National Security

Latest ISIS Video Praises Orlando Attack, Calls For Attacks On New York And Washington

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Russ Read Pentagon/Foreign Policy Reporter
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The Islamic State’s most recent propaganda video heaps praise upon the Orlando terrorist attack and calls for further attacks on New York, Washington and Orlando.

Produced by the al-Battar media foundation, an unofficial ISIS media arm, the video was released sometime shortly after the Sunday attack. It included the typical flashy graphics and high-quality editing typically found in the terrorist group’s propaganda.

A timeline appears at the beginning of the video, beginning with “2001: beginning of war on terror” with President George W. Bush’s voice in the background. It then fades to “2011: they (the West) thought that it has come to an end.” The timeline then finishes with an animated image of a handgun shooting the words “homosexual nightclub Orlando, Florida.” The video says the attack was committed by “an Islamic State fighter.”

An homage is paid to the Orlando shooter later in the video. Battar refers to him as one of the Islamic State’s “lions” supposedly avenging the Muslim community.

“He shook the head of kufr America, terrorized it and shed its blood,” said the video. “Kufr” is an Arabic term frequently used by radicals that refers to a person who rejects Islam.

The video utilizes the typical ISIS threats and statements of incitement, calling for “blood for blood.” Taking further claim for the Orlando attack, the video also cuts to a press briefing where a law enforcement official confirmed Mateen’s pledge to ISIS.

Increased attacks are called for towards the latter half of the video. Battar warns “the men of the Islamic State are everywhere.” The video then claims that the Islamic State has “alerted” its supporters to strike unbelievers in their own lands. French and Belgian officials warned Wednesday morning that they believe terrorist groups from Syria are currently traveling to both countries in order to engage in terrorist attacks.

While ISIS initially called upon supporters to come join the group in Iraq and Syria, recent propaganda videos have instead encouraged them to commit attacks abroad. The video quotes ISIS spokesman Abu Muhammad al-Adnani, who has previously noted that it is actually better for followers to stage attacks abroad, as they are more “effective.”

“Truly, the smallest act you do in their lands is more beloved to us than the biggest act done here,” reads the quote.

Calls for attacks abroad have coincided with ISIS losses in the territory in Iraq and Syria, the area that Secretary of Defense Ash Carter calls the “parent tumor.” The terrorist group had also previously called for an increase in violence during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, which runs from June 5 to July 5 this year. ISIS has frequently engaged in offensives during Ramadan, going back to its initial rise in 2014.

The video ends with a call for further violence in U.S. cities while “Fallujah, Raqqah and Manbaj are being attacked.” All three ISIS-held cities are currently under some form of attack from either U.S.-backed forces, U.S. air power or both.

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