Jihadis Encourage Lone Acts of Terrorism

Publication: Terrorism Focus Volume: 4 Issue: 14

A new article posted on the jihadi forum alhanein.com on May 4, entitled “Supporting the Islamic State by Single-Handed Terrorism,” instructs Islamist fighters to conduct lone acts of terrorism against people and groups involved with the Iraqi government. The article is authored by a user with the name Fahid al-Hadaithi who is relatively new to the forum (his first post was in February of this year), but already has more than 500 posts attributed to his name.

At the beginning of his posting, al-Hadaithi gloriously mentions some of the major terrorist operations perpetrated by jihadi movements in general, noting al-Qaeda in particular. Al-Hadaithi says, “The Islamic jihadi movements are going through great events they never dreamt of before that commenced, sequentially, right after the establishment of the World Islamic Front for Jihad Against Jews and Crusaders headed by Osama bin Laden, may God protect him. The events varied from hitting the [U.S.] embassies in Africa to the destruction of the USS Cole and the great event in our times [the September 11, 2001 attacks] that changed the face of the world and paved the way for the jihadi market that sells paradise in Mesopotamia.” Al-Hadaithi believes that these terrorist acts have given rise to the first Islamic state of the monotheists since the fall of the Uthman caliphate in 656 CE. In the context of al-Hadaithi’s perspective that the West is targeting Muslims across the world, al-Hadaithi encourages jihadis to target the infidels, hypocrites, apostates and those who collaborate with the enemy anywhere that they can be found. According to al-Hadaithi, soldiers of Islam in Iraq attack the apostates day and night, forcing many of these enemies to flee and operate their anti-Islamic agendas from the safety of other countries. Al-Hadaithi states that the collaborators must be deprived of these safe havens by attacking them outside of the theaters of major jihadi operations.

When conducting individual terrorist acts, al-Hadaithi says that the mujahid fighter does not have to belong to a group physically since that could compromise his mission. While individual teams are recommended, al-Hadaithi says that the largest possible cell should include no more than five people. These cells should target: individuals working with the Iraqi government from abroad; members of Shiite militias outside Iraq; individuals who fight the Islamic State of Iraq in the media or financially, providing the example of Mashaan Jabouri, the head of al-Zawraa television, who is based in Syria; the Shiite merchants that supply Iraqi militias with money and arms; devil worshippers; and the Christians, because they have not pledged allegiance to the mujahideen’s amir [Abu Omar al-Baghdadi] and are helping the Western crusaders. While all infidels are legitimate targets for individual acts of terrorism, al-Hadaithi places priority on the killings of indigenous infidels in countries such as Syria, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates and, in particular, the “rich merchants” of Dubai, Lebanon, Egypt, Yemen and Turkey.

As for the type of attacks to be employed, al-Hadaithi recommends assassinations and attacking congregations of people in hotels, embassies and conference gatherings. Furthermore, al-Hadaithi suggests a number of specific targets and provides the locations where Iraqi nationals congregate in Iraq and in Gulf countries where Shiites, Assyrians and Christians live and assist the Iraqi government. Al-Hadaithi proposes hitting Iraqi government representatives in countries where weapons and explosives can be procured easily, such as in Yemen. He recommends using booby-trapped vehicles or rockets to conduct the attacks.

In explaining the modus operandi of conducting individual terrorist acts, al-Hadaithi provides an example of an actual operation that occurred a year ago in an unidentified Arab country. As part of the attack, a lone jihadi elicited information from an Iraqi merchant who was heading a network of Iraqis collaborating with the government. The jihadi lured the merchant into a nightclub and killed him and his girlfriend using a gun equipped with a silencer. Later, the same jihadi targeted two others in the same network and killed them too. Al-Hadaithi did not provide any more specifics on the alleged murders.

If Islamist fighters are able to increase the number of individual terrorist acts, such as by targeting individuals and government representatives outside of Iraq, it will widen the threat posed by this movement. Consequently, these new tactics would likely radicalize the Iraq conflict further.