Homeland Security

ISIS 'Hints' List: Attack 'Isolated Victim,' Make it Look Like Random Murder

ISIS supporters are encouraging lone jihadists to try methods such as making a terrorist attack look like a random murder or cooking up poisons to use on victims in a new suggestion list.


The “hints” list, posted on Telegram, shows the Eiffel Tower and Big Ben in the background, with blood dripping from the top of the image. It was distributed in Arabic, French and English, with the English translation not clean.

Lone jihadists were urged to have “total emmersion [sp] in the community,” while “choosing easy targets to deal with” in an operation that “must be secret & unseen.”

The list suggests “attacking an isolated victim and make it look like a Homiside [sp].” This method was mentioned in the October 2016 issue of ISIS’ Rumiyah magazine focusing on knife attacks, when terrorists were advised to target someone walking home from a night out or working the night shift, “or someone walking alone in a public park or rural forested area, or someone by himself in an alley close to a night club or another place of debauchery, or even someone out for a walk in a quiet neighborhood.”

Also suggested was “burning markets, churches & factories at night time.” In the January issue of Rumiyah, ISIS claimed a November 2016 fire at a furniture factory in Losino-Petrovsky, Russia. That article included a large photo of the First Baptist Church in Dallas, along with its address and the caption, “A popular Crusader gathering place waiting to be burned down.” Jihadists were advised to time their arson “preferably in the later part of night to the early hours of morning when people are generally asleep.”


The “hints” list continues to suggest “putting iron pieces in the railroads to take the train off course” (a train derailment tool that’s essentially a concrete and rebar track clamp was detailed by al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula in the August issue of Inspire magazine) or “making lethal poisons from the available materials.” An official ISIS guide distributed in November 2016 advised jihadists to explore the wide range of toxic plants that are “accessible to everyone.”

Finally, jihadists were encouraged to try “taking the ennemy’s [sp] money” — again, a suggestion with Rumiyah roots, when ISIS told followers to steal and send the caliphate 20 percent of the loot.

Islamic State supporters have been issuing myriad holiday threats, including a poster last week showing the National Cathedral in Washington in flames, with a camouflage-clad jihadist wielding a rifle standing in front of the Gothic structure.

The threat mirrored that on a poster of Santa with a case of dynamite overlooking Times Square, which was released just after Thanksgiving: “We meet at Christmas in New York… soon,” reads the text on that image.


The other U.S. house of worship targeted by ISIS supporters’ posters this holiday season has been the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Temple in San Diego, with the text “coming soon.”

The ISIS-supporting Wafa’ Media Foundation has released numerous threats against the holiday and against the Vatican. In a recent message to fellow jihadists, the group noted that “the crusaders’ feast is approaching.”

In another instance, Wafa’ circulated a poster depicting a vehicle moving toward the Vatican with a cache of weapons, vowing “Christmas blood.”

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