ISIS has discovered shocking new ways to execute its prisoners, according to a gruesome video which shows the drowning and blowing up of men accused of helping the United States and American allies bomb the terror group's bases.
Fox News reports that the seven-minute, all-Arabic language video was released June 23 by ISIS-linked social media accounts. In the video, the victims admit to their "crimes" but say they have been "treated well" by the militants. They are then executed in a variety of ways as a masked jihadi in military fatigues stands nearby.
Some prisoners, who are reportedly charged with spying on Islamic State fighters, are blown up in a car in a drone-style attack, while others are locked inside a steel cage and slowly lowered to drown in a pool. Masked fighters then pull the cage back up to show the men frothing at the mouth as they die.
In the final scene of the video, another group of prisoners, who are chained together, are killed after explosives placed on them detonate. Several of the men are shown decapitated by the massive blast, while others suffer horrific and fatal upper body injuries.
Experts who analyzed the video, which is believed to have been shot in Iraq's Nineveh Province near the predominantly Christian city of Mosul, say ISIS is seeking to tell the world that it is imprisoning and killing enemies of Islam under its strict interpretation of Sharia law.
"While ISIS likes the shock factor, these executions are chosen to show their compliance with sharia law," said Ryan Mauro, national security analyst for the New York-based Clarion Project. "ISIS is acting upon doctrines that say spies and apostates, those who leave Islam, are to be executed.
"ISIS will argue that these specific methods are justifiable according to Islam as they see it, and that they are not being barbaric just for the sake of it," he added. "Even its executions are an attempt to portray ISIS as the most legitimate followers of Islam."
Veryan Khan, editorial director for U.S.-based Terrorism Research & Analysis Consortium, also explained that ISIS hostages are forced to remain calm before the execution and confess their crimes to demonstrate both Islamic State generosity in their treatment of prisoners as well as the victim's knowledge they deserve this punishment.
Khan added that ISIS' sinister new killing methods are an attempt to once again grab the attention of the international community.
"Islamic State's propaganda machine is so prolific that it has to keep coming up with new ways to shock the world and impress their fan club. This means that they have to up the ante in order to gain more attention for each new release," Khan said.
"What is shocking is the style of each execution - it is no longer enough to behead, or to behead 21 men simultaneously, to burn them alive, or shoot them in mass firing squads. They must offer a triptych of executions, each more savage than the last," he continued.
Since overtaking large swathes of territory in Iraq and Syria to create its caliphate, ISIS has used gruesome propaganda videos to establish legitimacy and recruit foreign nationals.
In the past, group released videos of Western hostages being beheaded, including American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff, and British aid worker Alan Henning. They also produced a video of them barbarically burning Jordanian pilot Moaz al-Kasasbeh who was part of the US-led coalition fighting the group.
Meanwhile, the group has destroyed the tomb of Sheikh Mohammad Ali and another historic tomb near Palmyra, a UNESCO World Heritage Site dating back 2,000 years. The destruction comes just after the group announced it would begin "removing the landmarks of polytheism" in the area, CNN reports.