An unnamed Egyptian man was purportedly forced to dig his own grave and was executed in Egypt's Sinai region because ISIS militants believed he was working for Israeli intelligence.
A heavily edited ISIS propaganda video of the alleged incident surfaced Wednesday on YouTube.
At the beginning of the video, the man is seen chatting in Arabic on a cellphone after he's captured by ISIS militants. Then dressed in an orange jumpsuit, he can be seen digging his own grave and mumbling to himself before being shot execution style in the back of the head with a pistol by a masked ISIS militant. more >>
WASHINGTON — Although Iraqi refugees who fled their homes to escape ISIS are now homeless and living in tents, containers and other makeshift housing arrangements in the Kurdish north, Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali said Wednesday that the morale of displaced refugees is much higher than the media is portraying.
Nazir-Ali, who is the former Anglican Bishop of Rochester, an author and current president of the Oxford Centre for Training, Research, Advocacy and Dialogue, explained during a discussion at the Heritage Foundation that the non-discriminatory involvement that the Christian church community has put forth in supporting Iraqi refugees of all faiths has led those displaced by the barbaric Islamic State to be uncharacteristically hopeful.
Along with an ecumenical delegation of bishops, Nazir-Ali recently visited with refugees in northern Iraq as a guest of the Chaldean Catholic Church and was astounded to find that the refugees, who have lost just about everything due to ISIS, were in much higher spirits than he was led to believe before his visit. more >>
American Keith Broomfield, who according to his mother recently turned his life over to God, died as a volunteer fighter against ISIS on June 3 in northern Syria.
Donna Broomfield told NBC News from her home in Westminster, Massachusetts, "I didn't want him to go but I didn't have a choice in the matter. He turned his life over to the Lord and he decided this was God's will and God wanted him to do it."
Broomfield's mother told NBC that what she's waiting for now is "for his body to come back." more >>
President Barack Obama has ordered an additional 450 U.S. troops be deployed to Iraq, but insisted that they will not engage in battle with terror group ISIS. The U.S. has 3,050 forces stationed in the country, but they are focused on training Sunni militias and providing other types of support.
"To improve the capabilities and effectiveness of partners on the ground, the president authorized the deployment of up to 450 additional U.S. military personnel to train, advise and assist Iraqi Security Forces," the White House said in a statement on Wednesday.
Elissa Slotkin, the principal deputy assistant secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, added: "These forces, again, will provide an advisory, training, and support role. They are not conducting offensive ground combat operations." more >>
It has been one year since Islamic State began its conquest of a third of Iraq and its destruction of that country's ancient Christian civilization. While a massive international aid effort has helped most of the exiled Christians to subsist, it is time to look for a new strategy to help them fully live.
In a blitzkrieg of mass deportations, beheadings, women-slave auctions, and imprisonment of children, ISIS captured Mosul on June 10, 2014, and from there the rest of Nineveh province, Iraq's Christian heartland. Apart from some who were taken hostage or killed, most of Nineveh's 150,000 Christian residents left behind all their possessions and managed to flee the jihadists' "convert-or-die" policy. (Two new books chronicle these events in detail: Christian Persecutions in the Middle East, by George Marlin, and Defying ISIS, by Johnnie Moore.)
For the past year, these survivors have put their lives on hold in miserable conditions in church-run camps in Iraqi Kurdistan and nearby countries, while anxiously waiting for someone to liberate their hometowns. As the dust settles on Ramadi — where late last month an overwhelming Iraqi force made a disorderly retreat from ISIS — it is clear that that day may be years in coming. more >>
One of Mosul's largest Christian churches is being destroyed and turned into a mosque for Islamic State jihadists.
The Islamic State terror group posted flyers throughout Mosul announcing in a decree that the Syrian Orthodox Church of St. Ephraim is reopening as the "mosque of the mujahideen" or jihad fighters. Christian symbols and relics have already been scrubbed and demolished from the ancient church.
It's believed that all Christians have either been executed or have evacuated the city since Islamic militants overran the area last year. Christians were told to flee or face execution. more >>