ISIS calls for ‘social media war’ to counter ‘enchanting’ influencers and incite them

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A concerted focus on “social media warfare” is key to advancing on the ideological battlefield but also countering the pull of “enchanting” social media influencers, ISIS Khorasan says in a new issue of the group’s English-language magazine. .

“War comes in many forms and targets different aspects of human beings. A war can be fought militarily by targeting the physical self or it can be fought ideologically by targeting the intellect,” said an article in the third issue of Voice of Khurasan magazine published online. “As much as physical confrontations are important, ideological confrontations also count, if not more. The physical battle can be lost before it even begins if the people, in our case the Muslims, are defeated or at least trapped in the battle for hearts and minds.

“The Western Crusaders understood the importance of the battle for hearts and minds, and hastened to prepare to advance for the confrontation on this front by opening their research centers, colleges and other forms of institutions. They have funded thousands of people in the name of research for this and bought off people who wear Muslim capes,” the article continues. “Think tanks such as ‘RAND Corporation’ have written about this over ten years ago in outlining a framework that Crusader America should follow, which groups they should target to work hand in hand toward this intellectual crusade.”

Islamic State said the goal of the West’s “ideological battle is to try to counter the true Islamic ideology that the Crusaders claim as ‘radical and dogmatic interpretations of Islam’, and to ensure that the sons of Islam follow the vapid version of Islam which is against jihad”. , the full implementation of Sharia and its religious punishments. »

“Jihad against the Crusaders and their allies is the best way to deter them. Jihad is not limited to physical combat, and combat with languages ​​is as important as physical combat,” ISIS said. “At this time, social media warfare is of utmost importance because media and social media personalities delight people’s eyes. Fights in this field must be fought in order to incite believers and save fellow Muslims of the negative impact of the enchanting battle for hearts and minds.

Voice of Khurasan has so far been on a monthly schedule, with the inaugural 37-page issue published in February, a 35-page issue published in March, and the current 20-page April issue.

In the first issue, the group said it was ISIS’s “most important province” after Iraq and Syria. The magazine continued ISIS’s longstanding narrative that the group’s loss of the caliphate claimed in Iraq and Syria is “temporary”, adding that “although we have lost Khilafah territory and thousands mujahideen have been martyred over a period of 5 years, there is no problem.”

The Islamic State told the Taliban in the article that they would “become our brother” if they “renounce your deeds, declare themselves free from the infidel democratic system, free your neck from the slavery of the infidels and the ISI, repent of infidel beliefs, innovations and other superstitions”, release prisoners and “recognize the sovereignty of one God”.

The magazine said that “even though our territories have been taken away from us”, the Islamic State is still “engaged” in jihad because “we are East Africa, West Africa, the Central Africa, Libya, Sinai and other countries, including the Philippines, are changing very quickly.” and our numbers and strength are increasing day by day.

The second issue also devoted considerable space to criticism of the Taliban and asserted that “to date, no entity, no person has ever…presented a legitimate argument against the beliefs of the Khalifah” while denouncing the “pure stupidity” of the leaders of al-Qaeda. . The magazine also touched on Syria’s Hayʼat Tahrir al-Sham merger and a frequent target of ISIS’s wrath, HTS leader Abu Mohammad al-Jolani, saying he “cut his group off from Al -Qaeda, renamed his group as he changes underpants in an attempt to escape the terrorism label.

Supporters of Islamic State in the United States are invited to join “ISIS North America”

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