Ibrahim Hashimi, the terrorist leader, was indeed blown up, but… to the ground. The force of the explosive charge of the vest he was wearing, in addition to killing everyone on the third floor of the building where he was hiding, pushed his body outwards until it fell to the ground. There he was found by American soldiers who were trying to capture him.
Gen. Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr, head of U.S. Central Command, described the scene at the building in Atmeh, Syria, where U.S. forces had approached Hashimi in what was a mission to apprehend him. Instead, the explosion, “more massive than you would expect from a suicide vest, killed everyone on the third floor” of the building, McKenzie said during an online forum organized by the Middle East Institute.
Although not as famous as Abu Bakr Baghdadi, his predecessor, “he was just as evil and just as committed to attacks against the United States and our partners,” the military official said.
McKenzie described him as “an operational planner and director of operations” who had been “directly or indirectly responsible for numerous atrocities,” including against the Yazidi population. His death now “makes it more difficult for [the Islamic State] to present an integrated global approach,” McKenzie said. While he noted that decentralized Islamic State units might be harder to track, “when you don’t have a central core that can disburse money, it will be harder for them to get resources.”
During the raid, U.S. forces were able to evacuate 10 people, eight children, six of whom were on the second floor.