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IS Threatens To 'Burn America' In New Propaganda Video

A capture from an 11-minute Islamic State (IS) propaganda video titled We Will Burn America

A capture from an 11-minute Islamic State (IS) propaganda video titled We Will Burn America

A new propaganda video released by the militant group Islamic State (IS) threatens to carry out 9/11-style attacks on the United States and warns that American citizens are not safe.

The 11-minute video is titled We Will Burn America and incorporates multiple shots of planes being flown by terrorists into the World Trade Center towers on September 11, 2001, as well as footage of the October 2014 attack on Ottawa's Parliament Hill.

"America thinks its (sic) safe because of its geographical location. Thus, you see, it invades Muslim lands and it thinks that the Army of Jihad will not reach their lands," the video -- which has an Arabic voiceover and English subtitles -- declares.

The video's narrator says that the "dream of the Americans to have safety became a mirage. Today there is no safety for any American on the globe."

To illustrate its point that IS militants have attacked American citizens, the propaganda video includes graphic footage of the execution-style beheadings of two U.S. journalists, James Foley and Steven Sotloff. The footage shows British IS militant Mohammed Emwazi, nicknamed "Jihadi John," who has been seen in a number of IS videos of the killings of hostages.

The central message of the new IS video is that IS is much more powerful -- and therefore poses a far greater threat to the United States -- than Al-Qaeda was in the past.

Previously, "mujahideen" (jihadi fighters) with fewer resources than IS now has were able to perpetrate the 9/11 attacks, the video says.

"That blessed incursion was a fatal blow," the video's narrator intones, adding later that, "By the grace of Allah, the Mujahideen [militants] today are much more stronger (sic) and they have more resource (sic) than before."

Grisly footage taken from previous videos and showing IS militants carrying out mass beheadings of Syrian hostages is also shown in the video.

"They supplicate what they worship and die upon their paganism," the subtitle reads during one scene of a mass beheading.

The burning alive by IS militants of Jordanian pilot Muath al-Kasasbeh is also featured.

The video shows footage of IS militants in Syria and Iraq using modern heavy weaponry, and includes an excerpt of an audio address by IS spokesman Abu Muhammad al-Adnani, who vows that the militant group will "continue on our path so trusted of our Lord's victory."

"So die with your rage," Adnani says.

The new IS video also makes reference to the January terrorist shootings in Paris, when gunmen stormed the offices of the Charlie Hebdo satirical magazine, killing 12 people. The video shows footage of Amedy Coulibaly, the French militant who killed four hostages in a Parisian kosher grocery store two days later. Coulibaly had appeared in a seven-minute video where he pledged allegiance to IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and claimed that he had coordinated his attacks with Cherif and Said Kouachi, the two brothers who carried out the Charlie Hebdo shootings.

"That's how Europe became today, no safety and Security (sic) and by Allahs (sic) permission soon America will follow in the same way," the video's English subtitles read.

A Sign Of Weakness?

The release of the video by IS comes as the group is coming under pressure in Syria and Iraq, amid an ongoing air campaign by the U.S.-led anti-IS coalition. In Iraq, a ground campaign by Iraqi forces backed by Shi'ite militias has pushed IS out from the city of Tikrit, in what was the worst defeat yet for the militants.

In Syria, Kurdish militias have made advances in the past few days into the northern province of Raqqa, where IS has established its de facto capital.

-- Joanna Paraszczuk

About This Blog

"Under The Black Flag" provides news, opinion, and analysis about the impact of the Islamic State (IS) extremist group in Syria, Iraq, and beyond. It focuses not only on the fight against terrorist groups in the Middle East, but also on the implications for the region and the world. The blog's primary author, James Miller, closely covered the first three years of the Arab Spring, with a focus on Syria, and is now the managing editor of The Interpreter, where he covers Russia's foreign and domestic policy and the Kremlin's wars in Syria and Ukraine. Follow him on Twitter: @Millermena


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