The following are some of this week's reports from the MEMRI Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM) Project, which translates and analyzes content from sources monitored around the clock – among them the most important jihadi websites and blogs. (To view these reports in full, you must be a paying member of the JTTM; for membership information, send an email to [email protected] with "Membership" in the subject line.)
Note to media and government: For a full copy of these reports, send an email with the title of the report in the subject line to [email protected]. Please include your name, title, and organization in your email.
Following are excerpts from an appeal by Emir Saladin, a Jihadist volunteering in Syria, to the Muslims in the "Caucasus Emirate." The video was posted on the Internet on July 31, 2013.
Emir Saladin: "If you cannot wage Jihad in the mountains, wage it in the plains, but if, for some reason, you cannot do that either, then go to Moscow, to that hornet's nest of heresy, and wage Jihad there.
"You can choose any city in Russia you see fit, not only Moscow. Ultimately, you should prepare for the [winter] Olympics in Sochi. There are concrete instructions from our Emir Dokka Abu Uthman to do so."
The Syrian-based Saudi preacher 'Abdallah Al-Muhaisani tweeted on his Twitter account on December 22 and noted that many Saudis studying abroad on scholarship approached him inquiring how to reach Syria for the fighting. Al-Muhaisani asked the applicants to be patient, and wrote that soon an office would be opened to coordinate arrival in Syria for students studying abroad and this would make things easier for the applicants.
On December 26, 2013, a video showing a group of Muslim protestors somewhere in the Netherlands was posted on to YouTube and the Shumoukh Al-Islam forum. The video was titled "Supporters of the Islamic State [of Iraq and Al-Sham, ISIS] in Holland," and it featured a group of Muslim, who held a street protest somewhere in the Netherlands, where they raised Al-Qaeda's black banners, a sign condemning democracy, and issued calls in support of ISIS, Jabhat Al-Nusra (JN), and their leaders, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi and Abu Muhammad Al-Joulani, respectively.
Using several Facebook accounts and internet forums, jihadi groups have announced a Question & Answer session with German jihadi fighters based in Waziristan, the Taliban and Al-Qaeda stronghold in the Pakistani tribal region.
On December 20, the Facebook account posted a message in Urdu and English: "We are getting ready for Q&A session/interview with German brothers [i.e. fighters] in Waziristan. If you have any question please send your questions in inbox." As of December 23, this jihadi account on Facebook is followed by 2,312 people.
"Abu Layth Al-Khorasani," who began tweeting in June 2013, is, according to his tweets, a Salafi of Khorasani (Afghan) origin who grew up in the U.K. His early tweets focused mainly on Islamic da'wa and the preaching of Salafi values. He also appears to have been in Afghanistan during Ramadan (July-August) 2013.
In October 2013, Abu Layth travelled to Syria with two or more other jihadis, presumably from the U.K.; this was determined by accounts by one of the jihadis he travelled with – Abu Qa'qaa' (for Abu Qa'qaa's account, see MEMRI Special Dispatch No. 5529, On Tumblr, British Member Of ISIS Who Recently Arrived In Syria Opens Q&A Session With Readers, Explains How He Reached His Destination, Quotes Bin Laden And Al-Awlaki, Speaks About His Jihadi Companions, November 20, 2013). As of this writing, Abu Layth has posted 1,005 Tweets and has 829 followers.
Abu Layth is one of many Western jihadis in Syria who are using Twitter and other social media to share their experiences.
The following are tweets by Abu Layth following his arrival in Syria:
"Praise To Allah For Providing Us With A Teacher Back In The West That Pushed Us To The Correct Aqeedah"
On October 26, Abu Layth tweeted: "All praise be to Allah for making easy our route to this blessed land of izza!" and "All praise be to Allah for providing us with a teacher back in the west that pushed us to the correct aqeedah."
Jihadi activists on Twitter recently launched a coordinated "spam" attack campaign designed to shut down anti-jihad Twitter accounts. The campaign is coordinated by an account called Jaish Al-Ansar. The campaign's administrators post links to other accounts that “defame the mujahideen” and ask jihad supporters to help shut them down. The technique is simple: jihad supporters are asked to file a complaint against a targeted account using Twitter’s “report ___ for spam” option.
Following are excerpts from an address by AQAP Military Commander Qassem Al-Rimi, which was posted on the Internet on December 21, 2013.
Qassem Al-Rimi: "We all saw what Yemen TV broadcast: a gunman entering a hospital belonging to the Defense Ministry, and doing what he did there.
"We say what the Prophet Muhammad said about Khaled [Ibn Al-Walid], when the latter wrongfully killed 70 people. The Prophet Muhammad said: "Oh Allah, I absolve myself of responsibility for what Khaled did," and we say: Allah, we absolve ourselves of responsibility for what our brother did."
On December 27, 2013, the Egyptian daily Al-Youm Al-Sabi' reported that Sheikh Tariq 'Abd Al-Halim, Secretary General of Al-Tayyar Al-Sunni, called upon Egyptian Muslims to bear arms in order to confront the various state institutions, including the police and military.
Tariq 'Abd Al-Halim
On December 23, 2013, Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) announced that the Algerian Salafi-jihadi group Jama'at Humat Al-Da'wa Al-Salafiyya, which is better known by its acronym HDS, has joined its ranks.
The announcement, which was posted on jihadi forums, said that the HDS decided to join AQIM in order to unite the (jihadi) groups in the Maghreb under one group. AQIM further reminded the mujahideen and their supporters in the Islamic Maghreb and elsewhere of the importance of uniting, and putting aside any disagreements in order to achieve victory.
On December 17, the website Fisyria posted the second part of the series titled "'Omar Al-Shishani and Abu Jihad on the Latest Developments in Syria." In this part, ISIS commanders 'Omar Al-Shishani and Abu Jihad answer questions on their joining ISIS and on the division of war booty among the mujahideen.
'Omar Al-Shishani (left) and Abu Jihad
On December 3 the jihadi website Vdagestan.com posted a video titled "Instructions for the Sisters from the Qadi of the Dagestan Emirate, Abu Othman." In it, the qadi advises women not to step out of their homes under the pretext of participating in jihad, and enumerates the conditions under which a woman may leave the house.
Taliban fighters travelling by cars and vans
The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the Taliban's shadow government) has released a video showing Taliban fighters targeting Afghan and NATO-led troops in the restive eastern Kunar and Nangarhar provinces of Afghanistan, bordering Pakistan.
On December 22, 2013, a jihadi named Abu Mujahid Al-Emarati started a course in hacking Android-based OS machines on the Shumoukh Al-Islam forum. Al-Emarati said the course will have no end date, and will conclude only when all related topics have been covered.
On December 22, 2013, a Shumoukh Al-Islam forum member named Yousef Ishaq posted a link to the dronesurvivalguide.org website, which contains a guide for recognizing the different types of drones, and avoiding their detection.
On December 19, 2013, the news website eldorar.com reported that three aircraft belonging to the Syrian military were shot down at various locations in Syria during that same day.
The website reported that a Syrian army helicopter was shot down by "Syrian rebel brigades" using ground anti-aircraft weapons. The helicopter was shot over the town of Kufur Zeita in Hama's governorate.