On Wednesday, the Kingdom of Jordan confirmed that one of their fighter planes had been taken out of the sky over Syria by ISIS forces. The Jordanian pilot was also confirmed captured, and his image began to appear on social media accounts linked to Islamic State militants.
This disturbing development was originally revealed to the press by the London-based watchdog group Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which indicated that the plane had gone down near the ISIS stronghold of Raqqa. “Another group, the Raqqa Media Center, said the warplane crashed near the village of Hamra Ghannam, adding that ISIS militants were searching the area in case there is another pilot,” Fox News reported.
RMC published a photograph said to be of the pilot who appeared wearing a white shirt as he was surrounded by 11 fighters, some of them masked. Another photograph published by the group showed the man — naked from the waist down and soaking wet — being captured by three gunmen as he was taken out of what appeared to be a lake.
RMC later posted a photograph of the Jordanian military identity card of the pilot identifying him as Mu’ath Safi Yousef al-Kaseasbeh who was born on May 29, 1988. A photograph of al-Kaseasbeh was also posted in the Petra report, but he was not named.
Analysts long believed that ISIS maintained the capability to shoot down not just military aircraft but passenger planes as well, but this is the first time the militant group has successfully shot down a warplane.