Uniformed U.S. Airman Sets Himself on Fire Near Israeli Embassy in D.C.

Ali Khaligh/Getty Images
Ali Khaligh/Getty Images

An active-duty U.S. airman set himself on fire in front of the Israeli Embassy in Washington, D.C., the U.S. Air Force confirmed Sunday evening, just hours after the fiery incident unfolded.

He is now in critical condition at a local hospital, D.C. Fire and Emergency Services (FEMS) confirmed to The Daily Beast.

D.C. FEMS responded to a call about a person on fire just before 1 p.m. on Sunday, a spokesman said. “We arrived to find an apparent adult male who had been on fire,” Vito Maggiolo, the FEMS public information officer, said, adding that U.S. Secret Service members had extinguished it. The man was rushed to a local hospital to be treated for “critical life-threatening injuries.”

The Air Force confirmed that the man involved is an active-duty service member. In a video of the stunt, the airman uses a name that matches a LinkedIn profile for an active-duty Air Force officer based in Texas.

That video appears to show the man shouting “Free Palestine” as he self-immolates wearing Air Force fatigues. He has not been identified.

A similar incident occurred in December when a protester self-immolated at the Israeli consulate in Atlanta. Authorities discovered a Palestinian flag near the consulate, part of the protest against Israel’s ongoing military action in the Gaza Strip.

A request for comment by The Daily Beast was not answered by the Israeli Embassy.

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