Medford, Ore., police say they don’t believe there’s a reason to fear an attack there after ISIS used footage from a publicly available department training video in a propaganda message calling for attacks by supporters of the Islamic State.
PJM first reported on the video out of ISIS’ Al-Khayr province in Syria, which suggested jihadists emulate the easy-to-acquire weaponry of the Nice, France, truck attack with at-home items such as a power screwdriver, baseball bat or hypodermic needle.
In addition to multiple bits of news footage of 9/11 World Trade Center victims, the nearly 20-minute ISIS video showed American polling places, including at the former Berryville Primary School in Arkansas, along with clips of President Obama and his European counterparts. They also used a short clip that appeared to be either news footage or a city video showing Medford police officers receiving a briefing. Another clip showed a Medford officer lingering near the trunk of a patrol car.
The Medford Police Department posted a statement on their Facebook page about the images in the ISIS video: “From what we can tell, they used some clips of our 2014 recruitment video that we have up on Youtube as well… although ISIS is encouraging terrorist attacks in the video, there is nothing to indicate the attacks are targeted towards us or our area.”
“We mention this because it seems to be catching quite a bit of attention around here, and we don’t want people worried that we are being targeted specifically,” the statement continued. “Thanks for reading.”
ISIS producers have shown fondness for combing through open-source video to pull clips for their films. A June video showed a man preparing for a suicide bombing in Times Square, from strapping on the bomb to picking a target. It appeared to be mock-up footage from an Al-Jazeera segment, with the network’s logo fuzzed out but still discernible.
And a March video posted by ISIS supporters showed the Eiffel Tower exploding and crashing to the ground in stylized, video game animation. It was all ripped from a video game, as betrayed by the name of a video game designer with a U.S. company carved into an animated table in one of the scenes.
The FBI’s Portland field office provided a statement to the Mail-Tribune newspaper in Medford: “The FBI is aware of this video, but we cannot comment on a possible investigative matter. The FBI takes all potential threats seriously and works closely with federal, state and local partners to share information when there is specific, credible information available.”