Propaganda Insight

Counter Daesh Insight Bulletin 15-21 Jan 2018

This insight bulletin contains insights and ideas to help communicators undermine the propaganda of Daesh, covering propaganda published between 15 – 21 Jan 2018.

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Overview

Daesh have made some changes in the way they issue their claims; instead of using the trade-mark blue statements that are easily shared via social media, they have started to issue their “provinces’” claims in a shorter version, as plain text.

There has been a rise in the volume of propaganda output from Daesh in the last two weeks and Amaq released a statement in English for the first time since mid-September.

Last week they claimed to have ‘retaken’ areas of Syria. Attacks were also claimed in Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia and Niger. Official propaganda covered the execution of prisoners in Idlib and a photo report of guided-rocket training in Syria.

Other propaganda from pro-Daesh channels included videos threatening the US and Russia and the strict implementation of Sharia law in Idlib.

Video showing deadly military tactics

Daesh’s “al-Anbar Province” issued a 16 minute video, titled “Proxy War”, on the use of “booby-trapped” tunnels as military tactics. The video encourages militants to use this tactic which it claims has been successful in the past. The narrator in the video claims that Daesh’s two most lethal attacks against Iraqi Forces used this tactic. After showing images of attacks they also show TV footage that allegedly shows the confusion within the Iraqi forces after these attacks.

Daesh’s predicts a comeback in Iraq

In the latest issue of Daesh’s weekly propaganda sheet, al-Naba, (January 19), Daesh claims to still have the “upper hand” in Iraq, in an article titled “Baghdad… between the attacks of the pious and the illusion of victory”.They say that their militants now have an advantage because they are more battle-hardened and that, together with the “power struggle” in Bagdad, this will give them the opportunity to win power.

As Daesh has previously claimed, the article states that Iran has taken control over the Iraqi military and security forces via a Shia dominated force and that Iran will now try to seek “full political” control.

Daesh claims a revival in northern Syria

Over the last couple of weeks Daesh has been trying to expand its control on provincial borders in northern Syria and it has taken over some areas from rival groups. Some of these have accused Daesh of having an agreement with government forces.

Last week, Al-Naba published an infographic displaying the results of Daesh operations against government forces in Idlib. It has started to brand its reports with the name of “Idlib Province” likely to exaggerate the  influence it has gained in the region.