That said, like every normal human being I was utterly shocked to learn of the gruesome fate of Lieutenant Muath Al-Kasasbeh, posthumously promoted Captain, of No.1 Squadron, the Royal Jordanian Air Force.
I did not watch the video to the end. I clicked the pause bars the moment Lt. Al-Kasasbeh started whipping his forearms up in instinctive gestures to shield his face.
I am a Christian, though admittedly not a good one - I know my many faults and weaknesses. In my faith, we learn that Man was created in God's image. I will let morally depraved leftists laugh at that notion. I deem them, who consider themselves so smart and 'sophisticated', not intelligent enough to grasp the deeper lying implication of that oft-quoted Biblical expression. That implication is not that Up There, some manlike almighty God sits in clouds to reward those who do good, and punish those who are bad. No, it is rather that because humans were crafted 'like God', they are themselves unique, precious, and of unfathomable value.
The willful destruction of a human being is therefore an appalling thing. Especially when it is done in a way that is meant to show the audience in the minutest details how the victim is reduced to ashes - literally.
Of course, the history of mankind is full of that deliberate destruction of humans by humans. The most widespread and "efficient" practice of this habit is called war. Christians know that killing other humans is a sin; yet they also know that sometimes it is a necessary evil, that killing villains will prevent the killing, on a larger scale, of innocents.
This is why I am morally at ease with the use of deadly violence against "the bad". Whether they are called Nazis, Khmer Rouge, Taliban... or ISIS.
Captain Al-Kasasbeh was, unlike me, directly in the frontline of the war against the subhumans of islamic state - even though he was himself a muslim.
The very graphic video of one individual risks to push the many other gruesome murders of militant islam to the background. We know the captain's face, we know his parents, we have come across some scant information of the kind of person he was - in all likelihood an amiable person. It is easy, because of that focus on Muath, to forget literally hundreds of Nigerians who have met the same fate as the Jordanian pilot. To forget tens, if not more, of Pakistani Christians. And many more across the planet who fell victim to islamic barbarity.
But because we now know Captain Al-Kasasbeh so good, comparatively speaking, we... may perhaps take the liberty to see him as the representative of all those countless others.
Muath leaves behind a grieving family and a widow - only last September, he married Anwar Tarawneh. Pray for them all.