Pro-ISIS Media Outlets Urge Palestinians To Reject Nationalism And Wage Uncompromising Jihad Against "Jews"

May 10, 2021

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In recent weeks, tensions have been high between Palestinians and Israelis in Jerusalem, due to a confluence of factors, including the month of Ramadan; the Iran-sponsored Qods Day (May 7); Israel's Jerusalem Day (May 10); the planned eviction of Arab families from the predominantly Arab neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah near Jerusalem's Old City; and a new phenomenon of young Arabs posting TikTok videos showing assaults on Jews. Clashes between Palestinians and Israeli security forces, mostly in the Al-Aqsa Mosque area but also in other locations in Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza, resulted in the injury of hundreds of Palestinians and dozens of Israeli police officers, and in the arrest of dozens of Palestinians. Muslims worldwide, including jihadis, have condemned Israel for its perceived excesses. Many of the jihadis praised the "jihad" in Jerusalem, encouraged Palestinians to intensify their violence and expressed a hope for a Muslim victory over the "Jews."[1]

Among the jihadis expressing these sentiments were Islamic State (ISIS) supporters, who framed the violence as jihad waged by the Muslims against the Jews. Beginning on May 7, 2021, several pro-ISIS Telegram channels posted calls for attacks on Israelis and Jews, under hashtags like #Hunt_them_O_Muwahid (Monotheist) and #SlaughteringTheJews.[2] Other pro-ISIS channels posted links to archival ISIS videos threatening Israel and Jews,[3] and urged their supporters to spread the videos and links under the trending hashtag #PalestineIsMyCause. Under the same hashtag, some channels posted a compilation of segments from official ISIS videos declaring that ISIS is at war with Israel and the Jews and urging Muslims to kill Jews.[4]

May 8 Telegram posts by pro-ISIS Sawt Al-Zarqawi channel encourage "lone wolf" stabbing attacks, under the hashtags #SlaughteringTheJews and #Hunt_them_O_Muwahid

May 9 Telegram posts by pro-ISIS Naqel Nasher bot contain links to two 2015 anti-Israel ISIS videos titled "Breaking the Borders and Slaughtering the Jews" and "A Message to Our People in Jerusalem"

As part of this media activity, the pro-ISIS Al-Battar Foundation released on May 9 a poster titled "O People of Palestine, This Is the Only Solution", urging Palestinians to reject nationalism and democracy and wage uncompromising jihad against the Jews, asserting that this is the only way for the Palestinians to defeat Israel.[5] At the top of the poster is a compilation of images, including the Dome of the Rock; scenes of Israeli soldiers arresting Palestinians, with bullseyes drawn on the figures of the soldiers; Palestinian protesters throwing rocks; Palestinian Authority head Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh; and armed ISIS fighters standing guard and reciting from the Quran.

Poster by pro-ISIS Al-Battar Foundation urges Palestinians to reject nationalism and wage uncompromising jihad against Israel

The text beneath the images states that the "filthy Jews" expel Muslims from their homes, and that they dare to do this only because "the Muslims of Palestine have relished the weakness represented by nationalism, patriotic zeal, and all forms of jahiliyah [ideologies reminiscent of pre-Islamic paganism]." It adds that "nothing will deter the Jews but the method of the Prophet, namely jihad for the sake of Allah," explaining that, if any method of nonviolent struggle were effective, Allah would not have commanded Muhammad to endanger his life through armed struggle against his enemies.

The Al-Battar poster stresses that the fight with the Jews is a clash of religions, not nationalities: "The Jews fight you for the sake of their religion and do not recognize nationalism, with which they bewitch your minds."  Discrediting Palestinian movements such as the PLO and Hamas, it warns the Palestinians not to rely on any group that "does not make waging jihad for the sake of Allah its evident, ongoing method." Such groups, it says, pose no real threat to Israel, otherwise Israel would have fought them "and the war would not have subsided until one of the two sides was destroyed." These groups only "traffic in your blood, possessions, and honor, and do not care what happens to you as long as their worldly interests are secure," it says. It emphasizes that all armed groups are fighting either for Allah or for Satan, implying that the Palestinian groups fall into the second category.

The poster urges Palestinian Muslims to follow the Quran's directive to fight the infidels until they submit: "Fight those who were given the Scripture who do not believe in Allah, nor in the Last Day, who do not prohibit what Allah and His Messenger have prohibited, and who not follow the true religion, until they pay the jizyah willingly while they are humbled" (Quran 9:29). This, it says, is "the only solution in the case of the Jews." Finally, it reassures Palestinians that "there are still people of piety and zeal among you who will change the situation – Allah willing – to what He likes and pleases Him."


[2] W.A. Bariqah, May 7, 2021; Sawt Al-Zarqawi, May 8, 2021;, May 8, 2021.

[4] Nasaer1442bot, May 9, 2021; kawasir_bot, May 9, 2021.

[5] Al-Battar, May 9, 2021.

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