ISIS plans to take advantage of the turmoil in the world by launching a “global offensive” against its opponents. The terrorist group has instructed its supporters to look for ways to inflict retribution for the murder of its leader, Abu Ibrahim al Hashimi al Quraysh, who was killed earlier this year in February with the help of United States special forces in Syria. They also discussed the possibility of launching attacks on Europe and Israel.
Abu-Omar al-Muhajir, a representative of the Islamic State, planned to make the most of a holy day in the month of Ramadan, while other Muslims were “preoccupied” with other issues. He called on ISIS militants to seek revenge for Abu Ibrahim al Hashimi al Qurayshi's demise while delivering his speech in the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
Al-Qurayshi was the leader of the ISIS movement from the beginning of 2019 until his death this past February. He took over the ISIS leadership role after Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who was killed in the U.S.-led operation in the fall of 2019.
In his address, Abu-Omar al-Muhajir exhorted his troops to embark on a “blessed campaign” to take revenge. “Fight them all, and Allah will answer and punish them at your hands,” he stated. He added that the time was “ripe” for a strike from ISIS and urged loyal fighters to strike Western nations.
This tense and threatening rhetoric came as tensions are rising within Israel. Recent terror attacks have claimed the lives of 14 Israelis, and Israel has started daily raids to arrest people in addition to launching various military actions in Israel's West Bank. The attacks occurred during the confluence of Ramadan, Passover, and Holy Week leading to Easter. This meant there were thousands of people visiting Jerusalem's Old City, home to the holy sites of all three religions.
Abu-Omar al-Muhajir stated that Jerusalem should be “redeemed” through the Islamic State “caliphate,” according to the New York Times. A caliphate can be described as a political and religious state that aims to unify people from all over the Muslim world. This is the aim of ISIS.
ISIS declared itself a caliphate in 2014. At that time, it covered areas of Syria and Iraq and included millions of people living within its borders. However, there was a significant backlash from Kurdish-Syrian and Iraqi forces, supported by the United States, and they were able to defeat the caliphate in 2019. The result was that ISIS withdrew to its desert hideouts and was forced to engage in guerrilla warfare. According to a United Nations report, there are still around 10,000 ISIS fighters in both Iraq and Syria.
There is not much information about the current ISIS leader, Abu Hasan al Hasan al-Hashimi Al-Qurashi. He was picked by his predecessor shortly before his execution at the hands of U.S. special forces.
Following the victory over ISIS in Syria, the militant group was silent for a time. Olivier Guitta, managing director of GlobalStrat–a global security-risk consulting firm, stated that he believes that ISIS members think they must revive their attacks in order to gain the trust of their supporters. “The question is whether Isis has the logistical capacity to carry out a spectacular attack in Europe like in 2015 in Paris or 2016 in Brussels,” he told the media.
Recently, Palestinian militants fired a rocket at the southern part of Israel for the first time in several months. Israel intercepted the rocket without reports of injuries or damage. On Tuesday, it was reported that an Israeli fighter jet launched some airstrikes south of the Gaza Strip. The strikes targeted a manufacturing facility of Hamas, according to the Israeli military. There were no reports of injuries as a result of the strikes.
If the reports are true, while Western nations are united in an armed struggle for peace in Europe, ISIS is getting ready to wreak havoc across the globe.