IS release videos praising Palestinian stabbing attacks
The media wing of the Islamic State released six videos Sunday in support of the wave of stabbing attacks carried out by Palestinians attackers against Israelis in the West Bank and Jerusalem.
One video, titled “Project Behead the Jews” stated that the current situation on al-Aqsa is “dangerous.” Accusing the Jews of destroying it by spending $2 million towards the “Judaisation of Jerusalem," excavating tunnels under the al-Aqsa mosque and stealing Islamic documents.
Muslims fear Israel is seeking to change the status quo regarding Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa mosque compound, located in east Jerusalem, a site sacred to both Muslims and Jews, who refer to it as the Temple Mount. Jews are allowed to visit, but not pray there to avoid provoking tensions.
The recent wave of violence has led to the deaths of 8 Israelis and 41 Palestinians, including 20 terrorists. Most of the attackers have been young Palestinians wielding knives who are believed to be acting on their own.
With the image of 18 year-old Hadil al-Hashlamoun, who was killed in the West Bank city of Hebron by an Israeli soldier on September 22nd, the voice of what is believed to be Abu Baker al-Baghdadi, the leader of IS, is heard saying "we will have our revenge."
It is not entirely clear from the video if al-Bagdhadi is indeed referring to al-Hashlamoun.
In a second video, entitled “Message to the Mujaheddin in Jerusalem,” shows a number of unmasked IS militants praising the attacks and calling on other Palestinians to follow suit.
“I recommend that you take the path of Jihad, which God tells you to follow, I bless this jihad against the Jews. Strike fear in their hearts, they are the enemies of God,” said one young fighter.
“A victory is coming to the mujahedin of al Aqsa from above, you are the ones who start but we will continue it,” said another young militant brandishing an American-made automatic rifle.
“The mujahedin of Beit al Maqdis have struck fear in the hearts of the Jews and their children,” said another militant, referring to the Temple Mount complex. “You should know that Jihad in the name of Allah (god) is the only legal way to defeat the enemies of Islam. Let your fight be in the name of Allah and not for the interests of parties who have special interests. The ones who are blessed are the ones who fight in the name of Allah.”
Another older militant directing his message to “all the Muslims of al-Quds,” said that there is “no difference between Hamas and Fatah. Both only care about their own interests and some are even agents of the crusaders and the Jews. Hurry up and save your brothers, don’t wait for the Arab leaders to help you.”
Four other videos released Sunday night are similar in nature, released under the hashtag #BeheadtheJews. In one video, IS gave instructions on how to kill Jews, by using cars, knives, firebombing their homes, bombing buses and even by injecting air into their veins, a clear call to the hundreds of Arab-Israelis who work in hospitals in Israel.
The videos were released by the media wings of the Islamic State provinces of Raqqa, Niniveh, Kirkuk, al-Janub, Fallujah and al-Khayr, in Syria and Iraq.
The last video released by the group which discussed Palestinians was in July where they accused Hamas of being insufficiently stringent about religious enforcement.
"Eight years they control the territory, and have yet to enforce one Islamic teaching," the IS speaker said in the video. "We will uproot the state of the Jews (Israel) and you and Fatah, and all of the secularists are nothing and you will be over-run by our creeping multitudes," a masked IS member said in the video message.
"The rule of Sharia (Islamic law) will be implemented in Gaza, in spite of you. We swear that what is happening in the Levant today, and in particular the Yarmouk camp, will happen in Gaza," he said.
Israeli authorities know of at least 30 Arab Israelis who have made their way to Syria to fight for jihadist groups against Assad's regime, but that only a few joined IS.
In 2014, Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon declared IS an illegal organization.
Authorities broke up the first known case of an IS plot in Israel in early October, indicting seven Israeli-Arabs on charges of belonging to an IS cell planning to attack military targets.
According to a statement released by the police, the defendants had been in contact with Israeli citizens who had already joined IS in Syria who encouraged them to illegally purchase weapons and learn how to use them in order to carry out an attack.
The defendants were charged with unlawful contact with a foreign agent, weapons violations, including arms trafficking and conspiracy to commit a crime.
In June six Bedouin men, including four school teachers, were arrested by Israeli security forces for purportedly supporting IS.
Arab Israelis number around 1.4 million, just over 20 percent of Israel's population.
They are the descendants of the 160,000 Palestinian Arabs who remained on their land when the Jewish state was established in 1948.
Anna Ahronheim is a journalist at i24news. She can be followed on Twitter @aahronheim
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One and the same. PA = Hamas = Isis