CEP has now released profiles on 54 of the most prolific ISIS operatives on Twitter. The profiles of all 54 can be found on CEP’s Global Extremist Registry, a unique searchable database and interactive map of the world’s most notorious extremist leaders, propagandists, and financiers. The information is presented in both list form and graphically on a world map. Users can search name, by political leader, or filter by extremist group.
“The evidence of the power of the Internet to radicalize and encourage violence is borne out by the fact that 30,000 people, an estimated 250 from the U.S. alone, have joined ISIS from countries around the world,” said CEP CEO Ambassador Mark D. Wallace. “CEP has profiled 90 American foreign fighters and extremist supporters whose one shared characteristic appears to be social media exposure. With more than 40,000 pro-Islamic State Twitter accounts sending at least 90,000 messages a day and with the dissemination of hundreds of videos glorifying murder, rape, and brutality, combatting the weaponization of social media platforms by extremist groups has become one of the most pressing public safety and national security threats we face today.”
More than 15 months ago, CEP launched #CEPDigitalDisruption — an ongoing campaign and research effort that has exposed and begun to quantify ISIS’s weaponization of social media, particularly Twitter, where vulnerable individuals are first exposed to propaganda and radical content. A team of CEP researchers meticulously identifies and tracks extremists and their supporters tweeting in English, Arabic, Turkish, French, German, and Italian. CEP has reported hundreds of instances of direct threats and incitement to violence, and although Twitter has modified its terms of service, it still does not proactively take down violent pro-Islamic State messages.
The following is a sampling of the new profiles and Tweets from key ISIS recruiters, propagandists, and inciters to violence.
Niko Area/Rea uses Twitter to spread propaganda on behalf of ISIS. Niko Area is known for his tweets with flippant captions ascribed to his cat, often pictured, to convey his distaste for non-Sunni ethnic groups he considers heretical, such as the Shiite Syrian-based Nuseyri religious group and the “Rafidi,” a pejorative collective term for Shiites.
“Please cup of Rafidha blood” (August 16, 2015)
GreenBirdofDabiq is a prolific recruiter and propagandist for ISIS and an advocate for militant Islam. Claiming to Tweet from Raqqa, Syria, she regularly advertises the terror group’s latest exploits, encourages Muslims to join ISIS and promotes anti-gay materials.
“Congratulations America—while you were busy arguing over gay marriage we established a caliphate.” (June 28, 2015)
Deen Design, also known as “Ciné Deen” and “E-Muslim,” is a French graphic designer who uses images to propagate ISIS messaging on Twitter and Facebook. He is often retweeted by other French speaking ISIS supporters, as well as English speakers, and frequently quotes Osama bin Laden and U.S.-born AQAP propagandist Anwar al-Awlaki.
Translation: “Hijra [migration] will not cease until repentance will be accepted and repentance will not be accepted so long as the Sun has not yet risen in the West.” (July 1, 2015)
Abu Mohammed B. is an ISIS recruiter and propagandist operating on Twitter. Abu Mohammed B. claims to live in the “Caliphate” although this is impossible to confirm, as is his background and country of origin. He makes relentless calls for hijrah or migration to ISIS-held territory.
“Who makes hijrah for Allah swt he will be forgiven all sins!!! What r u waiting, that death come to u there?,” (November 4, 2015)
Abu Salman al-Faranci is a French propagandist and recruiter for ISIS. Al-Faranci uses Twitter to propagandize and convince Muslims to migrate to ISIS-held territory. In 2014, al-Faranci appeared in an ISIS video titled “What Are You Waiting For?” imploring viewers in cases where hijrah is not possible, to “operate within France,” including by terrorizing and killing people using weapons, cars, and poison.
Translation: “Stop being hypocrites with yourselves… the brothers of Aqeedah in France I swear to you, you are worth nothing compared to the people of Hijra [migration] and jihad.” (August 5, 2015)
Skafisti is a Twitter propagandist who spreads ISIS ideology by disseminating the group’s publications and tweeting in support of its actions. On December 2, Skafisti touted an ISIS propaganda video on “marriage contracts” in the so-called Islamic State. The video, aimed at a Western audiences, has English subtitles.
“Kuffs cannot escape with their crimes,& here are no tanks in the earth or jets I the heavens that can protect them from Alah’s punishment.” (December 5, 2015)