For jihadis who wish to plunge us back into the 7th-12th century, they have dangerously embraced the tools of the 21st century to achieve their aim of restoring the Islamic Caliphate.
They have been savvy in jihadi recruitment through Hollywood-inspired propaganda videos and social media (proving to be a double-edged sword– thank you NSA). They are raking in donations through Twitter. They seek to lure young teen girls through Disney-like fairy-tale promises.
ISIS is said to have used chlorine gas against Iraqi security forces last month:
BALAD, Iraq — Dizzy, vomiting and struggling to breathe, 11 Iraqi police officers were rushed to a government hospital 50 miles north of the capital last month. The diagnosis: poisoning by chlorine gas. The perpetrators, according to the officers: Islamic State extremists.
The chlorine attack appears to be the first confirmed use of chemical weapons by the Islamic State on the battlefield. An Iraqi Defense Ministry official corroborated the events, and doctors said survivors’ symptoms were consistent with chlorine poisoning.
Iraqi forces say two other crude chlorine attacks have occurred since the extremists seized vast tracts of Iraqi territory this summer, but details on those incidents remain sketchy. The reported assaults all raise concerns that the militants are attempting to hone their chemical weapons capabilities as they push to control more ground.
What’s next? Oh…
Since the introduction of drone technology to the battlefield, countless academics, policymakers, and military planners have pondered a disturbing question: what happens when other countries or non-state actors have access to them? In Syria, we may be starting to see the effects that the dissemination of drone technology will mean for the future of war.
In late August, ISIS released a 14-minute video of the preparation, planning, and execution of an assault on a Syrian military base in the northern part of the country. The video, entitled in English, “Disperse Those Who are Behind Them,” is like many jihadist propaganda videos: it begins with a long segment of Quranic verses that are meant to justify the attack, shows militants examining a map of the region, and contains gruesome battle scenes, including two beheadings. However, the video is of special note for one reason: ISIS employs a drone for aerial surveillance of the base.
It is certainly a powerful turn of events, wherein jihadist cells in Syria are using readily available and relatively cheap technology that once was strictly the purview of states to level the playing field, conduct intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance operations, and ultimately seize ground and achieve battlefield objectives.
However, the desire to spend precious propaganda time displaying this capability may also suggest something about the place of drone technology in the jihadist mindset and betray a desire to claim for themselves a weapon of war that has stalked them for a decade. It seems clear that militant groups are eager to celebrate their technological prowess both as a weapon of actual war and as a way to establish legitimacy in a propaganda war that has taken on increased importance. The appearance of drones in multiple jihadist propaganda videos would seem to suggest that drones have taken on their own cultural meaning, both here in the United States and abroad, in the wars against terrorism, and that meaning is something that terrorists now intend to trade in too.
Doth the drone wars commeth?
For Islamists with a hatred for modernity and non-Islamic civilization, nothing is more perturbing than seeing them use 21st century technology as a means to achieve their barbaric 7th century ends.
There are those isolationist/non-interventionist blowback voices who tell us to get out of the Middle East; that none of this is our problem; and that our meddling is a big part of creating the problem. That it is the U.S. and the West, along with past colonialism, that are to blame. The CIA, you see, is responsible for creating ISIS, OBL, al Qaeda, and Rumsfeld shook hands with Saddam Hussein. It’s the neocons and the Jewish Lobby; Jews, after all, were responsible for 9/11.
In the absence of all these supposed factors, does one really think that an Islamic Caliphate, once established, wouldn’t stop at the borders edge? That once the Levant were secured, Islamic expansionism wouldn’t continue beyond the water’s edge? They see themselves at war with us.
Is it better and cheaper to treat a metastasizing cancer early on? Or later?
These airstrike pinpricks President Obama has committed us to, are not enough; and too little, too late. Sometimes, the world does need to confront evil, even when not (currently) a direct, imminent threat. We may not have the resources to militarily intervene in all parts of the world where atrocities are being committed. However, is there any doubt that global jihad is not a national and global security threat that needs to be sent back to the stone age?
Some of the recent and latest:
And the most recent news I’ve read: ISIS Captures Man With Down Syndrome, Does The Unthinkable, Uploads To Social Media:
The Inquisitr reports:
The new accusations come by way of Russia Today, which interviewed Bazran Halil, a Kurdish journalist who, with his wife, has been documenting the atrocities of the Islamic State in the Syrian city of Kobani.
ISIS militants have reportedly been wreaking havoc and terrorizing the citizens of Kobani, according to the newest reports. Speaking with Russia Today, Halil said ISIS’ actions in the region go beyond the pale.
“There was a man with Down’s Syndrome,” Halil recounted. “He could not understand the situation to flee or to run away from the frontline. When ISIS arrived, they beheaded him and take his photo and shared them on social media and said, ‘We killed an atheist, a Kaffir.’”
It’s safe to say that the Islamists sentenced the man to death because he could not recite the Shahada, an Islamic creed that declares that Allah is the only god and Muhammad is his prophet, a requirement for Muslims to establish their allegiance and salvation and a prerequisite for converts who wish their lives to be spared.