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July 11, 2014 0

ISIS Weighs In On Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

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Al-Battar Media tweet threat­ens: “Patience, Jews, our appoint­ment is at al-Quds [Jerusalem] tomor­row, for the one who waits is close.”

As the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS, an Al Qaeda inspired ter­ror­ist orga­ni­za­tion seek­ing to cre­ate an Islamic empire) gains con­fi­dence, ter­ri­tory and expands its exten­sive online pres­ence, the ter­ror­ist group (and its sup­port­ers) are increas­ingly mak­ing threats against Israel in response to the ongo­ing conflict.

One of ISIS’ sev­eral media wings, Al-Battar Media, tweeted a series of graph­ics threat­en­ing Israel. One graphic posted July 9 shows storm clouds over Jerusalem with a warn­ing: “Patience, Jews, our appoint­ment is at al-Quds [Jerusalem] tomor­row, for the one who waits is close.” Another image posted the same day shows the Dome of the Rock mosque super­im­posed in front of mil­i­tants and fea­tures the same language. 

ISIS’ Dawla Media Twit­ter feed, which reg­u­larly posts ISIS pro­pa­ganda mate­ri­als, tweeted a quoteon July 8 pur­port­edly from a Hamas spokesman say­ing, “All our mil­i­tary oper­a­tions till now are just [a] mes­sage for Israel.”

Dawla Media has also tweeted a state­menton July 9 indi­cat­ing that ISIS must fight the sur­round­ing Arab states before it can attack Israel “because they are the pro­tec­tive fence sup­port­ing the Jews.”

Other state­ments have been tweeted from a feed asso­ci­ated with the pro-ISIS extrem­ist forum “Al-Platform Media,” which has been tweet­ing state­ments by forum users. For exam­ple, one tweet from July linked to a con­ver­sa­tion on the forum pro­claim­ing, “Allah’s curse upon those of you who have made filth on the holy places. Zion­ist dogs…I would cru­cify you.”

ISIS’s online sup­port­ers are also tweet­ing their own threats. One sup­porter wrote that the kid­nap­pings and deaths of the three Israeli teenagers Naf­tali Fraenkel, Gilad Shaar and Eyal Yifrach would be the first of many such attacks. And at least one sup­porter posted the anti-Semitic “Khay­bar” slo­gan evok­ing the story of slay­ing thou­sands of Jews from the tribe of Khaiber in Ara­bia 1400 years ago. The slo­gan has been retweeted and favor­ited by many ISIS supporters.

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ISIS map that reads, “We fight in Lev­an­tine and our eyes are ded­i­cated towards beit al Maqdis [Jerusalem]”

ISIS pro­pa­ganda tar­get­ing Israel is not with­out prece­dent. Even before the cur­rent con­flict, maps dis­trib­uted online by ISIS demon­strat­ing its ter­ri­to­r­ial ambi­tions reg­u­larly included Israel as part of the Islamic State. A map released by ISIS in March claimed that the orga­ni­za­tion held ter­ri­tory 220km away from Israel and threat­ened rocket attacks, say­ing, “We fight in the Lev­an­tine and our eyes are toward Jerusalem.”

A video released by ISIS last month before the cur­rent con­flict included threats against Jews and Chris­tians to rally its mil­i­tants. The video includes explicit anti-Jewish state­ments, includ­ing “Wher­ever our war goes, Jew­ish rab­bis are humiliated.”

ISIS has a long his­tory of threat­en­ing Israel. As early as 2005, the organization’s pre­de­ces­sor, Al Qaeda in Iraq, claimed at least 2 rocket attacks against Israel. In 2008, the organization’s leader Abu Omar al-Baghdadi issued an audio state­ment call­ing for attacks on Israel and propos­ing to use Iraq as a “launch­ing pad” for mis­sile attacks against Israel.

ISIS has become well known for its sophis­ti­cated use of social media, where it dis­sem­i­nates pro­pa­ganda, threat­ens west­ern nations and enables sup­port­ers to take part in that process.

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July 8, 2014 5

Reflections from ADL’s Jerusalem Office

By: Phyl­lis Ger­ably, Direc­tor, ADL Israel Office

I’m writ­ing these words as sirens are heard all around the coun­try. The rock­ets that Hamas just sent fell very close to my apart­ment in Jerusalem.

For the last few weeks, as ten­sions have grown, it’s very hard not to look at the pic­tures of the five young peo­ple who were mur­dered out of fanatic hate.  The com­mon denom­i­na­tor, their youth, makes it all the more shock­ing.  The coun­try seems to have had a wake-up call of how frag­ile our life is here.  Com­mu­nity lead­ers have called for restraint, but it seems that no one can embrace the dig­nity and com­pas­sion of Rachel Fraenkel, the mother of Naf­tali (of blessed mem­ory), who said when speak­ing of the mur­dered Arab youth, Mohammed Abu Khdeir,  “There is no dif­fer­ence between blood and blood.”

IronDome246We’ve barely had a chance to mourn the loss of the young peo­ple and rock­ets are being fired at sev­eral cities in Israel.  Pic­tures come to mind:  the bride in Ash­dod who wasn’t sure that her wed­ding would take place tomor­row; efforts to take the chil­dren from Sderot to the North for a respite; the call today from Car­ole, our col­league and friend who, on her way back from a con­fer­ence, had to leave her car as the siren was heard; and scenes from “the safe cen­ter” of Tel Aviv whose res­i­dents today expe­ri­enced what cit­i­zens of Sderot have been going through for years.

My grand­son didn’t sleep last night. He keeps cry­ing and ask­ing his mother if the house will be strong enough if a bomb falls. He is only five years old.

Address­ing a recent ADL mis­sion to Israel, Udi Segal, a jour­nal­ist and com­men­ta­tor for Israel Chan­nel 2, shared what the Israelis really want:  “Israelis just want quiet” he said, “with us here and the Pales­tini­ans there.”  Just quiet.

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