ISIS has fought a media war as much as it has one of combat, releasing a series of slick recruitment videos and now its fourth issue of a propaganda magazine called Dabiq.
The latest issue, titled The Failed Crusade, takes aim at the crusading foreign governments and opposition groups attacking ISIS, which refers to itself as the Islamic State after the caliphate it declared in Iraq and Syria.
The message in this issue of Dabiq urges Muslims to “get out of his house, find a crusader and kill him.”
This isn’t an unexpected message from the militant group, but there are other disturbing articles and manipulated claims in the 56-page magazine, which appeared online Oct. 12.
ISIS details the “services” it’s providing for Muslims in its self-declared caliphate
The “Window Into the Islamic State” section of Dabiq resembles a campaign flyer circulated during a municipal election — the exception being that ISIS took over its territory in brutally violent campaign that has left thousands dead, rather than giving anyone a choice in having the extremist group rule.
So, according to ISIS, since its expansion rampage through Iraq and Syria went into full swing in June, the Islamic State has provided cancer treatment to children and opened a care home for the elderly. The extremist group also claims to have restored electricity, in some parts, and cleaned up streets.
Their cleaning operations also include destroying centuries-old religious sites and the ethnic cleansing of Shiite Muslims and Yazidi Christians, but that’s presented in a much different way. (See below)
ISIS admits and justifies slavery
An estimated 5,000 Yazidi men were killed in the ISIS massacres in northern Iraq in August.
On top of that, United Nations researchers have verified stories of Yazidi women being sold into slavery.
ISIS justifies the “revival of slavery” and outright glorifies it in the latest Dabiq issue.
“This large-scale enslavement of mushrik (polythesist) families is probably the first since the abandonment of the Shari’ah law. The only other known case — albeit much smaller — is that of the enslavement of Christian women and children in the Philippines and Nigeria by the mujahidin there.”
ISIS taunts families of its victims and hostages, blames governments for their murder
If making hostages condemn their governments for not saving them from beheading, before their impending deaths wasn’t enough, the current edition of Dabiq contains purported letters from murdered U.S. journalist Steven Sotloff and from hostage John Cantlie.
The purported letter from Sotloff to his mother, said to be sent to Shirley Sotloff days before he was beheaded, responds to the public plea she made for ISIS to release him and more or less calls it futile.
“Your recent public video of pleading to the caliphate not to kill me has been received loud and clear by them. However, this in itself is not enough to save me.”
“Mom, please don’t let Obama kill me. Do not let him get away with murder again,” the purported letter continues.
ISIS refers to Sotloff as working for “crusader media including TIME, National Interest, Foreign Policy, the Christian Science Monitor and the Long War Journal.” The article also referred to Sotloff as a “Jew and citizen of the Jewish state” and detailed how measures were taken to conceal his Jewish identity.
A video showing the gruesome murder of Sotloff appeared online on Sept. 2.
Cantlie, who has been forced to become a reporter of sorts in a series of ISIS propaganda videos, also has a (purported) letter in the magazine, detailing his life in captivity.
But the letter also discusses the issue of the U.S. and British governments paying ransoms for hostages, referencing the deal that saw the release of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl in May and the release of British citizen Terry Waite, who was held hostage in Lebanon between 1987 and 1991.