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ISIL released a video showing the death of British aid worker Alan Henning after promising retribution to President Obama for airstrikes against the terrorist organization.
This article will not show the video released with the terrorist’s announcement out of respect for Henning and to not further any agenda by the organization.
As global pressure to eliminate the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) mounts, the terrorist organization beheads British aid worker and taxi driver Alan Henning. Henning is the fourth civilian murdered.
According to The Telegraph, Leicester aid worker Majid Freeman blamed the British government for joining the international fight to stop ISIL from expanding territory, as well as capturing and killing innocent civilians (local and global alike).
“When I say ALL those accountable for #AlanHenning’s death. It includes the British govt, the 500+ MP’s who voted for airstrikes and ISIS.”
While an understandable if reactionary response, the implication seemingly absolves ISIL from their actions when the global community attempts to help those being directly attacked by the organization.
Al Jazeera reports that the video released late Friday night shows the Eccles man’s murder by a masked man’s hand. Before his death, the British man was recorded saying “because of our parliament’s decision to attack the Islamic State, I, as a member of the British public, will now pay the price for that decision.”
While information has not been confirmed just yet, the organization’s previous attacks on American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff and Scottish aid worker David Haines show the terrorists capacity for similar killings. Both the British and American governments are evaluating the tapes.
The masked man in the video claimed, “Obama, you have started your aerial bombardment of Shams [Syria], which keeps on striking our people, so it is only right that we continue to strike the neck of your people.” However, a threat against the world’s policing attempt only strengthens the resolve to end ISIL.
Henning’s death recalls the previous killings; the released tape and grief of parents and loved ones as they react to the news. It’s easy to imagine the pain, and the possible joy for the murderers, as the world watches the reactions in real time.
Even more tragic is the fact Leicester held a vigil for the man before news leaked in Friday, where Muslims and non-Muslims walked together in support of his life. Organizer Rhaz Khan chose Friday, Oct. 3, “is the day of Arafat – the holiest day in the Islamic calendar” and “I am appealing to them on this most special day to let Mr Henning go.” So the date of death punishes on many levels, including those working for release of prisoners and an end to conflict.
But who was Alan Henning?
Huffington Post says the man was a British aid worker, who was kidnapped in December, looking to help those in need. Henning’s wife Barbara reiterated why he went to Syria last yearin a Sept. 23 message. “He went to Syria to help his Muslim friends deliver much needed aid.” She paints a kind picture of a beloved man delivering aid in an ambulance.
International response by leaders included Shaykh Haitham Al Haddad, a judge on the Shariah Council in London. Speaking to ISIL, the man reminded that “whatever your grievance with American or British foreign policy, executing this man is not the answer.”
And wondering how the imprisonment still existed on Sept. 22. “We are at a loss why those leading Islamic State cannot open their hearts and mind to the facts surrounding Alan’s imprisonment and why they continue to threaten his life.” Barbara Henning suggests the Sharia court found the man innocent of being a spy. So the death is a brutal reminder of the lawless injustice.
Al Jazeera’s Bernard Smith also reports Suruc, a town based in southern Turkey, is close enough to a key Kurdish town in Syria to hear the intense shelling, gunfire, and explosions as ISIL attempts to take the Syria town.
Sources told Al Jazeera that “ISIL had seized control of hills around Kobane, and backed by military vehicles and tanks, launched an attack on a south-eastern suburb early in the morning.”
Turkey recently joined the global effort to attack ISIL and try to eliminate the organization for the sake of the international community. And Ahmet Davutoglu, Turkey’s prime minister, promised to do whatever possible to keep the fall of Kobane from happening, to make the 60 mortar rounds hitting the town matter. And due to American pressure, Turkey will be closing the border, leaving many people stranded on either side.
While Kurds along the Turkey border blame the government for not doing enough, the capital is looking for solutions in a very war-torn area where Syria’s foreign ministry claims any Turkish intervention would be considered an act of “aggression.”
In fact, the same department claimed the “international community and, in particular, the Security Council, should act to put an end to the adventures of the Turkish leadership” because it “represents a threat to world security and peace.” In the meantime, Syrians are crossing the Turkish border, protecting their families while the men go back to fight ISIL as the Peoples Protection Units (YPG).
This is no longer a posturing position between two nations.
Looking at the overall foreign diplomacy, it seems as if Syria does not want international aid, but global citizenship requires the protection of the already beleaguered area. For every citizen killed there must be a ripple felt throughout. U.S. citizen and former solider Peter Kassing is now in the crosshairs of an international fight, marking a fifth possible target.
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