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PR Stunt: ISIS Vows Attacks Against Israel

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PR Stunt: ISIS Vows Attacks Against Israel

ILLUSTRATIVE

On January 27, ISIS released an official audio message claiming that the terrorist group will launch attacks with the focus on Israel.

The message was released by the group’s al-Furqan media.

“He and his brothers in all states have vowed to begin a new phase, which is to fight the Jews and restore all that they have usurped from Muslims,” the ISIS spokesman said about Abu Hamza al-Qurayshi (the current leader of the group).

The message called on the “soldiers of the caliphate” especially in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula and across the Levant to attack Israeli targets.

“To Muslims and Palestine and elsewhere, be a main force in fighting Jews and frustrating their plans such as the Deal of the Century,” the message said.

On top of this, the terrorist group called to ‘cut ties’ with Hamas because of its links with Iran and positive attitude towards the figure of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani (assassinated by the US on January 3). Besides general wording threats, the terrorist group proposes to use rockets with chemical weapons to shell Israel and calls on the Palestinians to launch a terror campaign against the Israeli population. The message also includes threats against all states that have ties with Israel.

The terrorist group’s spokesperson emphasizes that ISIS still exists and continues expanding around the world. A part of the message is addressed to the ISIS branch in Afghanistan, where the terrorist group is facing significant difficulties. (The main reason of this is active actions of the Taliban that fiercely fights against the ISIS presence.)

ISIS made the announcement as the US administration prepares to unveil its ‘peace plan’ for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The Palestinians have not been consulted on the much-trumpeted “Deal of the Century” and have preemptively rejected it. The Palestinian side reasonably says that the plan will be biased towards Israel.

The ISIS call to attack Israel comes at a time when the terrorist group has suffered major defeats and its self-proclaimed ‘Caliphate’ has collapsed. Despite carrying out deadly attacks throughout the world over the past years, ISIS has never attacked Israel. For years, the terrorist group controlled a large chunk of territory near the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights in Syria. Nonetheless, the group did not use this foothold to attack Israeli forces. In fact, it was a useful tool of Israel and the United States in their joint efforts to overthrow the Assad government and keep Syria in chaos.

The real ISIS ideology has never included a real antagonism toward Israel, the ‘liberation of Jerusalem’ or fight for Palestine. The new statement is just a PR stunt designed to paint ISIS as the ‘force fighting Israel’. The reality is that it is not. If the group really wanted to act in this direction, it had more than enoguh chances to do so. The January 27 message with threats against Israel is an attempt of the declining group to gain more supporters using anti-Israeli rhetoric.

A contrary example is Iran. Regardless points of view, the Islamic Republic has been providing a consistent policy of fighting the Zionism and supporting Palestine. Iran has repeatedly vowed to liberate Jerusalem. This position turned Iran into an attractive ally for any force fighting Israel’s hostile policies and supporting Palestine.

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