The same day vice presidential candidates met to clash over who had the best plan to stop terrorism, the Islamic State was telling would-be jihadists that they didn’t need a lot of planning to wage homespun attacks—just a sharp weapon and the most mundane of targets.
The chilling directive was issued in the second edition of ISIS’ new magazine Rumiyah, a monthly publication distributed in several languages on easily accessible sites across the web.
ISIS plainly stated, for starters, that they would eschew the term “lone wolf” to describe terrorists popping up in communities from Minnesota to Belgium. From now on, the magazine said, any attacks in the lands of “disbelievers” conducted with a pledge of allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi will be called “just terror operations.” That’s not “just” as in just a bit of terror, but “justice,” the group explained. They’ll no doubt use their other favored monikers like “lion of the caliphate,” but there’s calculated outreach in the “lone wolf” phrasing shift: ascribing a degree of loftiness and official business to what would otherwise sound like an out-of-control loner.
That was the first propaganda poaching from al-Qaeda, who started calling their lone operators “open-source jihad” a long time ago