Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby said on Tuesday that the decision by the Islamic State group to burn Jordanian pilot Lt. Muath al-Kaseasbeh alive was not “the acts of a winner.”
The 26-year-old Jordanian pilot’s F-16 crashed near Raqqa, Syria in December and he had been held prisoner ever since. The Sunni radical terror group gave the Jordanian government until Jan. 26 to agree to a prisoner swap for the man. It was unknown what the officer’s fate was until video of his gruesome death was uploaded to Islamic State social media pages.
“I can’t — there’s no way I could possibly figure out how to justify it in your brain because it’s so twisted,” Adm. Kirby said, The Washington Free Beacon reported. “These aren’t the acts of a winner. They’re not winning.”
President Obama condemned the killing as an act of “barbarity” on Tuesday, and the U.S. announced a plan to increase Islamic State-related aid to Jordan by $1 billion per year, up from $660 million. The plan still must be approved by Congress.