Counter Daesh Insight Bulletin 14 – 20 May
Amaq claimed attacks in Pakistan, Somalia, Philippines and Indonesia. In al-Naba, an infographic claimed 40 attacks in Iraq on the day of the elections, likely a considerable exaggeration. Daesh released a statement on its defence of its positions in Yarmouk, claiming to be steadfast in its resistance. From Yemen, came a violent video calling for new recruits to join the war.
Output from unofficial Daesh brands included an infographic with advice for carrying out low-tech attacks on civilians in public places. Further threats on the World Cup, with one graphic portraying the FIFA president as a Daesh captive. An audio with threats to India from a Kashmiri pro-Daesh group. An Indonesian group released the 10th issue of a pro-Daesh magazine, mostly carrying translations from al-Naba. A group calling itself Muhajireen Foundation launched a pro-Daesh website in several languages, with content mainly aimed at Daesh fighters urging them not to defect.
End of the battle for Yarmouk?
Daesh Amaq issued a statement on 18 May, claiming that in the battle with the Syrian regime it has killed over 900 Syrian soldiers and is continuing to fight. It contrasts Daesh with other opposition groups, which it said, had ‘handed over their positions’. In contrast, media reported on 20 May the arrival of buses to evacuate Daesh fighters and families from the destroyed refugee camp, suggesting a deal had been made with the Regime.
Recruitment video from Yemen
A 23 minute video branded as from ‘al-Bayda province’ in Yemen was released on 16 May, calling for more recruits. It features various fighters making the argument that territorial losses are part of God’s ultimate plan and a test for believers – not a reason to give up hope. This reflects the narrative of core Daesh channels. Claims are made that God will reward those who join Daesh and punish those who do not. Various scenes of violence end with a fighter in a wheelchair shooting a captive to death. Portraying disabled fighters is a tactic that has been used in previous Daesh videos, likely in an attempt to shame able bodied men into action.
See previous editions of the insight bulletin here.