Abu Osama

“Abu Osama” is a French-speaking propagandist and recruiter for ISIS. Osama uses social media outlets—including Twitter—to propagandize and recruit members to ISIS. Abu Osama appears to have maintained at least two accounts—@AbouOuss1020 and @abouuOussama10—that retweet each other. Though unconfirmed, it appears Osama is also the same French recruiter as Abu Osama al-Faranci, who has appeared in an ISIS video titled “What Are You Waiting For?”Des combattants français de l’Etat islamique appellent les musulmans à commettre des attentats en France,” MEMRI FR, November 20, 2014, http://www.memri.fr/2014/11/20/des-combattants-francais-de-letat-islamique-appellent-les-musulmans-a-commettre-des-attentats-en-france. The video, produced by ISIS’s Al-Hayat Media Center, features al-Faranci pressuring his audience to make hijrah (migration) to ISIS territory.

Screenshot from ISIS’s “What Are You Waiting For?” video, produced by Al-Hayat Media Center

Through Twitter, Abu Osama uses guilt, fear, derision, intimidation, and other pressure tactics in order to convince French Muslims to join ISIS.

On August 8, 2015, Osama tweeted, “Are they good your vacations in the sun? You had fun, huh? And your brothers who are being killed bc you stayed home, does that cross your mind occasionally?”Abu Osama, Twitter post, August 8, 2015, 8:09 a.m. On August 2, 2015, Osama tweeted, “Prepare an answer to the question, ‘Why didn’t you fight My enemies like I commanded you’….”AbZeyd, Twitter post, August 2, 2015, 1:58 p.m.

These types of posts come in contrast with more direct tactics for recruitment, including a June 2015 post wherein Osama tweeted, “Hurry, there are still routes open for the Hijra [migration]… #Tawakul [trust in Allah]”AbZeyd, Twitter post, June 17, 2015, 12:44 p.m. In another June post, he wrote, “We’re almost at the middle of the night, leave your tel[ephone] and your pc [computer] and pray to your lord for your brothers. Baraka Allah fik akhi [May Allah bless you, brother].”AbZeyd, Twitter post, June 14, 2015, 4:23 p.m.

Translation: “Your sister has been raped[,] imprisoned[, and] tortured and you[,] your greatest concern is knowing what movie you’ll see tonight.”

Osama’s posts also idealize violence, and praise ISIS’s use of violence in particular. On August 3, 2015, Osama posted, “The pride you will feel when you have a Kalash[nikov rifle] in hand, when you will ensure that Allah’s laws are enforced on Earth….”Abu Osama, Twitter post, August 3, 2015, 2:42 a.m.

Abu Osama has also praised and rationalized ISIS’s history of violence. In June 2015, he touted ISIS’s killing of “46,000 disbelievers.”AbZeyd, Twitter post, June 11, 2015, 8:46 a.m. In August, he posted a tweet in alliance with ISIS’s rationalization of violence, writing, “Oh you Muslims, Islam has never been a religion of peace, Islam is a religion of combat.”AbZeyd, Twitter post, August 1, 2015, 7:13 p.m.

Translation: “The pride you will feel when you have a Kalash[nikov rifle] in hand, when you will ensure that Allah’s laws are enforced on Earth…”

Osama has also used Twitter to idealize life under ISIS rule, writing on August 3, 2015, that “the best sensation that I’ve had is when I took my first steps on the land of Islam [ISIS-held territory]…”AbZeyd, Twitter post, August 3, 2015, 12:28 p.m. In that vein, Osama occasionally posts photos advertising life under ISIS rule, looking to emphasize the so-called Islamic nature of ISIS territory through his photos.

Translation: “It’s not in France that you will see this… ma sha Allah [whatever Allah wills]”

Translation: “The Muslim population is watching Islamic State [ISIS] videos .. It’s not in France that you will see this”

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On July 23, 2016, two suicide bombers targeted members of Afghanistan’s Hazara ethnic minority who were demonstrating in Kabul. ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack, which killed at least 97 people and injured 260 others. 

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