The White House has confirmed that an American citizen was killed last weekend in Syria, where he allegedly traveled with the intention of fighting for the extremist group Islamic State (EI).
“We knew the presence of the American citizen Douglas McAuthur McCain in Syria and we can confirm his death,” the spokesman of the National Security Council, Caitlin Hayden said Tuesday.
Although not openly confirmed his alleged affiliation with the EI hinted Jihadist background of the deceased to say in the same statement that the Obama administration ” continues to use all instruments at its disposal to prevent and deter individuals from traveling abroad to participate in violent jihad and to monitor returnees ” to America.
The news, conducted by NBC, seems to realize once again one of the biggest fears of Western governments: the growing presence of Europeans and Americans fighting in the jihadi ranks.
The press has identified McCain as a man of 33 years and amateur rap singer, born in Illinois but lived until recently in San Diego, California. NBC said it had seen pictures of your passport and your body, with “distinctive ” tattoo on her neck provided by opposition sources in Syria. According to the station, McCain was one of the three foreign jihadists were killed during fighting between forces of EI and Syrian Liberation Army last weekend in Syria.
The spokesman for the Department of State, Jennifer Psaki, had said Tuesday he could not confirm at this stage whether McCain died fighting for EI, although he acknowledged that diplomats was “in contact with the family ” and that it was is providing “all possible consular assistance.”
An uncle of the deceased, Ken McCain, told CNN that the State Department notified them of the death of Douglas on Monday. The station, like other media, and claimed since Tuesday afternoon that officials had confirmed on condition of anonymity that the deceased fought with jihadists. His family said he knew only that McCain had traveled to Turkey, a route, moreover, common to those trying to enter Syria to join extremist ranks.
McCain, who comes from a Christian family, was converted to Islam a decade ago. According to Facebook and Twitter that are attributed in the past year was increasingly identified with Islamist positions. ” A warrior is needed to understand another warrior. Pray for ISIS ” (the Islamic State) asks retweeted a message from his account in June, where he signs as Duale Khalid and whose profile says: ” It is especially Islam. ” In April, he also hung up on Twitter a link to the English translation of the speech of the spokesman Abu Muhammad al Adnani EI.
After learning of his death, a woman who identified herself as the wife of McCain called Tuesday through the Facebook account of this (Duale ThaslaveofAllah, translatable as Duale, the slave of Allah) who ” have in their prayers.”
If McCain actually fought with IE, not the only American who travels to Syria to join the ranks of Islamic extremist groups in the Middle East.
In late July, a video in which a 22 year old who grew up in Florida, Moner Abusalha Mohammad, was exhibited threatening the U.S. and other countries and breaking his American passport was released: ” Infidels, go for you,” proclaimed the young member of the Front Nusra and died in May in a suicide bombing in northern Syria.
The American government believes that there is at least ” a handful ” of cases of Americans struggling to jihadist groups, according to NBC officials said last week.
The sources spoke to the station following the execution of American journalist James Foley, who was brutally murdered by the EI -the same organization that McCain would fight after being kidnapped for almost two years in Syria.
His alleged torturer, a man next to Foley in the video in which the EI recorded his beheading and then threatens to kill another American journalist, Steven Sotloff has a British accent, which has led authorities to UK to begin a frantic search for his identity. For now, the tracks on ” Jihad John ” (John Jihadist), as the British press has dubbed, seem to lead to a 23 year old raised near London who, like McCain, was an amateur rapper.
According to AP, the EI would have on their hands at least a third American hostage. This is a 26 year old woman who performed humanitarian work in Syria at the time of his abduction, last year, confirmed the young family to the American news agency, which did not reveal his identity for security reasons. The EI has threatened to kill Sotloff and, presumably, the other American hostages in their hands, if President Barack Obama does not stop air strikes against their positions in Iraq, something the White House has refused.
After the brutal execution of Foley, American Government admitted that he tried to free the American hostages in the hands of EI in a special operation sometime this summer in Syria that failed because the hostages were not in the place to be thought were being held.