ISIS is encouraging its followers to focus on a new type of jihad against the West – setting fires.
In its latest edition of its monthly “Rumiyah” magazine Friday, the terror group called upon ‘lone-wolf’ jihadis to launch arson attacks, explaining how setting large blazes requires minimal effort in simply obtaining a canister of gasoline—a task that “should not arouse any suspicion.”
“Incendiary attacks have played a significant role in modern and guerilla warfare,” the author writes, offering a suggested list of soft targets, including nightclubs, schools, hospitals and churches.
A picture of the First Baptist Church, a Dallas megachurch appears, with the caption: “A popular Crusader gathering place waiting to be burned down.”
“A specific church in Dallas, mentioned in Rumiyah, is taking things to a new level,” commented Graeme Wood, author of “The Way of the Strangers: Encounters with the Islamic State” a new book focusing on the mindset of Islamic State believers.
Last month, a pro-ISIS group published a list of churches across the U.S. just before Christmas, leaving authorities scrambling and prompting the FBI and Department of Homeland Security to release a warning.
To further the push for arson attacks, the author claims the November fire destroying a three-story furniture factory in the Russian town of Losino-Petrovsky was the work of one of its “soldiers;” A claim previously made by the terror group in its weekly Arabic newspaper “Naba.”
He also notes the Israeli wildfires of November 2016 as an example of the severe devastation and chaos that can be caused by fires, irrespective of whether natural causes or arson were factors.
“Likewise, the whole world witnessed the devastating fires that ravaged Jewish settlements in Palestine, destroying around 700 Jewish homes. Irrespective of the motive, this deliberate act of
destruction demonstrated the lethality of such an effortless operation,” the author writes.
Israeli police have pushed back on earlier claims by some government officials that some of the fires that were started deliberately amounted to cases of “pyro-terrorism.”
The article concludes by reminding jihadis to lay claim to their attacks, suggesting they spray paint walls near their target area claiming the fires were started by a “soldier of the Islamic State,” or to tape a claim-message to a brick which can then be tossed into a building nearby the scene of the arson.
Since the launch of the online magazine in September, Rumiyah, Arabic for Rome and a reference to an Islamic prophecy that foretells the downfall of Rome, has introduced a section “Just terror tactics,” dedicated to training militants on how to launch ‘DIY style’ or ‘do it yourself,’ terror attacks. Previous editions have included ‘Knife jihad’ and a tutorial on how to launch the most effective truck ramming attack.
Elsewhere in the magazine, ISIS calls upon jihadis to continue with attacks on Turkey, as well as propaganda mocking Syrian rebels, a summary of ISIS terror attacks across the world over the past month and an interview with “Amir Hisbah of Sinai.”