(New York, N.Y.) — The Counter Extremism Project (CEP) reports weekly on the methods used by extremists to exploit the Internet and social media platforms to recruit followers and incite violence. Last week CEP researchers found seven Facebook accounts that posted pro-ISIS propaganda, accumulating hundreds of views in the process.
An ISIS video titled “So Wait, We Are Waiting With You” was found on multiple websites, with links spread on Telegram and Element. An infamous ISIS bomb-making video that has been linked to the May 2017 Manchester Arena bombing perpetrator was found again, and removed from, the Internet Archive. Lastly, white supremacist, antisemitic, and anti-Muslim content, such as an active group with 700 members dedicated to the white supremacist streamer Paul Miller, was found on the gaming platform Steam.
Pro-ISIS Content Located on Facebook
From October 3 to October 9, CEP researchers found seven Facebook accounts that posted pro-ISIS propaganda. Content included an official ISIS leadership statement from the group’s al-Furqan media outlet originally released in the summer of 2021, ISIS propaganda photo sets, advertisements and external links for an ISIS propaganda video released on October 5, and clips taken from official ISIS propaganda videos, including at least one video that showed mass executions, and videos that showed the use of vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices.
In total, CEP located ten videos on Facebook composed of footage taken from official ISIS propaganda videos. The mean values for the videos were a time duration on the social media site of seven and a half days, 78 likes/reactions, 14 comments, eight shares, and 272 views. Of the 18 pieces of content that CEP reported to Facebook for violating their Community Standards, six (33%) were removed three days later. Content that remained online included footage from ISIS propaganda videos, ISIS propaganda photosets, and advertising and links to ISIS content on other websites.
Official ISIS leadership statement, originally released summer of 2021, available on Facebook, October 7.
New ISIS Video Released on Multiple Websites
ISIS released a new video on October 5 from the group’s self-proclaimed province in Iraq. Titled “So Wait, We Are Waiting With You,” the video was approximately 50 minutes long and contained footage from 2020 and 2021. The video included extensive combat footage that showed attacks on Iraqi Federal Police installations and roadside bombings. The video also showed multiple assassinations and executions of a political candidate, security forces members, alleged intelligence services members, men accused of being spies, and alleged members of both pro-government and sectarian militias. It also included voiceovers from ISIS’s former leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and showed the burning of crops, the destruction of agricultural equipment, and the wreckage of a crashed Iraqi military drone.
The video was posted on Telegram, Hoop, and Element. Links to the video were spread on Element and Telegram. On October 5, the video was posted to at least 18 websites. Approximately 24 hours later, the video was still available on eight websites: the Internet Archive, Bcove.Video, Yandex.Com, the IPFS distributed web platform, File.Fm, Transfer.Sh, Tune.Pk, and Vudeo.Net. Additional links were posted to at least 13 websites on October 6. 24 hours later, the video was still available on nine of those websites: Transfer.Sh, the Internet Archive, Yandex.Com, File.Fm, Fromsmash.Com, Gofile.Io, Tune.Pk, Wetransfer.com, and Mediafire. CEP additionally located the video on a pro-ISIS private file hosting site on Nextcloud. The Internet Archive removed the video after CEP reported it.
Notorious ISIS Bomb-Making Video Located on the Internet Archive
CEP researchers located a notorious ISIS bomb-making video on the Internet Archive that instructs viewers on making explosive devices using commercially available products. This specific video has been linked to the May 2017 Manchester Arena bombing perpetrator, who killed 22 people and injured hundreds more. The video also encourages attacks in the West and shows knife tactics on a human target, who is brutally executed in the process. The video was uploaded on August 29, 2020. The Internet Archive quickly removed the video after CEP reported it. The video has been found multiple other times on the Internet Archive, and in those cases, the site removed it as well.
White Supremacist, Antisemitic, Anti-Muslim Content Located on Steam
CEP researchers found white supremacist, antisemitic, and anti-Muslim content on the gaming platform and social network Steam. Examples included an active group with almost 700 members dedicated to the white supremacist streamer Paul Miller, who is currently serving a three and a half year prison sentence for firearms-related offenses. The Steam group claimed to be endorsed by Miller and contained links to his videos on other websites. CEP additionally found a group dedicated to an antisemitic meme that included anti-Jewish hate speech and the propagation of antisemitic conspiracy theories. Comments were located in a different group from March 2021 that glorified the Christchurch attacker.