ISIS Applauds Trump’s Killing Soleimani

According to BBC’s top expert on jihadist movements, official publications from ISIS are now calling the killing of the Iranian General Qasem Soleimani an act of God, and are portraying Shiite Iran as Muslims’ greatest enemy, more so even than powers that don’t claim to be Muslim.

In a series of tweets from the BBC’s jihadism-expert, Mina al-Lami, she explains why ISIS is ecstatic that Soleimani is dead — they say that it’s because the killing of Soleimani is a strong display from God that God is wreaking revenge against the opponents of jihad. Her tweets show photos of some of these ISIS publications, paraphrase from them, and place their statements into a broader context of Islamic history and of the ancient split between fundamentalist Sunni Islam, on the one hand, and all of Shiite Islam (including especially Iran’s), on the other.

Here are highlights from this string of tweets, by Mina al-Lami, the BBC’s expert on jihadist movements. She makes clear, “Views are mine.” These statements do not come from BBC, but from herself, to explain why ISIS is so happy that Solomeini is dead:

BBC ISIS Specialist Mina al-Lami
Jihadism specialist; Editorial Lead/team manager @BBC Monitoring ( Views are mine.
Jan 10

This is the typical position of jihadists in such situations: they gloat and pray that God weakens their enemies’ at the hands of one another, for the benefit of jihadists[:]

IS gloats at death of Soleimani in first comment on US-Iran crisis
Islamic State group (ISIS) has welcomed the death of Iranian commander Qasem Soleimani, portraying his demise in a U.S. drone strike on 3 Janua
6:22 AM – 10 Jan 2020

Thread: In the editorial of its weekly paper #AlNaba, #ISIS welcomes the death of #Soleimani in a U.S. drone strike, but is careful not to openly credit the U.S. for his demise but portrays it as an act of God to support IS and Muslims more broadly.
12:57 AM – 10 Jan 2020

It welcomes IS enemies being busy fighting each other, saying it distracts them away from “Muslims” and drains their energy which, it adds, benefits jihadists.
12:57 AM – 10 Jan 2020

It says, thanking God, U.S. and Iran are today busy targeting each other “indifferent to the impact it has on their mutual fight against the Islamic State”.
12:57 AM – 10 Jan 2020

Elsewhere in al-Naba, IS factually reports on U.S. suspension of its operations against IS in Iraq, and notes “European” concern about the impact it may have on empowering IS
12:57 AM – 10 Jan 2020

This is the typical position of jihadists in such situations: they gloat and pray that God weakens their enemies’ at the hands of one another, for the benefit of jihadists
12:57 AM – 10 Jan 2020


Though, generally in the press, jihadism is treated as being just a movement of some crazed Muslims, that common portrayal is a serious distortion of the reality, which goes back to 1744, when the fundamentalist Islamic cleric Muhammad ibn Abd al Wahhab signed a blood oath with the aspiring political leader and conqueror Muhammad ibn Saud, to form a new Islamic nation, starting in the desert of what now is Saudi Arabia. It was to be a fusion in which the laws come from God as based upon the Quran, and the government applies those laws, so that, in effect, the Quran is to become the constitution for Muslim countries. That’s Sharia Law — law derived from the Quran and from its expert interpreters as determined by the Wahhabist clergy. Wahhab hated Shiites and considered them to be the worst and most hypocritical fake Muslims, followers of distorters of the will of God as it had been expressed by God’s Prophet Mohammed in the Quran. Whereas in this new nation, the government would be ruled by descendants from Muhammad ibn Saud, the clergy would be followers of Muhammad ibn Wahhab. Part of their shared oath was to convert or kill all Shiites. This is the most extreme exclusionist version of Islam. In other countries than Saudi Arabia, it is known not as Wahhabism, but as Salafism, or ancestral Islam, because it is claimed to represent the purest interpretation of God’s laws. The greatest threat to it, in that view, is Shia Islam, which must be wiped out in order to then become enabled to take over the world for God by going after all other infidels.

On 9 June 2017, I headlined “All Islamic Terrorism Is Perpetrated by Fundamentalist Sunnis, Except Terrorism Against Israel” and listed there the 54 most prominently reported instances of Islamic terrorism, from 11 September 2001 to then — a 16-year period — and all of them except for the ones that were directed against Israel, were by fundamentalist-Sunni groups. (Israel also was hit by some Sunni groups, but all other countries only by Sunni groups.) Not all of those terrorist groups were Wahhabist, but all were either Wahhabist or Salafist.

ISIS is the most extreme of all fundamentalist Sunni groups. One of its main differences from Al Qaeda is that whereas Al Qaeda leadership try to restrain their members from attacking Shiites, and aim to achieve as wide support from the world’s Muslims as they possibly can while still advancing the jihadist cause, there are no such restraints placed upon the followers of ISIS regarding Shiites, all of whom are instead to be treated as infidels, and either killed or else converted.

Iranian General Soleimani was among the leading, if not the very top, of all generals worldwide, leading the fight against ISIS, not only in Iraq, but as far away as in India. This is the reason why ISIS lauds what Trump did.

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