The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is hoping to recruit Muslims from across the globe with the aid of YouTube appeals from English-speaking jihadists. UK, Australian nationals are among the ISIS militants calling to support the insurgency in Iraq.
Titled “There Is No Life Without Jihad,” the new propaganda clip uploaded to YouTube by ISIS’s AlHayat Media Center allegedly shows a line-up of militants who came to Syria and later to Iraq from all over the world.
“We have brothers from Bangladesh, from Iraq, from Cambodia,
Australia and the UK,” says a militant called Abu Muthanna
al-Yemeni, who himself comes from Britain, according to a video
The man attempts to persuade other Muslims to “answer the call of Allah and his messenger when he calls you to what gives you life” and join the jihad – apparently interpreting the term as armed insurgency aimed at creating an Islamic state based on Sharia law.
The militant cites the Prophet Mohammed saying that “the land of Sham [Syria] is the best of lands,” and that, according to him, explains why so many “muhajedeen” are fighting for control of the region. Referring to ISIS, he says: “I don’t know anybody else that has as many muhajedeen as we do.”
“Look at the soldiers – we understand no borders… We have participated in battles in Sham, and we will go to Iraq in a few days, and we will fight there, Allah permitting, and come back, and we will even go to Jordan and Lebanon with no problems,” the ISIS militant says.
Another English-speaker, identified as Abu Bara’ al-Hindi from
Britain, claims that by reading the Koran everyone could
understand the nature of jihad just the way he did, calling the
insurgency Allah’s “test to see how much you’re willing to
sacrifice…the fat job you’ve got, the big car you’ve got and the
family you have… for the sake of Allah.”
He also explains his other motives for joining the ruthless terror group.
“You know, my brothers living in the West, I know how you feel when I used to live there, in the heart you feel depressed,” the bearded “British national” says, claiming that the “cure for the depression” is militant jihad. He said that back in the UK, he felt like he had “no honor.”
The video also shows a militant called Abu Yahya ash Shami, allegedly from Australia. The caption says that he has already “received shahadah” – that is, was killed – fighting in Al-Khayr.
Another Australian jihadist, Abu Nour al-Iraqi, calls on
Americans, Australians and Europeans to join the fighting in
Syria and Iraq, saying that the reasons for that are
“plenty,” with key one being the creation of a religious
state ISIS wants to establish in the region.
ISIS, also known as ISIL, which rose to power in the wake of the US-led 2003 invasion of Iraq, has become known for fighting alongside the West-backed rebels in Syria and for its gruesome atrocities that even the international terror group Al-Qaeda now holds too radical.
In its latest major offensive in Iraq, ISIS has captured several
large northern and central cities and increased its presence in
the Iraqi provinces, closing in on the capital, Baghdad. The
seizing of Iraqi territories has taken place extremely rapidly,
aided by support from locals who hate the post-invasion
government and by the low morale and poor coordination in the
US-equipped Iraqi army.
ISIS includes thousands of foreign fighters and has been attracting many jihadist volunteers from Europe and North Africa, Western intelligence agencies reported, according to Reuters. It is also believed to have major foreign sponsors, including some from the Gulf countries and Indonesia, and has even issued a glossy PR report claiming to be showing statistics of various types of attacks for its “stakeholders.”