Volume 4: The Failed Crusade
This volume opens with a focus on having belief in Allah and offers reassurance that Da’esh’s conduct is bonafide. Thus, they attribute doubt in their operation to the historical concept of jÉhiliyyah (ignorance) which, if left unchecked, can render individuals vulnerable to Da’esh’s wrath. Their discussions feedback into the principles of bayah, khilafah & imamah established in earlier volumes. In this particular volume Da’esh cement Abu Musab al Zarqawi as a jihadi visionary who proposed to liberate Jerusalem and recapture Rome. In pursuit of this global vision Da’esh boasts the enslavement of non-Muslim women and children as an apparent objective of jihad itself but also encourages its readership to attack the crusaders in their own lands. Here Da’esh takes a particularly aggressive and indiscriminate stance against civilians of countries who have supported efforts against them. They advise their operatives to kill anyone they deem to be non-Muslim in ‘crusader’ lands. In doing so, Da’esh laden their narrative with emotional appeals and references to scores Muslims who have been killed as a result of western intervention.
Furthermore, Da’esh reassures its fighters that they will be rewarded for the hardships that they have endured. Indeed, death for them is victory as divine glory at the cost of temporal loss makes absolute sense. They advocate against oppressions and instruct their readership to focus their efforts on the crusaders; being America and its allies. Da’esh impresses the importance of jihad continuity into future generations and also speaks about the economic cost of warfare and continual occupation. They vigorously argue that the grey zone of uncertainty has shrunk and now there are clear and definitive choices that individuals need to make; either faith or disbelief. Thus, they advocate for indiscriminate violence across the world and reaffirm their desire to conquer Rome.
In this volume Da’esh introduces the concept of al-wal wal bara'ah (association and disassociation for the sake of Allah). They depict the prophet Muhammad as a warrior prophet and seek to reassure their readership that Allah provides for those who fight in His path. They justify their position for the reintroduction of slavery and have an evident zeal for warfare leading to an apocalypse. However, at the very same time, Da’esh also speaks of the investment it has made within its regions in respect of community, security, trade, and redevelopment. Branding and attribution of credit is important to Da’esh as they actively seek to take credit for attacks and incidents purportedly done in their name. In doing so, they discredit other operational jihadi groups unless they’ve pledge allegiance to Da’esh. The title of this volume relates to Americas military intervention against Da’esh and Da’esh’s subsequent designation of those endeavours as a failed crusade against them.