updates from official sources), and continues to to update identities as soon as they can be made.
Other countries are also actively reviewing the video, but have not yet made any findings public.
The format of this video was also different from previous ones, not only because it showed multiple beheadings by unmasked executioners, but also because these were shown in graphic detail following what appears to be slick recruitment propaganda.
The beheadings of the Syrian personnel were filmed in death squad style, with militants standing behind kneeling men in dark blue overalls. In slow motion shots, each of the militants is shown drawing a knife from a box on the side of the road as they personally escort their ‘assigned’ captive victims to their pre-arranged place of execution.
GRAPHIC VIDEO — NSFW:
“To Obama, the dog of Rome, today we are slaughtering the soldiers of Bashar and tomorrow we will be slaughtering your soldiers,” Jihadi John says. “And with Allah’s permission … the Islamic State will soon … begin to slaughter your people in your streets.”
The purported location was also disclosed, the northern Syrian town of Dabeq near the Turkish border. Jihadi John says they had buried Kassig there, “Here we are burying the first American crusader in Dabeq. Eagerly waiting for the remainder of your armies to arrive.”
In a statement, Kassig’s parents Ed and Paula Kassig said they were aware of news reports “about our treasured son” and were awaiting confirmation from the government as to their authenticity.
UPDATE: The White House confirmed the death of Peter Kassig after reviewing the video.
See Also > JIHADI JOHN TENTATIVELY IDENTIFIED