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ISIS Atrocities and Beheadings Continue from Syria to Iraq

AP Photo/ Jaber al-Helo

Aleteia - published on 09/08/14 - updated on 06/08/17

Jihadists detain 43 members of UN Peacekeeping forces.

Baghdad/Aleteia (aleteia.org/ar) – Jihadists continue to quickly publicize their crimes and acts of violence on YouTube in videos that show ISIS armed militiamen beheading their prisoners in Iraq and Syria. The terrorists in Syria murdered dozens of soldiers after they gained control of the al-Raqqa Air Base last week. In Iraq, ISIS gunmen killed a Kurdish leader in what was considered a warning to Kurdistan to end its cooperation with the United States in attempting to stop the Islamists.

ISIS depends upon the media and the Internet to disseminate videos and photographs of its operations launched against innocent civilians, such as the American journalists who were recently beheaded, James Foley and Steven Sotloff.

This media campaign has two objectives: To terrify the Middle East and to recruit Mujahideen from around the world. In the meantime, the moderate Islamic world’s responses have been confined to a few tepid condemnations and mostly silence.

ISIS gunmen recently killed dozens of Syrian soldiers when they were captured in battles that occurred at the Al-Tabqah Airbase. One of the videos showed dozens of men spread out on the ground in their underwear beside a pile of corpses.   
The validity of the videos shown on YouTube cannot be confirmed because the number of casualties claimed by ISIS conflicts with what the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) has stated. For instance, a comment on one of the videos mentions that the number of casualties was estimated at 250, while the SOHR–which has been documenting the violence of the ongoing war–observed that the number of casualties was more like 120.

A video of the al-Raqqah Airbase, the last stronghold of the Syrian Government in the region, showed the murder of dozens of soldiers and the extent to which ISIS has been able to project its power into northern Syria.

This video shows corpses lying in the desert, but there is no evidence of blood on the sand. This may indicate that the individuals were killed in another location before their corpses were moved. It is worth mentioning that these types of videos are very effective recruitment tools.

Meanwhile, the conflict between the Islamists and Syrian Forces continues in al-Qunaytrah, one of the most important cities in the Golan Heights, which is located on the Syrian-Israeli border. Because of this, Israel is closely monitoring all developments of the conflict.

The Jihadists abducted 43 Fijian members of a UN Peacekeeping Force at approximately the same time that 81 Filipino soldiers of another UN Peacekeeping Force were also kidnapped from various locations in the region. The International Security Council demanded their “immediate release.”

The violence of the Islamists in Syria continues unabated and grows on a daily basis in neighboring Iraq where last month ISIS gained control of a broad swath of the northern part of the country.

ISIS recently released another video entitled “A Bloody Message,” which showed a group of alleged Peshmerga men who had been taken by ISIS being beheaded. They were all wearing orange jumpsuits reminiscent of those worn by prisoners at Guantanamo and by the journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff. After beheading them, the video warns the Kurdistan leadership that other prisoners would be beheaded if they did not stop their alliance with the United States in its war against the Caliphate.

This article was originally published in Aleteia’s Arabic-language edition. 

Tags:
IraqIslamist MilitantsSyria
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