ISIS Magazine for Millennials Threatens Vehicle Attacks Near U.S. Capitol
Declaring that ISIS is a "globalist" organization, a new magazine geared toward young recruits is calling on jihadists to wage vehicle attacks outside of the U.S. Capitol.
Shabab al-Khilafah, or The Youth of the Caliphate, debuted its first issue on Oct. 10 as a colorful collection of articles, posters and teasers to online videos encouraging home-turf attacks on behalf of the Islamic State. Supporters were encouraged to submit content for future issues.
That debut issue, which was distributed via online file-sharing sites, called for lone-jihadist attacks in Australia. On Nov. 9, Hassan Khalif Shire Ali rammed his car filled with propane canisters into a sidewalk in Melbourne's central business district, got out and stabbed three people, killing one before being shot by police.
The Youth of the Caliphate isn't an official publication, but is produced by multiple ISIS-supporting media groups under the leadership of groups including Ashhad Media, which has been recruiting online jihadists in English, Arabic and French, and Al-Abd Al-Faqir, which produces frequent online threat images and videos. These independent media organizations form a growing online support network that creates and disseminates propaganda for recruitment and incitement on behalf of the terror group, with the goal of widening the geographical scope of attacks and ISIS influence.
This onslaught of continuously fresh propaganda has figured into other cases of lone jihad. Everitt Aaron Jameson of Modesto, Calif., pleaded guilty this summer to plotting a Christmas 2017 attack at Pier 39, a popular tourist spot in San Francisco; he loved with a heart on Facebook a poster from ISIS supporters showing Santa overlooking Times Square with a box of dynamite at his side.
The second issue of The Youth of the Caliphate, released Nov. 9, encouraged followers to join in "media jihad" by committing to daily online activities such as disseminating propaganda in support of ISIS; it included tips to lessen the online jihadist's chances of getting quickly caught.