The Islamic State has released a 2-minute, 46-second video showing the beheading of Steven Sotloff, according to the SITE Intelligence Group. Sotloff, an American journalist, had been seen in captivity in an earlier video of the killing of his fellow prisoner, James Foley.
SITE shared the (extremely disturbing) video here as evidence of the Islamic State's work. The video ran in similar fashion to the one that depicted Foley's murder: Sotloff read a prepared script, the English speaking executioner issued threats and recriminations to U.S. viewers and leaders, and the video faded to black, returning to show Sotloff's body.
Sotloff, a Miami native and graduate of the University of Central Florida, was captured in Syria in August 2013. Last week, after Foley's death, Sotloff's mother had issued a respectful plea to her son's captors to "be merciful and not punish my son."
At the close of the video, Sotloff's killer introduces another orange-clad prisoner to the camera, a Briton named David Cawthorne Haines, suggesting that Haines, too, will die if the U.S. and its allies do not "back off, and leave our people alone."
Update: SITE, which originally hosted the video, has apparently taken it down. Its blog has a transcript of the recording, including Sotloff's final statement and this, from his murderer:
I'm back, Obama, and I'm back because of your arrogant foreign policy towards the Islamic State, because of your insistence on continuing your bombings and [unclear] on Mosul Dam, despite our serious warnings. You, Obama, have but to gain from your actions but another American citizen. So just as your missiles continue to strike our people, our knife will continue to strike the necks of your people...