Al-Qaeda Editorial Offers In-Depth Analysis Of US Political Landscape In Wake Of Presidential Election, Civil Unrest, 'Cancel Culture,' And 'Biased Liberal Media'; Concludes: Polarization In US Paves Way For Civil War

April 20, 2021

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On April 14, 2021, Al-Qaeda's central media wing, Al-Sahab, released the fifth issue of its Ummah Wahidah (One Ummah) magazine in Arabic.[1] The new issue included an editorial titled "America Burns." It is an updated and expanded version of an editorial originally published in the second issue of the English-language version of the magazine, which focused on the social and economic situation in the U.S.[2]

The new editorial argued that the U.S. is on the verge of collapse, citing several factors, including the  coronavirus pandemic and its impact on the U.S. economy. Another factor discussed in the editorial was what it described as the division and polarization of American society, which it attributed to the recent U.S. presidential elections and the storming of the Capitol building by rioters in January 2021.

Text in image: "America Is Burning."

Interestingly, in assessing recent events in the U.S., the author demonstrated detailed knowledge of the unfolding of recent events and the roles of U.S. decision-makers, whether in the White House, Congress, or Senate. 

The editorial read: "Let us not forget the sharp divisions and the deep, growing fissures appearing at all levels, from [country's] leadership to its base. Adding to that division is a president [Biden] who began his term by adding flame to the fire and calling for the impeachment of a president [Trump] who is supported by 70 million American voters, in addition to the Gulf rulers, who came to unify American ranks. [President Biden] claimed that [Former President] Trump is the reason for these divisions, when the truth is that Trump and his victory in the previous election are symptoms of divisions from which America has been suffering for decades."

The author accused the Democrats of exacerbating the crisis throughout President Trump's term, in order to keep their voters motivated and ensure a win the midterm and later the presidential elections. The editorial accused several prominent figures of collaborating with the FBI in accusing President Trump of spying for Russia, including Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, and Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., Chairman of the House Committee On Intelligence.

The author then sharply criticized the U.S. media, saying that it showed "disgusting" bias in its coverage of political events, favoring the Democrats. He added that the media purposefully ignored "scandals" by Democrats, such as New York Governor Andrew Cuomo's role in the alleged misreporting of the number of fatalities among seniors diagnosed with COVID-19 and the allegations of sexual harassment made against him. He wrote: "Just imagine with me, if Trump or one of his family members were involved, what the coverage would be like! This is not in defense of the criminal Trump, but so that everyone knows that American politicians and their media, Republican or Democrat, care about nothing other than their influence and interests, letting all principles and ethics go to Hell."

Moving on the storming of the Capitol building in Washington DC on January 6, the editorial offered an analysis of the events and their implications, pointing out that the "liberal media" had launched a campaign against then-President Trump, saying he "instigated the terrorists." The author mocked the Democrats, saying that in their attempts to attack Trump, they described his actions as similar to those of Daesh (the Islamic State, ISIS). He further joked that the "liberal media" in the U.S. should learn from Arabic Networks such as Al-Jazeera and Al-Arabyia, which he described as "experts in distorting the image of terrorists and turning them into devils."

Text on the photo reads: "Harris-Biden Supporters."

The editorial stated that the events of January 6 exposed the fragility of the U.S. democratic system. " A few thousand demonstrators could have overthrown the largest fortress of democracy in the world," it said.

The author cited the 9/11 terrorist attacks, saying that a fourth plane was supposed to target the U.S. Congress, but did not reach its destination. He thanked Allah that it did not, adding that it is better to see the Americans destroy this icon of democracy with their own hands, which, he said, almost happened during the Capitol riot.

Discussing the implications of the riot, the author claimed that personal weapons are in high demand among Americans, adding that this is another indication that civil war in the U.S. is looming. He quoted President Biden's inauguration address, saying an "uncivil war" is taking place.

The editorial also cited the killing of George Floyd as an example of the spread of racism and white supremacy in the U.S., noting that the incident triggered a series of events involving curfews, vandalism, and violence, which required the "presence of the army in the streets." The author further noted that by contrast, the "White people" are now feeling marginalized in the U.S., and accordingly, Republicans are complaining about what they perceive as "cancel culture." This feeling of marginalization, he said, has paved the way for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to restore Former President Trump in the eyes of the Republicans, adding that Trump's fundraising initiative, dubbed Save America, marks the beginning of a "war of liberation from evil liberals and pro-Biden invaders [immigrants] who are crossing the border from Mexico after Trump's wall was stopped by Biden."

The author concluded the piece by mentioning the ban imposed on President Trump's social media accounts following the January 6 riot, saying: "maybe President Trump's supporters can learn some useful lessons from the jihadis, who have experience finding ways around account suspensions."


[1], April 14, 2021; the fourth, Arabic-language, issue of the magazine was published on May 22, 2020. For more information see MEMRI JTTM Report: New Issue Of Al-Qaeda Magazine Celebrates Pensacola Shooting; Calls To Kill American Citizens And Targets American, Western And Israeli Interests Worldwide, May 25, 2020.

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