Confusion within the ISIS propaganda machine led to a hasty apology being issued yesterday as the video showing the brutal execution of Journalist Steven Sotloff was apparently accidentally leaked before the agreed time.
Despite this it seems to have still had the desired effect, having caused revulsion and a further bout of self-censorship in the Western world.
Although all accounts involved have now been suspended, Vocactiv reports the bizarre situation where ISIS rushed to apologise for a slight apparent error in social media etiquette, while blithely sharing videos showing extreme murderous violence.
Isis Twitter user @Khattabyaz said “A clarification about the mistake was made by “Uyun al-Ummah” account, that has published the video before the official time.
“The user saw a tweet with the video and thought it was published officially. We tried to remove the video after we understood that his was published by mistake, and we are sorry to the followers of the Islamic State.”
The video appears to be part of a chain of events which at present shows no sign of slowing. When journalist James Foley was beheaded by a British Jihadi fighter believed to possibly be rapper Abdel-Majed Abdel Bary, the video ended with executioner Abdel standing by Sotloff with the stark warning that if air strikes didn’t end, he would be next.
A fortnight later, a video apparently recently recorded was released with the execution of Sotloff and ending with another hostage lined up and acting as yet another warning. The hostage this time is a British security contractor taken hostage in Syria last year, who is not being named in British media at the request of his family. The British government has declared “every possible option” is being considered, including air strikes, to prevent the hostage becoming the next victim of Jihadi John.