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Video of Beheading of American Peter Kassig Raising Questions

November 17, 2014  |  Posted by: JammedUp
Video of Beheading of American Peter Kassig Raising Questions

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Intelligence officials are baffled by the recent release of the beheading the American aid worker, Peter Kassig, who was beheaded by ISIS.

The video is a stark difference from previous ISIS execution films, and does not show the actual beheading itself and for the first time shows the execution of Syrian soldiers as well.

Whatever did change, it didn’t help Kassig. Yet there were stark differences between the tape announcing his murder and the four that came before and it is raising several questions.

It does not show Mr. Kassig being killed nor does it feature him, as was the case in the previous videos, making a last statement to the camera. Nor this time was a new captive identified for execution in the future.

The video, lasting 16 minutes,  attempts high production techniques as it goes through the history of the birth of ISIS and how it has turned into the force it is now, claiming parts of Iraq and Syria.

There is a narrator and provides English subtitles as well as a soundtrack.

The makers of the video have gone to great lengths to prolong and dramatise a section at its heart showing about 14 men in blue jumpsuits described as Syrian pilots and officers being led by ISIS fighters into what seems to be an olive grove.

Finally each fighter forces their prisoner to the ground and saws through their necks with serrated daggers.

As the Independent explains it, “with or without the slow-motion moments and the added sound effects – of steel on steel as each fighter selects his blade from an awaiting box full of them and of pounding hearts and fast breathing in the seconds before the acts of murder – the scene is unfathomable in its inhumanity.”

Although there have been attempts in the past at sophistication in the previous videos, the moment each of the doomed men were making their last statement before being executed,  were actually shot with different cameras from multiple angles.

However, the footage at the end of this tape showing what they claim is the head of Mr Kassig seems poorly shot in bad lighting and taken with only one camera.

The U.S. and British intelligence will now have to deem what this all means. Could Kassig have attempted to escape? Intelligence officials are asking, because the previous tapes were done so professionally, the ending in this one is much less scripted, could imply that the people who made the tape were suddenly sent on the run?

Just as the previous videos,  footage of the executions of the Syrian soldiers, show the  British-accented individual in a black hoody, named “Jihadi John”.

The US intelligence have indicated that they now have the man’s identity however he has not yet been caught. But there have been media reports that he may have been among ISIS combatants injured by a coalition air strike on one the group’s convoys nearly 10 days ago.

If this is the case, was this tape made before those strikes and what has happened to Jihadi John? And when was Peter Kassig actually executed?

A Syrian activist group have actually claimed that Peter Kassig’s execution may have been faked by Jihadi John and are alleging that the  US hostage was actually killed in an US-led airstrike.

Speaking over Skype from a hiding place near the Turkish border, the head of the anti-ISIS resistance group Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently claimed there are reports that Mr Kassig died on November 5, when coalition fighter planes and drones pounded Tel-Abyad in northern Syria.

The extraordinary allegation has not been independently verified.

The claims come among increased speculation over why Mr Kassig’s full body was not shown in the video. Unlike ISIS’ previous sickening filmed murders, he did not speak directly to camera before being killed and his body was not shown after the murder.

To date, ISIS has killed all of its American hostages except one- an unnamed, 26-year-old woman, which she was not shown on the tape like in the previous videos released.

Little information has been made available about the woman other than she is an aid worker from the west coast, was captured in Syria last year, and that ISIS is reportedly demanding $6million for her release.

However, the figure is low in comparison to previous demands, which have exceeded $100 million.

But it is unlikely to make a difference given the government’s long-standing refusal to negotiate with terrorists.

Previous executions showing victims including James Foley and David Haines, captives kneeled in the sand and spoke out in favor of the so-called Islamic State before being killed.

The speeches were given under obvious duress, have previously criticized the victim’s government – British of American – either on their broader foreign policy, refusals to negotiate with ISIS, specific military action such as air strikes.

Whatever may have changed, it did not help Mr Kassig. Yet the clear differences between the tape announcing his murder and the four that came before were striking and raised several questions. It does not show Mr Kassig being killed nor does it feature him, as was the case in the previous videos, making a last statement to the camera. Nor was this there a new captive identified for execution in the future.

The questions arising from the tape have many also indicating they believe Mr Kassig may have resisted his captors or tried to escape. This is the opinion of French terrorism expert Jean-Charles Brisard.

“Obviously there was something that happened during the filming”, Mr Brisard said, adding, “We know that the past executions were filmed from multiple perspectives, so perhaps something happened here that prevented them from doing so,” he told The New York Times.

Intelligence officials believe he may have refused to read a speech condemning the West prepared by his captors before they killed him.

Kassig, who was captured in Syria, may have known his execution was coming, launched a failed attempt to escape and refused to give his ISIS captors the satisfaction of reading their propaganda on camera, intelligence officials believe.

Whether he attempted to escape or was killed during bombing, only thing is certain, the video has raised more questions than answers.

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