US Hopes Jordan Pilot’s Death Will Get Jordan Deeper Into ISIS War

Officials Hope Killing Has 'Electrifying Effect' on Jordan

Never one to let a crisis go to waste, US officials are expressing hope that the video showing the execution of a Jordanian pilot by ISIS will provide them an opportunity to rile up Jordan into escalating their involvement in the war.

Jordan’s Lt. Moaz al-Kasaesbeh is the first pilot from the US anti-ISIS war to be captured, and subsequently executed. Jordanian officials have responded with quick executions of some ISIS detainees, and threats for more.

Interestingly, the capture of Kasaesbeh and the risk ISIS could capture more pilots actually scared off the United Arab Emirates, one of the other nations involved in the air war.

ISIS seems interested in sucking Jordan deeper into the war in hopes of using it to mobilize their significant population of sympathizers in the country. The US, apparently, sees sucking Jordan further into the war as a benefit to them too.

Exactly why isn’t being stated, but with Jordan right along the Syrian border, it is already being used as a staging area for US-trained rebels. The US may believe that Jordan’s further involvement in the war means more involvement on that border.

Whether Jordan is going to take the bait remains to be seen, but officials are talking up showing that they aren’t going to be intimidated by the execution, so it seems probable that they will.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.