National Security

New ISIS Spokesman Makes Chilling Promise As Coalition Descends On Capital Cities

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Russ Read Pentagon/Foreign Policy Reporter
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The Islamic State’s named its new spokesman Monday, and his first statement offers a chilling threat against the West while the terrorist group’s two capital cities are under siege.

Abu Hassan al-Muhajir told ISIS followers to attack U.S. and Operation Inherent Resolve coalition forces at in their own countries in his message, titled “For You Will Remember What I Tell You.” The spokesman instructs followers to attack the Turkish military, foreign embassies and economic and media targets across the globe, according to Rita Katz, director of the SITE Intelligence Group.

“We will attack them in their own countries,” said Muhajir in his message. “Your operations make a difference … change the situation. Attack them in their markets, roads, clubs and any unexpected location and burn the ground under their feet.”

Muhajir replaces Abu Mohammad al-Adnani, the former ISIS spokesman who earned a notorious reputation as the group’s voice to the world. ISIS confirmed Adnani’s death Aug. 30. The Pentagon confirmed coalition forces killed Adnani in an air strike Sept. 12. He has since been a revered martyr in the ISIS ranks.

Muhajir’s instructions come as ISIS capitals in Mosul, Iraq and Raqqa, Syria are under siege by Iraqi and Syrian Democratic Forces, respectively. The terrorist group initially encouraged its global followers to travel to the so-called caliphate in Iraq and Syria in order to defend and conquer more territory. ISIS changed its instructions as coalition forces began pushing back in 2014, urging sympathizers to engage in attacks at home. Several ISIS attacks in both the U.S. and Europe followed. Adnani reiterated this point in May.

“Kill the disbeliever whether he is civilian or military, for they have the same ruling,” said Adnani.

Muhajir’s speech resembles that of Adnani, who was the group’s “foremost” inciter of attacks in the West, Katz noted over Twitter, adding that Muhajir’s identity is relatively unknown, and “will likely stay this way to avoid being killed.”

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