ISLAMIC STATE MANIFESTO: CALL TO AMERICA

Uncle SamIn a war of ideas, it is people who get killed – Stanislaus J. Lec

With the release of the Islamic State (IS) Manifesto we see the latest installment from IS’ intensive, digitally propelled Information Operations (IO) machine. The message is that Muslims are being persecuted worldwide and Islam is under attack. This is a familiar refrain and one that is being dredged up from previous conflicts for its continued effectiveness. With this production they take it to the next level by publishing a ‘fatwa’ approving the use of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) to kill as many as ten million Americans. The video issuing the speech and fatwa by this IS leader was posted on the internet in multiple languages. Of interest is the move by authorities to censor the manifesto, especially given the number of ultra-violent videos from IS showing graphic violence, already available. More important is the building theme with each IS media release, that America and the coalition are falling steadily further behind in the war of ideas.

Fatwa |ˈfätwä|noun: a ruling on a point of Islamic law given by a recognized authority.

WMD: Weapons capable of a high order of destruction and/or of being used in such a manner as to destroy large numbers of people. Weapons of mass destruction can be high explosives or nuclear, biological, chemical, and radiological weapons, but exclude the means of transporting or propelling the weapon where such means is a separable and divisible part of the weapon.

English transcripts are still available for anyone still interested in general content.

THE ISIS MANIFESTO: WHAT EVERY AMERICAN NEEDS TO KNOW ABOUT ISIS PLAN TO KILL ‘TEN MILLION AMERICANS’ (shoebat.com)

ISIS CHIEF CALLS ON FOLLOWERS WORLDWIDE TO WAGE JIHAD

 

One does not need to be a subject matter expert to understand some ground truths regarding our deficit in this area, or why our Department of State (DOS) and Pentagon are consistently being outclassed by their IS counterparts. There is almost a complete dearth of information operations being conducted by our government or its agencies to dissuade the opposition and their prospective recruits. Islamic State understands the value of sending a strong core message (victory, the caliphate, jihad) to the target audience, and their IO machine is tireless in its efforts to crank out their message often and emphatically. Consider the following video, typical of their productions. Its message is clear and appeals to their audience.

SHOCKING VIDEO SHOWS THE EXTENT OF EXECUTIONS IN IRAQ BY ISIS (dailymail.co.uk)

The Man Behind the ISIS Media Curtain Ahmad Abousamra (isisstudygroup.com)

By contrast our DOS operates a Twitter feed, @Thinkagainturnaway, previously covered in the ISIS Study Group piece: State Department Failure: Messaging Gaffes Miss Mark Completely. The IS makes a bold appeal to their audience and lures them using images depicting power, violence and victory over the enemies of Islam. The DOS Twitter feed responds in a fashion reminiscent of college campus politics or some hipster think tank. IS makes a video of a beheading and DOS responds by targeting them with a hash tag and a pithy phrase. In short, there is no comparison between the effectiveness of IS products and the one-trick pony that is @Thinkagainturnaway.

Read more at ISIS Study Group

ISIS Releases ‘Flames of War’ Feature Film to Intimidate West

A screen shot from 'Flames of War.' The American narrator of the film is on the far left.

A screen shot from ‘Flames of War.’ The American narrator of the film is on the far left.

After releasing the trailer last week, the Islamic State released the full film — a gory, bravado flick showcasing their ruthless tactics in Syria.

By Ryan Mauro:

True to its promise, the Islamic State terrorist group released a 55-minute video (see below) narrated by an operative in Syria with an American accent.  At the same time, Al-Qaeda has released a new video (see below) featuring an American recruit named Adam Gadahn calling on Muslims to pursue regime change in Pakistan.

The Islamic State video is far above the Al-Qaeda video in terms of production. The 55-minute film, titled Flames of War, is professionally edited and highlights the Islamic State’s seizure of the Syrian Army’s 17th Division base near Raqqah.

Footage is shown from the attack and then the film shows an Islamic State fighter near the base speaking in fluent English with an American accent. Captured Syrian soldiers are shown digging their own graves. One claims that 800 of Assad’s troops were at the base and were defeated by only 20-30 Islamic State members. The captives are then shot point blank and shown gruesomely falling in the ditches.

Flames of War uses the narrator to explain the Islamic state’s version of the events, namely, that they are merely trying to establish god’s law on earth but are being attacked by Assad, the Americans, the West and various other foes.

The film utilizes romantic imagery carefully crafted to appeal to dissatisfied and alienated young men, replete with explosions, tanks and self-described mujahedeen winning battles. Anti-American rhetoric provides the voice-over to stop motion and slow motion action sequences. The use of special effects such as bullet-time is interspersed with newsreel footage.

This up-to-date, sophisticated cinematography combined with the bloodthirsty message the film makes Flames of War reminiscent of Hitler propagandist Leni Riefenstahl’s 1935 film, Triumph of the Will.

The film finishes with a written statement from Islamic State “Caliph” Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi referring to the U.S. as the “defender of the cross.” The message appears to indicate that the group believes U.S. combat forces will be sent to Iraq.

“As for the near future, you will be forced into a direct confrontation, with Allah’s permission, despite your reluctance. And the sons of Islam have prepared themselves for this day, so wait and see, for we too are also going to wait and see,” it says.

The new Al-Qaeda video with Adam Gadahn is simple and only features a lecture from him. The contrast between the two videos is a microcosm of how Al-Qaeda has faded into the background as the Islamic State has risen and is winning the next generation ofjihadists.

Read more at Clarion Project

View Flames of War, Full film:

 

View Pakistani Regime: The Agent of the Devil:

 

Also see:

Beheading Raises Islamic State Street Cred

378657_ISIL-David-Haines-450x341Frontpage, by Dawn Perlmutter, September 16, 2014:

The Sept. 13, 2014 beheading video of David Haines, British aid worker and military veteran, is almost identical to the Foley and Sotloff productions establishing an Islamic State forensic signature, PSYOPS pattern and a winning recruitment strategy. The David Haines beheading video titled “A message to the allies of America” is addressed to Prime Minister David Cameron who failed rapper turned jihadi executioner calls the “obedient lapdog” of America. This expression is a double insult signifying that he is controlled by America and intrinsically impure. The in your face disrespect will have particular appeal in recruiting British Islamists. Although the latest victim David Haines is British, the beheading video continues to symbolically reference Gitmo by making the hostages wear orange clothing. The disarticulated head placed on the center back of the body is identical to the forensic signature of the beheadings by Al Qaeda in Iraq, the predecessor group to Islamic State. The end of the video is a uniquely terrifying characteristic of IS messaging displaying their next victim, in this case hostage Alan Henning.  Similar to the two previous videos, Haines is not murdered on film and only ten seconds of the 2:30 second film displays violent imagery. Unlike the Foley and Sotloff videos that humiliated President Obama the Haines video was easily accessible online.

Although the beheading video was addressed to Prime Minister Cameron it was also a response to the ineffectiveness of President Obama’s September 10, 2014 speech that obviously did not strike fear into the hearts of the IS. The Presidents refusal to call the Islamic State by their chosen name or to recognize them as Islamic or a state not only demonstrated his inability to understand the threat but symbolically reflected an unwillingness to know and face the enemy. A semiotic principle expressed in magical thinking is that fear of naming something represents actual fear of the thing itself. Ancient societies believed in word magic, the idea that words, particularly names are imbued with magical powers. They attached great importance to the knowledge of names and believed that to know the true name of something gives one power over it. Furthermore it was a common belief that pronouncing the names of gods or demons in their original form and language would bring them into existence. That is the origin of the expression ‘speak of the devil and he will appear’. To name something makes it real and a force to be reckoned with. Hence to choose politically correct messaging that creates taboo words such as Islamic, State or War has the unintended consequence of evincing fear and weakness. Conversely, tribal warrior cultures like the Islamic State instinctively understand the power of words.

The significance of names as a form of symbolic warfare is evident in gang graffiti where it is common for gang members to cross out names of rival gangs. For example, to spray paint over another gangs tag, cross it out and then put your name up right next to it is an act of disrespect. Crossing out a rivals name and putting a ‘K’ next to it, signifies your intent to kill a member of that rival gang if they come into your territory. This is precisely the same message that the Islamic State sent in their beheading videos, if you enter our territory we will kill a member of your gang. By making good on their threats to kill, the Islamic State raised their street cred. Their credibility and level of respect is what attracts new recruits. Islamic State beheading videos and social media messaging should be interpreted in the same manner as gang codes. For example, the hundreds of IS beheadings of soldiers and civilians can be understood as initiation rituals similar to the concept of ‘Blood in Blood Out’ which requires a new member to commit murder. The beheading videos can be viewed as similar to the revenge threats coded in gang graffiti dissing President Obama and Prime Minister Cameron. Similar to gangs without the appropriate timely, symbolic and proportional response the videotaped revenge killings will not only continue but escalate.

Islamic State recruitment has been so successful because they understand the signs, symbols and language of the street and the urge to jihad. This is evident in the thousands of Westerners they recruited to join the fight in Syria and Iraq. Conversely The State Department’s ‘Think Again Turn Away’ campaign demonstrates a fundamental misunderstanding of jihadist messaging. The campaign which utilizes twitter, Facebook and jihadist own violent imagery to attempt to dissuade foreign recruitment into IS is based upon a nonexistent we-are-the-world shared humanitarian rational worldview that presumes everyone is appalled by acts of brutality.  The campaign is based on a false premise that permeates President Obama’s policies and strategies, a fallacy of universal characteristics of human nature, in this case the belief that all people are inherently good and strive for the same things. The Obama fallacy can only comprehend beheadings, violence and terrorism as a direct or indirect result of oppression, colonization, child abuse, poverty, lack of education or some other social ill.  This dangerous misconception is also responsible for the inexplicable denial that countries can be invaded and conquered in the 21st century and the denial that Islamist jihadists around the globe want to rule the world.

While the state department sometimes utilizes the words shame and honor in their messaging they completely misunderstand the nature of warrior honor cultures, particularly the importance of instilling fear, showing strength and making good on their threats. Once the Islamic State took control of cities, like any gang or cartel, any attempts to reclaim designated territory provokes revenge killings.  The president’s refusal to acknowledge the conquered territory in Iraq and Syria as an Islamic State reveals that the administration does not comprehend that when Westerners join IS they are essentially pledging allegiance to another country, the enemies of America. Instead of ‘Think Again Turn Away’, a better slogan would be ‘Join Jihad, Lose Citizenship, Stay Away’.

Similar to President Obama the Prime Minister refuses to call the enemy by name and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg does not recognize them as a state. In response to the beheading of David Haines Prime Minister David Cameron said, ‘They are killing and slaughtering thousands of people – Christians, Muslims, minorities across Iraq and Syria. They boast of their brutality. They claim to do this in the name of Islam. That is nonsense. Islam is a religion of peace. They are not Muslims, they are monsters”….“This murderous organisation calls itself Islamic State. But it is not a state, it is a brutal terrorist outfit” The hundreds of potential British recruits interpret this language as punk ass fear unworthy of respect. The Islamic State names their enemies and through the power of words, images and videos they sounded a call to arms throughout the world. Their first strategic advantage is their willingness to name their adversary, hence the acknowledgement that they are ready, willing and able to confront the West. Their second strategic advantage is the West’s reluctance to name them which allows Islamist jihadists to live in America and Britain hiding in plain sight. It’s time for the West to properly name, thereby, accept the nature of their enemy.

BREITBART’S GORKA: ‘EVERY AMERICAN’ SHOULD WATCH ISIS BEHEADING VIDEO

Gorka3
Breitbart, 9/14/14

On Sunday’s broadcast of “Fox & Friends Weekend” on the Fox News Channel, Dr. Sebastian Gorka, the national security editor of Breitbart, discussed ISIS’s use of social media to further their cause by using it to bring in new recruits.

ISIS has released a number of beheading videos that have brought the terrorist group a lot of attention in recent weeks, those of which “Fox & Friends Weekend” co-host Clayton Morris said he had refused to watch. However, Gorka encouraged Morris and other Americans to watch the videos in order to have a understanding of the “brutality” of this enemy.

“Well, look, number one, I think you should watch it. Every American, everybody who stands for the values of this republic needs to watch these videos because then you understand the nature of the threat of the brutality of the people we’re facing. Who is doing it? They have a whole recruiting pool. It’s very, very slick. Think about one thing — just two weeks ago, Ayman al-Zawahiri, the head of al Qaeda issued a 55-minute lecture in Arabic. You’re absolutely right, that’s not going to bring you recruits. That’s not going to further your cause as a jihadist. These people do instant little messages. They do these short videos. They have a very, very professional audio/visual social media crew.”

The full videos of the four experts who did the analysis of the Islamic State propaganda release

isis-video-hed-2014-652x330Vlad Tepes, Sep. 12, 2014:

Here are the full videos by Christian Zeitz, Robert Spencer, Bill Warner and David Wood. Those who saw the official release and feel they would like more, may enjoy this more comprehensive set of analysis by these scholars.

 

 

 

 

And of course, the actual video these were all filmed to create:

The Real Islam:

 

Global drive to stop jihadis going to Syria, Iraq

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By Lori Hinnant:

PARIS: New laws make it easier to seize passports. Suspected fighters are plucked from planes. Authorities block finances and shut down radical mosques. And behind the scenes, Silicon Valley firms are under increasing pressure to wipe extremist content from websites as Western intelligence agencies explore new technologies to identify returning fighters at the border.

Governments from France to Indonesia have launched urgent drives to cut off one of the ISIS’ biggest sources of strength: foreign fighters. At the heart of the drive is mounting concern that the organization is training the next generation of international terrorists.

Those fears have gained urgency from the group’s horrific methods: A British militant is suspected of beheading two American journalists, and a Frenchman who fought with the ISIS is accused in a deadly attack on a Jewish museum in Belgium.

With each video that ricochets around social networks, the militants gain new recruits.

Britain has taken a particularly active role in censoring content deemed to break the country’s strict rules against extremist propaganda. U.K. officials recently revealed they have been granted “super flagger” status on sites such as YouTube, meaning their requests to remove videos with grisly content or that encourage terrorism are fast-tracked.

Over the past four years, an Internet-focused counterterror unit of London’s Metropolitan Police instigated the removal of 45,000 pieces of content, the force said last week. ISIS, however, have just as quickly found other, more decentralized platforms.

In the United States, officials are trying to identify potential jihadists by comparing travel patterns with those of people who have already joined the fight, a counterterrorism official said, speaking only on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss intelligence matters.

A French law to seize passports is being fast-tracked through parliament, and the government is ramping up arrests of increasingly young teenagers making plans for jihad.

That can mean last-minute arrests at the airport, as happened to a 16-year-old girl and her alleged recruiter trying to pass through security in Nice Saturday, and to a man at Australia’s Melbourne Airport who was pulled off a flight last week carrying tens of thousands of dollars in cash and ISIS’ black-and-white flag in his luggage.

Britain proposed laws Monday to let police seize the passports of those suspected of having traveled abroad to fight, while the Netherlands is making it easier to strip people of their nationality and go after Internet providers that spread propaganda.

In Bosnia, authorities carried out a major anti-terror sweep Wednesday. They detained 16 people suspected of fighting in Syria and Iraq and recruiting Balkan men to join militants there.

Anti-jihadist efforts are being ramped up in traditionally Muslim countries as well: Indonesia is breaking up meetings of ISIS supporters and seizing T-shirts and other items promoting the group, and Tunisia is shutting down mosques and suspected financiers.

For the radicals who have already reached Syria, the focus of European spy agencies is on trying to identify them when they return. That can mean scouring social media sites for photos of foreign fighters or electronic intercepts for hints of terrorist activity abroad.

Officials are considering the deployment of more advanced techniques like voice recognition to identify suspected jihadis at border control by matching their conversations to those heard on militants’ videos, former U.K. counterterrorism chief Bob Quick told the Associated Press earlier this year.

There is huge interest, he said, in “being able to identify these people at the border.”

The concern is that returning fighters will launch attacks at home. Australia draws on lessons from Afghanistan a decade ago, saying of the 25 citizens who returned to Australia after fighting against Western interests there, two-thirds became involved in terrorist activities back home. Some remain in prison.

“The Australians and their supporters who have joined terrorist groups in the Middle East are a serious and growing threat to our security,” Prime Minister Tony Abbott told Parliament Monday. “People who kill without compunction in other countries are hardly likely to be law-abiding citizens should they return to Australia.”

A compilation of government estimates shows more than 2,000 people with European passports have fought or are fighting in Syria and Iraq – with most looking to join ISIS.

Read more at Daily Star

 

The American computer wiz running brutally effective ISIS social media campaign

  • Ahmad Abousamra, 32, was raised in an upscale Boston suburb and attended private school
  • He graduated with Northeastern with a technology-related degree and worked for a telecommunications company
  • Authorities believe he is now running the media wing of ISIS 
  • Social media has helped to promote the atrocities of the brutal terrorist group and encourage jihadists from across the world to join the ranks

 

By  MICHAEL ZENNIE:

A college educated American citizen with a knack for computers is believed to be one of the men running the brutally effective ISIS social media operation, which is helping to attract hundreds of fighters from across the world – including the U.S., Britain and Canada.

Ahmad Abousamra, 32, is a Syrian-American who is the son of prominent Boston doctor

Ahmad Abousamra, 32, is a Syrian-American who is the son of prominent Boston doctor

Ahmad Abousamra, 32, was born in France and raised in the upscale Boston suburb of Stoughton. His father is a prominent endocrinologist at Massachusetts General Hospital. He attended the exclusive Xaverian Brothers Catholic high school and made the Dean’s List at Northeastern University.

He graduated with a degree in a technology field then took a job at a telecommunications company.

U.S. officials tell ABC News that he is now putting his skills to work for ISIS, the brutal terrorist organization that has been effectively using 21st century methods like Twitter memes, Facebook posts, selfies and YouTube videos to promote its radical 6th century Islamic ideals.

In 2004, federal authorities say, Abousamra left his American life behind and traveled to Iraq in the hopes of fighting U.S. soldiers as part of Al-Qaeda in Iraq.

Instead, he was recruited to the groups ‘media wing.’

‘If you do have a European language ability, if you have computer skills, if you are quite clever and you come join ISIS, you are likely to be used for social media output,’ Peter Neumann, the director of the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation, told ABC.

Read more at Daily Mail

#Jihad: how Isis is using social media to win support

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How successful this social media campaign has been may be seen on Friday in the numbers of people who respond to the call for global support.

Channel 4 News:

The Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (Isis) is not just battling its way into the cities of Iraq it is also fighting for global support and action via a major social media campaign.

A sophisticated social media campaign, backed up by slick videos, is being used to call for support from abroad.

The (training) camps and houses of the mujahedeen are open for every Muslim and Baghdad is the battlefield of every Muslim.Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi

At the centre of this campaign is a new video released by Isis, the extremist group which has taken control of cities across northern Iraq including Mosul and Tikrit, featuring what is said to be the voice of Isis leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

In the video, which was posted yesterday and has had 30,000 views so far, al-Baghdadi calls for “Sunni youths” to join the Isis jihad.

“I appeal to the youths and men of Islam around the globe and invoke them to mobilise and join us to consolidate the pillar of the state of Islam and wage jihad against the rafidhas (Shia), the safadis of Shi’ites,” al-Baghdadi says.

“The (training) camps and houses of the mujaheddin are open for every Muslim and Baghdad is the battlefield of every Muslim against the safadis (Shia). So come on, youths of Islam.”

He goes on to say: “Be prepared in arms and keep your finger on the trigger and be ready for the zero moment for the decisive battle which is now upon us.”

One billion campaignjihadist recru

Supporting this video are a host of other videos, in different languages, calling for support from abroad.

The “one billion campaign” calls for Muslims across the world to show their support for the Isis cause, especially on Friday, and even to come and join it.

“Proudly support the Muslim cause”, the videos say, and “fully support Isis”.

A number of Muslims speaking different languages appear in the videos, showing the campaign is targeting people in Tunisia, Algeria, Libya, Egypt, Yemen and France appealing for people to protest on Friday in support of Isis, or to travel to Iraq to fight.

Men in the video call to “young men and Muslims in various parts of the world”. The videos were posted on Tuesday and by 4pm had received 3,500 views.

‘Rush to the battlefield’

And it is not just French and Arabic languages that are being used to recruit support for the Isis campaign – videos are appearing with English translations as well.

A slick video produced by AlHayat Media Centre includes translation of an Isis song, Let’s Go For Jihad, which calls for people to “rush to the battlefield”, “claim your victory” and “slaughter until the day of judgement”.

The gritty footage, heavy with explosions, gunfire and slow motion effects, looks as though it could have been lifted from a video game – another sign, perhaps, of the young target audience.

It echoes, as well, the words of a British Isis fighter, Abu Summayyah al-Britani, in a podcast published earlier this week in which he said fighting in Syria was better than playing Call of Duty.

The social media campaign indicates a shift in the approach of Isis – previously an insular group – to one that is actively recruiting from across the world.

The sophistication of the campaign is also seen in its promotion of an official Isis twitter application – free to download – which keeps the user updated on the latest news from jihad.

Read more at Channel 4 News with video

Islamic State: Winning Over Next Generation of Jihadis

From an Islamic State propaganda image to lure new recruits through social media. Based on the popular video game, "Call of Duty."

From an Islamic State propaganda image to lure new recruits through social media. Based on the popular video game, “Call of Duty.”

Al Qaeda is out. The Islamic State is young, cool and successful — ironically utilizing the same Western culture it is out to destroy.

BY RYAN MAURO:

The Islamic State is winning over the next generation of Sunni jihadists for two main reasons: Success and “coolness.” Many Islamic State supporters are foul-mouthed, highly sarcastic rappers and gamers who mesh their Islamist ideology with their affection for Western culture.

None of this is what comes to mind when you think of jihadists, who usually express hatred for Western culture, viewing it as a corrupting influence.

If current trends persist, Al-Qaeda will become known as “your father’s terrorist group,” an organization that has gone out-of-style.

The first American member of the Islamic Stae to be killed was Douglas McAuthur McCain. He wanted to be a rapper and tweeted about smoking marijuana. Friends described him as a jokester. Derogatory remarks and cursing flowed on his Twitter account long after he became religious. He expressed hatred for white people after watching The Help, a 2011 film about the Civil Rights era.

The British citizen suspected of being the Islamic State’s beheader of American journalist James Foley, Abdel Majed Abdel Bary, also wanted to be a famous rapper and filled his lyrics with cursing. He made music videos, using a Western band’s background track in one of them.

In one song, Bary expressed how he was angry enough to kill after his father was arrested. His father, Adel Abdel Bary, was a senior Al-Qaeda member arrested in the United Kingdom for his involvement in the 1998 bombings of two U.S. embassies in Africa. Bary expressed admiration for his father in a rap song, saying “give me the pride and the honor like my father.”

The jihadist use of entertainment and artistic expression mostly associated with Western culture isn’t new, but the Islamic State brings it to a whole new level.

Read more at Clarion Project

Latest Islamic State Magazine Touts Foley Killing, Taunts Obama

IPT, by John Rossomando:

Al-Hayat Media, an important part of the Islamic State’s propaganda machine, released the third issue of its English-language jihadist publication Dabiq Friday. It released its first two editions of the magazine written in the style of Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula’s Inspire magazine earlier in August.

A recent article in the New Republic compared the first two editions of Dabiq with Inspire, saying the new magazine provided a more “comprehensive attempt to recruit westerners” than its Al-Qaida predecessor.

1058The cover, “A Call to Hijrah,” recalls the Muslim Prophet Muhammad’s journey from Mecca to Medina and reads like a glossy recruiting guide.

It sets up the United States as the boogeyman all Muslims must fight because Americans killed thousands of Muslims during their occupation of Iraq, calling their deaths “collateral damage.”

Dabiq gloats over James Foley’s beheading, calling it “a cooling balm for the believers’ hearts” that served “as a retribution for the recent American aggression against the Muslims of Iraq.”

It claims that the Obama administration was “dragging its feet” its feet for nine months trying to save Foley’s life and those of other American and British hostages held in the Islamic State’s dungeons. In the new issue, the Islamic State (also known as ISIS, or ISIL) again raises the administration’s refusal to release Aafia Siddiqui, who is serving an 86-year sentence for attempting to murder Americans in Afghanistan and plotting ‘mass-casualty’ attacks in New York.

Obama acts “more foolishly” than Bush on matters of foreign policy in the Middle East, the magazine says, and calls him an “apostate.”

The magazine also provides religious justification for Muslims living in the West to leave their countries and join the fight, depicting a Muslim society free from nationalism and where they can live in full accord with Islamic law and morality. It also uses guilt against Muslims who refuse to follow the Islamic State.

“So abandoning hijrah (migration to the Islamic State) – the path to jihad – is a dangerous matter. In effect, one is thereby deserting jihad and willingly becoming a hypocritical spectator,” the magazine said, criticizing Muslims in the West who live like their non-Muslim neighbors. “… [N]ow there is a Khalifah (Caliphate) prepared to accept every Muslim and Muslimah into lands and all it can within its power to protect them alone.”

The “life of jihad” it says is only possible if Muslims move to the Islamic State’s caliphate.”

Twitter suspends Islamic State accounts

IS-raqqa_3000570bTelegraph, By Rosa Prince:

Dozens of Twitter accounts linked to Islamic State (IS) jihadists have been closed down by the site’s administrators in the last week after they were used to threaten the United States and post a string of grisly images.

Members of the terror organisation apparently attempted to reactivate the blocked accounts but Twitter’s staff have repeatedly closed them down again.

The accounts had been used to boast of victories in Iraq and Syria and threaten US forces.

In one particularly graphic tweet, an Australian jihadi published a photograph of his seven-year-old son holding up a severed head.

IS used other accounts to terrify Twitter users by tricking them into viewing images of corpses using innocuous hashtags such as #Hawaii.

Also see:

Expressions Of Solidarity With ISIS In The West

from MEMRI’s Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM) June 30, 2014:

In April 2013, a rift was created in the global jihadi movement when the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI) announced that it was expanding into Syria and that it was changing its name to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Following this announcement, another jihadi organization in Syria, Jabhat Al-Nusra (JN), rejected ISIS’s authority, remaining loyal to Al-Qaeda leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri. ISIS even challenged Al-Zawahiri himself, refusing to follow his instructions to restrict itself to operating in Iraq. In early 2014, the rift escalated to violent conflict – ISIS versus JN and other jihadi organizations in bothIraq and Syria.

Having taken control of large areas of Iraq in recent months, ISIS is now enjoying increasing shows of solidarity from the Middle East and from across the Muslim world – and also from Western countries. Several factors contribute to its popularity, among them its jihad against the Americans in Iraq prior to its expansion into Syria, when it was ISI; its current struggle against Iraq’s Shi’ite government and its security forces – perceived as apparatuses for Shi’ite suppression of Sunnis; and its war against the Alawi Assad regime, which is an ally of the Shi’ites. ISIS’s activity on these fronts has helped bolster its image as the spearhead in the war against the enemies of Islam within and without the Muslim world, and raised its stature among supporters of global jihad.

Further adding to its popularity are ISIS’s achievements on the battlefields of Iraq and Syria, and its image as the only organization today that is actualizing authentic Islamic ideals and striving towards establishing the Islamic idea of a greater caliphate. It casts itself, and its propagandists depict it, as a legitimate sovereign body implementing shari’a law in areas under its control, and spreading Islam by means of jihad, thus forming the core of this future caliphate. Recently, ISIS spokesman Abu Muhammad Al-‘Adnani even called on Al-Qaeda to swear fealty to his organization, because the “state” it embodies supersedes any organization.[1]

Sympathy for ISIS extends also to its leader, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, who is seen by the organization’s fans as the legitimate leader of all Muslims. This is because of his religious education, his lineage, and his jihadi past. As a challenger to Al-Zawahiri, he is considered more charismatic and more capable of leading the Muslim ummah towards the longed-for caliphate. Thus, under Al-Baghdadi’s leadership, ISIS is emerging as an alternative to Al-Qaeda, and is seen as working diligently to actualize the Muslims’ goals without Al-Qaeda’s religion-based reservations about, for example, imposing the jizya poll tax on Christians or conducting mass killings of Shi’ites.

The persecution of ISIS, even by Al-Qaeda, adds to its status in many circles as an “underdog” fighting for the goals of Islam and the good of all Muslims. Additionally, its highly efficient propaganda apparatus circulates videos and publications via jihadi forums and social media, praising itself and criticizing its rivals and opponents.

Westerners Joining And Promoting ISIS

The Westerners who are leaving their home countries to join ISIS in its fight in Iraq and Syria also add to the organization’s prestige, both inside and outside the Muslim world. These volunteers are widely covered by the media in their own countries, and each new arrival also receives a fanfare in the organization’s local press outlets and social media; these volunteers themselves are usually very active users of social media, communicating with friends and family back home as well as followers and engaging in their own efforts to promote and recruit for the organization in the West.  

Further evidence of its sweeping popularity was the June 19, 2014 “One Billion Muslims Support ISIS” campaign, which urged ISIS sympathizers worldwide to express their support for the organization on  Friday, June 20, and even devised a special Twitter hashtag for the purpose. The campaign elicited considerable response from supporters in numerous participants, who posted images and videos expressing their support for ISIS.[2]

This Western support for ISIS is crucial to the group’s propaganda efforts; in addition to swelling the ranks of its fighters and bringing in funds and logistical support, it increases its prestige and deters its rivals.

Elements Used In Expressions Of Support For ISIS

These expressions of solidarity with ISIS on social and other media use common ISIS symbolism. They include posters of support for it and for Al-Baghdadi; the use of the slogan baqiya wa-tatmaddad, “will remain and spread”;[3] the black tawhid flag, widely used by other global jihad elements; and ISIS nasheeds, or Islamic songs.

Other expressions of solidarity include: photos of ISIS posters next to Western landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower in Paris, Big Ben in London, the Atomium building in Brussels, and the Coliseum in Rome; photos of ISIS posters alongside Western passports; and other images shared on social media. All these add to ISIS’s image of an organization on the rise, and may also indicate its expansionist ambitions.


Tawhid banner used by ISIS


A poster supporting the “One Billion Muslims” campaign (Source: Twitter.com/Minbar_s, June 19, 2014)

This report will present examples of support for ISIS from the West. A future report will present similar examples of support from the Middle East and the Muslim world.[4]

U.S.

At least two contributions to the One Billion Muslims campaign came from the U.S. One was a photo of a drawing of ISIS emblem against the backdrop of the New York City skyline, and the other was a photo of a sign of support for ISIS taken in downtown Chicago.


Source: Twitter.com/truthsMaster, June 20, 2014.


Sign reads: “The soldiers of the #Islamic State in Iraq and Syria will soon pass through here… ” June 20, 2014. Source: Twitter.com/msn291.

Read more at MEMRI

Emboldened ISIS Threatens Americans

by John Rossomando and Ravi Kumar
IPT News
June 26, 2014

ISIS’ Next Targets: Jordan and Saudi Arabia

An image from a propaganda video by ISIS showing their expansion plans from Iraq into Jordan and Saudi Arabia.

An image from a propaganda video by ISIS showing their expansion plans from Iraq into Jordan and Saudi Arabia.

The onslaught has already begun on social media, where ISIS is maintaining a slick, professional propaganda presence.

By Ryan Mauro:

The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), the former Al-Qaeda affiliate that has seized over one-third of Iraq, is open about its desire to establish a new caliphate with Baghdad as its capital. ISIS supporters are distributing propaganda on social media indicating its next targets towards that goal are Jordan and Saudi Arabia.

The image (above) shows territory in Iraq and Syria currently held by ISIS with arrows indicating future expansion into Jordan and Saudi Arabia. Interestingly, there are no arrows pointing into the Shiite-majority southern Iraq:

ISIS-Expansion-1

ISIS supporters are also spreading a graphic that purportedly shows its five-year plan to reestablish a caliphate that stretches from western Africa to Indonesia, conquering Israel, Iran and India. It was first spotted by NBC News foreign correspondent Ayman Mohyeldin. The picture lacks the professionalism of other ISIS-issued propaganda, perhaps indicating it reflects the aspiration of a supporter than a plan drawn up by the ISIS leadership.

ISIS and its supporters have proven to be masters of social media. Much of its online propaganda is in English and involves sarcasm and dark humor. One pro-ISIS account retweeted a joke about the national bird of Yemen and Pakistan being the drone. Supporters in Indonesia are also selling pro-ISIS clothing online. The group’s social media strength is so great that the Iraqi government is blocking Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Google.

Clarion Project national security analyst Ryan Mauro appeared on Fox & Friends on June 22 (see clip below) to discuss the use of ISIS by social media through Photoshop, a Twitter application for Android cell phones and well-produced videos.

Read more at Clarion Project