September 11, 2020 Special Dispatch No. 8929

Editorial In ISIS Weekly Al-Naba: 9/11 Was A Turning-Point In Modern Muslim History, But Al-Qaeda Betrayed The Ultimate Goal Of Establishing The Caliphate

September 11, 2020
Special Dispatch No. 8929

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Ahead of the anniversary of 9/11, ISIS's Al-Naba weekly published an editorial titled "From 9/11 to the Muslim Caliphate,"[1] which described 9/11 as "a tremendous event" which caused great losses to the enemy, but also marked the beginning of the new crusades against Islam and thus caused much harm to the Muslims as well. The editorial criticizes Al-Qaeda for focusing on fighting the U.S. and its allies, while ignoring the Muslims' other enemies, and while betraying the real goal of the ongoing war between Islam and its enemies: the establishment of an Islamic Caliphate acting to exalt the word of Allah. According to the editorial, Al-Qaeda betrayed this goal when it let others reap the fruits of its victories, for example groups like the Muslim Brotherhood (MB), which actually serve their own interests and those of America. ISIS, it stresses, is the only group that has not deviated from the correct path and remains loyal to the cause of true monotheism and the Islamic Caliphate.

The following are translated excerpts from the editorial:

"The blessed 9/11 attacks were a tremendous event and a turning point in modern Muslim history. Their importance lay not in the magnitude of the direct hit on America – although their scope in terms of fatalities and damage was [indeed] great – but in the fact that they marked the beginning of the [new] crusades against the Islamic countries, wars that have been ongoing for two decades in various regions and which, with the help of Allah the Almighty, are soon to come to an end. Everyone realizes that the effects of this long war are felt not only by the crusaders, regardless of the fatalities and economic depletion they have sustained. In the Muslim countries as well, the war has resulted in hundreds of thousands of people dying or being wounded, evicted or taken captive…

"[Some jihad leaders] chose the direction of leading the jihad fighters to target America and its allies until they fell or at least were forced to leave the Muslim lands. These [jihad leaders] were guided by a 'deterministic' approach, out of touch with reality, which caused them to believe that toppling America would [automatically] result in the founding of the Islamic State, as though Islam and the Muslims have no other enemies in the world except for America…

"Many infidel countries and [political] parties used the defeat of America and its allies, who were preoccupied with the war of attrition against them, as an opportunity to increase their influence and strengthen their armies and economies. The tawaghit[2] who govern the Muslim countries took the opportunity to torment [the Muslims] for their support of jihad and the jihad fighters. Many apostate parties took the opportunity to offer their services to the crusaders in [the latter's] war against the monotheists. They offered to fight alongside them in return for their friendship and various other profits… 

"The strange thing is that the leaders of Al-Qaeda let the Muslims fight a war that shed their blood, destroyed their countries and damaged their livelihood and their religion, but then prevented them from enjoying the fruits of this expensive war, and let the tawaghit and the apostates rob them [of its achievements] and erect over the bodies of the monotheists an edifice of polytheism. Some Al-Qaeda leaders believe that this war must continue even if all the monotheists are exterminated, and that it will only end when the crusaders agree to hand over the government in the Muslim countries to the polytheistic democrats, infidels, and the apostate sahawat[3] who call themselves Muslim. Only at then will the war end, [they say, but] whoever continues it after than point is a Khariji[4] whose life, property and honor are forfeit.

"While others deviated from the straight path, Allah the Almighty guided one group of jihad fighters who were determined not to spill their blood and the blood of their brothers for [any goal except ensuring that] all religion be for Allah. They are determined not to focus their fight on the crusaders alone, as some wish to do, but on all the groups of heresy and apostasy, until there is no more fitna [strife] in the world and all religion is for Allah. This incurred the hostility of all the infidel groups, without exception. Those who limited their fight to the crusaders, or to [just] some of the tyrants [i.e., Al-Qaeda], were applauded and encouraged by some groups that regard [Al-Qaeda] as nothing more than an apparatus for clearing landmines on the way to gaining profits or as a shield against the attacks of their enemies."

According to the editorial, Al-Qaeda declared it would not fight the MB governments that rose to power following the Arab Spring in Egypt and Tunisia, and thereby strayed from the right path. This, it says, means that "jihad stops the minute this despicable goal [of Islamist groups rising to power] is attained, and that all the Muslims' sacrifice and jihad is subordinated to this goal and nothing more. These criminals have acted to spread this approach everywhere, while expelling the jihad fighters who oppose it and inciting against them until they become groveling servants who agree to spill their blood for the taghout…"

The editorial concludes: "For all the [true] jihad fighters, the goal of all the wars that have been ongoing since 9/11 is the renewal of the Muslims' caliphate and the Muslims' unity. [This is the goal] for which they have sacrificed everything -- blood, efforts and property – and that is what they wish to preserve today and renew generation after generation, until Allah inherits the earth."


[1]  Al-Naba, Issue 251, September 10, 2020,

[2] Literally false idols, a reference to rulers who govern by manmade law.

[3] Militias in Muslim countries that fight jihadi groups.

[4] The Khawarij were an early Islamic sect that advocated excommunicating Muslims for even minor sins and were proclaimed heretical by mainstream Sunnis. Today the term is used by critics of ISIS to brand them as extremists who are beyond the pale of legitimate Islam.

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