Call to action: What is Islamic State’s motivation, in their own words?


Update: I think this question has been answered. See end of the post.

Yesterday on “The Non-Prophets”, we spent some time discussing the fact that we don’t entirely know or understand what the “Islamic State” terrorists claim as their motivation. The group has claimed credit for the recent attacks in Paris, but the news articles we reviewed had a hard time clearly representing why they do things like this. What is their game plan? What specific beliefs do they have about God, and how do they say committing terrorist acts will further these religious goals?

I do a regular segment on this show called “Shit Internet Apologists Say.” In it, we read and discuss/ridicule the unfiltered rants that religious extremists have written online. I would like to find material that was written by or transcribed from somebody who claims affiliation with IS or al-Qaeda, and who appears to sincerely believe that violence is an effective and justified way to achieve goals that further their specific Muslim sect’s beliefs. The reasons don’t need to make sense, obviously, but they need to be genuinely presented. I’m not looking for the intelligence community’s explanation of what IS thinks, and I definitely don’t want a satirical or sarcastic representation of their beliefs. I want a legitimate link to their real beliefs, in their own words.

If you can find something like that, please post it here, private message me, or pass it along on Twitter while mentioning me (@RussellGlasser) or using hashtag #NonProphetsNews, so that I will notice it. I will read the most useful link on the next show and credit the person who sent it to me. Thanks for your help.

Updated: James Billingham on Facebook has provided a link with the full text of a letter from the Islamic State. Unless something better comes along, I will probably use it. But I think I am definitely going to need to edit it in order to get the good bits.

Comments

  1. John Daskal says

    I would say to start with (Al-Hayat Media Center) which is the media division of ISIL. You would find translations from the recent statement issued by ISIL claiming credit for the Paris attacks in English, Turkish, and Russian for example. They moved it to darknet shortly after the Paris operation so it may be hard to find. You will need a TOR browser in that case. Also there is the official magazine for ISIL I believe is called “Dabiq). These would be good starting points for sure.

    As I am sure you know ISIL or ISIS or DAESH started out as AQI before morphing into what it is today. So anything regarding the history and motives of “Al Qaeda In Iraq” might yield some insights. Much of their motivation is political and not just religious.

    John

  2. AMM says

    According to Cracked.com, they have a magazine.

    It sounds pretty much like what I had expected from reading between the lines of our oh-so-unbiased mainstream media, though utterly different from what the talking heads and blowhards claim.

  3. L.Long says

    Don’t really care about their dimwitted motivations. They are killing people that cannot harm them or help them. So they are just cold blooded murderers!!! Now if they started seriously to blow up gov’mint crap or shoot politicians that have complained to them, their country, or innocent civilians in some way, then I would pay closer attention. Or is hitting the proper target a little difficult for cowards with guns?

  4. says

    I don’t think it makes sense to try to find a single source that explains their motives. There are doubtless people in the ranks who have swallowed the whole islam story hook, line, and sinker. Meanwhile, the leaders may be a mix of some power-loving politicians, a nihilist or two, and perhaps a power-loving thug and a true believer. Movements like ISIS attract a lot of disaffected people willing to do violence – some of them will do it out of desire for revenge for wrongs against friends and family, some against the decadence of the US, some because they’re tired of being pushed around by imperialists, etc, etc. Seneca was right when he said that during the heyday of Rome, and he’s right, now: the religious narrative serves as a social glue to hold together a movement that otherwise probably wouldn’t hold together (thugs don’t tend to be very good at power sharing) So if you ask someone from ISIS they’ll probably blow some crap about islam, the same way that if you asked most Americans “why do you guys do the shit you do?” they might say “to protect democracy!”

    Political islam is more about disempowered post-colonial people who are thoroughly pissed off at “the west” for exploiting them and putting horrible dictators in charge of them to keep the oil flowing. They can contextualize that as the west being decadent because the extractive land-grabs and political manipulation were decadent and in the service of decadence.

    Imagine a large corporation that has a slogan that was cooked up by the marketing company. The CEO uses the slogan because: slogan, whatever, keep the troops in line, meh, stock options..? Some of the marketing people who struggled over it may have actually believed it. The rest of the employees fall between incredulity and grudging acceptance but most people don’t think about it at all; they think about what they’re doing. But if a reporter sticks a mic in their face and they’re on the record they’re likely to blurt the slogan. That doesn’t mean their motivation is deeply connected to the slogan or even the company’s agenda.

    There are probably a few sadist/nihilists in ISIS who gravitate toward an opportunity to fuck people up. We find them wherever there’s deep enough conflict. If you accidentally asked one of them and they told the truth would you publish that ISIS’ purpose is to really fuck people up? It’d be just as true as if you happened to get a true believer. The people who don’t talk about their agendas are the thugs. The Stalins. The Pol Pots. I wonder about that, often; I think they actually don’t care – many of the political monsters of human history appear to be more robotic than ideologic.

    The best answer for why ISIS is doing what it does would be given by O’Brien from 1984 if you asked him: “Because I can.”

  5. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Marcus Ranum
    I appreciate the marketing company slogan comparison. However, I feel as though this is an post hoc rationalization that you found that you think should be convincing, but it’s not what originally led you to that conclusion, in a manner exactly like how Christian apologists often give post hoc rationalizations that they found which they think should be convincing, but it’s not what originally led them to Christianity.

    In particular, when people talk about any non-religious rebel movement or terrorist movement, I never see people like you showing up and saying: “Their expressed motivations of nationalism, stated grievances, etc., are just a front, or a marketing campaign slogan, or a “social glue”, and if you look deeply enough then you would find that their real motivations are religious. Only monsters gravitate towards movements like this, and so their stated grievances are just a front.”

    I would like to know your actual reasons for what convinced you that they’re not doing it for religious reasons, and not the post hoc explanations that you’ve found that you try to sell to other people.

    I am not convinced beyond all reasonable doubt that you are wrong, but I greatly fear this kind of reasoning. I fear it because if we wrongly understand the reasoning of our enemies, then we will take wrong actions in attempting to counter our enemies. I fear that you are horribly wrong concerning the motivations of our enemies.

    One particular point: As I said in a recent thread, I see this worrying trend of people in the west who are desperate to argue that people in ISIS are deranged thugs and moral monsters. I strongly suspect that this is not true, and it paints an entirely false narrative of the people in ISIS. Many people have this false estimation of humanity, and they believe that people are better than they really are. They don’t want to face facts that most people in ISIS are everyday normal people, and they probably do not have abnormal propensities towards violence. They are not monsters in any inherent sense. The Stanford prison experiment shows that most people will behave very badly in the wrong set of social conditions.

    Again, going back, I see that many people in the west who are desperate to argue that people in ISIS are somehow mentally impaired – “they are monsters and thugs” – anything in order to deflect blame from religion.

    No, I tentatively believe that many of these people are normal people who behave like monsters because of peer pressure and social circumstances, and specifically the religious components thereof. I think it is a gross factual error to dismiss them as merely monsters and thugs and emotionless robots as Marcus does.

    Further, many people accuse me of dehumanizing Muslims with my particular rhetoric, but I would argue that it’s actually people like Marcus who are the ones who are dehumanizing people with this rhetoric that ISIS members are mentally impaired, or are extraordinarily biologically prone to violent behavior, etc – anything but normal people with wrong-headed beliefs and bad peer pressure.

    And again, if we wrongly dehumanize our enemies in this way, then we will choose wrong tactics to fight them, which is more likely to make us fail.

  6. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    PS: I have no problems attributing a higher probability of actual sociopathy / psychopathy or other medical mental differences, disabilities, etc., to the leaders of ISIS. On my weak background information, I actually consider it likely. Specifically, people should look at the results of Snakes In Suits. However, this nothing more than a footnote in the explanation of the continued success of ISIS. This cannot explain the majority of members of ISIS, because the majority of the members of ISIS are very probably just normal people without particular mental differences, disabilities, etc. That’s the fact which needs explanation – what would attract so many otherwise normal people to an incredibly inhuman movement? It cannot be mere legitimate grievances about colonialism and installing dictators for oil. That happens in plenty of places without a rise of a movement that issues letters like this. It cannot be that a most / all of the members are sociopaths / psychopaths. In the end, I see only one plausible explanation:

    Steven Weinberg:
    > Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion.

    My addendum: But for good people to do evil things, that takes tribalistism, aka in-group out-group mentality, and religion is but one example. So is nationalism. So is being a fan of your favorite football team. Of course, religion is particularly pernicious because religion is a peer pressure system to adopt faith-based beliefs, and the abandonment of proper rational thinking that is embodied in faith-based belief systems much more readily lead to obscenely false and immoral beliefs compared to nationalism and being a fan of a football team.

  7. Monocle Smile says

    @EL
    I’m glad I read all of your posts.
    I think you have a good point. I mean, what would the people who want us to treat Mexican immigrants and Syrian refugees like animals be like if they had grown up in a more violent culture?

  8. nevilleneville says

    Well done, it is always a good idea to get the info from the horses mouth, so to speak. Ultimately though, the motivation for their actions is most likely the religion they follow, you know, the one based around the actions of a vile warlord who married a child. Enough said.

  9. John Daskal says

    It is interesting to note that the woman (Hasna Aitboulahcen) suicide bomber who blew herself up when the Police raided her location yesterday had no history of religious involvement and was pretty secular according to accounts thus far.

  10. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To be clear, I’m not saying it’s only religion that can cause this. I’m not saying that religion is an indispensible factor. I’m merely saying that religion appears to me IMO to be an important and noteworthy factor in this particular case. I also believe that other factors probably have comparable importance, including lack of education, lack of economic well-being, and some of the U.S.’s escapades in the area which is the source of real legitimate secular complaints. But again, I think it is very wrong-headed, perhaps even foolish, to argue that religion is just “social glue” as Marcus did above, and it seems to be wrong-headed, perhaps even foolish, to argue that most of the members of ISIS are somehow neurologically atypical, as Marcus did above.

    I also think it’s incredibly bigoted, short-sighted, not productive, and just inhuman to deny access to all possible refuges from the affected regions.

  11. John Daskal says

    Given the education level and family status of the 911 hijackers for example I question the lack of education and access to jobs issue as being that big of a factor. Their religion is the 800LB elephant in the room for sure. As for the refugees I largely agree. But I do think its pretty asinine and probably way more expensive to ship them off to Europe or half way around the world, separate them culturally, geographically and linguistically from their homelands instead of setting up safe zones in the region. Regardless of how we got here we are here and IMO ISIL is the 21st century version of the Nazi’s of the 1930’s. This is a military led fight but the ideological struggle must be won or it will never end.

  12. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To MS
    Thanks. It means a lot.

    To John
    I don’t know enough. I’m trying to be generous to my opponent in this discussion because I lack my normal confidence in making my points. Your arguments are at the very least interesting, and slightly compelling.

    I was having this discussion with someone else recently: The use of military is almost always a form of diplomacy. I mean that, and not in some obscure way. When you fight a war, you are almost always looking for a negotiated settlement, even if that’s a full surrender for you to dictate all terms. In other words, you’re using military force as a stick (of the proverbial carrot and stick) to bring the other side to the negotiating table, and to strengthen your position. The only other use of military power is total annihilation, genocide.

    I really have no idea what should be done and what can be done. Regarding Syria in particular, from what little I know, the entire place is now a clusterfuck because Russia seems to be siding quite clearly with Assad, and my incredibly ignorant belief is that approach will not stabilize Syria because most Syrians fucking hate Assad too much right now, and for good reason. Of course, I’m not sure what other approaches there might be. Maybe if we had Russia and China on board, plus all of the other local powers like Saudi Arabia and Iran, but that doesn’t seem like it’s going to happen. I’m really at a loss. I have no idea what the U.S. or European powers should do. The situation is a gigantic clusterfuck. I hope people more educated and smarter than myself have better ideas.

    What I would say is this: We need to reform the U.S. government and its foreign policy to stop fucking around and installing dictatorships and exploitive economic “agreements” with other countries. We need to especially become energy independent, with our own industry base, and otherwise economically independent, so we can always say “fuck you” to the rest of the world and go isolationist and let the rest of the world go to hell. Of course, I think we should offer help as best we can when we can, but in a situation like Syria and the middle east, I have no fucking idea.

    PS: Pet topic: And of course, the way to become energy independent is with a massive roll-out of nuclear, starting with conventional reactors like the AP-1000, and immediate R&D into the thorium molten salt reactor and the integral fast reactor of Argonne National Labs, and any other promising fuel-efficient, safe, cheap, and proliferation resistant designs. Plus something for transportation fuel. There, the best hope IMHO is the recent U.S. navy work using electricity (and/or high temp heat) to transform seawater into gasoline. It’s been done at lab scale only, and I know far less about the technical details, and I’m far less confident that it can scale compared to my confidence in IFR and LFTR. Voila, global warming and energy security and energy independence solved.

  13. says

    I would like to know your actual reasons for what convinced you that they’re not doing it for religious reasons, and not the post hoc explanations that you’ve found that you try to sell to other people.

    You say “post hoc” as if it’s unreasonable for someone to examine a situation, hypothesize a few things that may be going on, and then cross-check observation against hypothesis to see if it’s not contradictory. When dealing with things like people’s motivations that’s the only way that works, really – you listen to what they say, look at what’s going on, explore their possible motives, and see if what they’re saying matches what they appear to be doing. You appear to be dismissing any assessment of someone else’s behavior that’s not predictable a priori based on some kind of unimaginable theory of action? Not only is it intuitively obvious that people sometimes do things for other reasons than they claim, there’s a lot of experimental results that indicate it, as well – it’s just one of the reasons social scientists (the competent ones) tend to shy away from self-reported behaviors.

    I’m absolutely not saying that religion is not a component of what’s going on with ISIS. I was careful to continue to inject that as a possible motivation whenever I was throwing out possibilities. I’m completely willing to accept that there are plenty (perhaps even a majority!) of ISIS who are true believers in something religious. But if you’re going to say anything about ISIS’ motivations – as a group – it’s your task to map out the degree to which the stated beliefs ot the true believers are what motivates the collective action. That’s a great big problem when you remember that usually the beliefs of leaders has a much greater impact than the beliefs of the rank and file. If you’re willing (you ought to) assume that political leaders are willing and able to lie or exaggerate, then you’ve got absolutely no basis whatsoever to impute religious motivations to the leaders. Or any motivations, at all, really. Then you’re left only with actions. And the actions are predominantly political, not religious.

    I am not convinced beyond all reasonable doubt that you are wrong, but I greatly fear this kind of reasoning. I fear it because if we wrongly understand the reasoning of our enemies, then we will take wrong actions in attempting to counter our enemies. I fear that you are horribly wrong concerning the motivations of our enemies.

    I’m not saying anything about ISIS’ motivations. I’m saying that talking about ISIS’ motivations is a fool’s errand.

    I nearly sprained by eyeballs at your strategic sense. Because, while I am proposing to understand ISIS in terms of its actions and not any stated beliefs, you appear to be proposing to establish strategy based on self-reported information from a declared enemy. Haven’t you ever heard the expression “actions speak louder than words”? You’re trying to pretend to be rational and skeptical, yet you appear to be prepared to accept a declared enemy’s published intent. Oh, good. And let me guess: you probably wonder why ‘the west’ is having trouble coping with ISIS.

    You may want to think of this as a problem in strategic intelligence, not skepticism. The dialogue we’re having here is a case study in why intelligence officers grade the information they get differently based on its source: internal communications not for publication are treated as more authoritative than publicity briefs. You believe what someone writes in a private journal in preference to what they write in a blog. If you’re a social scientist you also acknowledge that people lie to themselves in their private journals, too.

    If you want to know what ISIS is likely to do you’d want to look at Badgdadi’s private journal. Because his beliefs (whatever they are) are going to have greater effect on ISIS’ actions than any deeply held faith of any individual follower.

    I see this worrying trend of people in the west who are desperate to argue that people in ISIS are deranged thugs and moral monsters. I strongly suspect that this is not true, and it paints an entirely false narrative of the people in ISIS

    I think such discussions are absolutely pointless because the people in ISIS hold a fractally complex set of beliefs and are led by a cadre that hold a variety of beliefs and ideas. The idea that ISIS holds a belief, somehow, is an indicator of a complete failure to understand strategy.

    As I said earler, I’m pretty sure there are some thugs and moral monsters in ISIS. Such people tend to not be very good leaders or strategists because they tend to pursue more narrow agendas. A thug who wants personal power and is the type who claws his way to the top is easily manipulated because their motives are pretty clear, which makes them predictable. The violence-loving monsters are equally predictable: they exercise a sort of ‘peter principle’ and gravitate to where they can get their hands bloody and once they’re busy with that, they usually stop thinking about the big picture. Again, I repeat, an organization such as ISIS is comprised of a mix of such people, thugs, leaders, true believers, haters, wild-eyed followers, etc. What will move ISIS to act in certain ways is going to have more to do with the personal attitudes and beliefs of the leaders than the followers. Now, a fruitful conversation about whether the leaders are motivated by religion or political hate or opportunism – that might be revealing. But what the leaders say to the followers and what really motivates them: you will never know that.

    anything in order to deflect blame from religion.

    Wait, you’re the guy who was trying to imply that I was engaging in motivated reasoning? Because it seems to me that you’ve decided religion is to blame and you’re looking for confirmation of that.

    You can only claim that if you completely ignore the complex dynamics of group leadership.

    Let me try this another way:
    Was the French revolution inspired by hunger, anticlericalism, a desire for democracy, a desire for redistribution of wealth, or a quest for personal power by some of the Jacobins?
    The answer, judging from what happened, is “yes.”

    If you want to say “ISIS is motivated by religion” you have to show that the majority of the people who make decisions in ISIS are motivated by religion and are acting in concert. If you’re that politically naive you should stick with being skeptical about dowsing and simple stuff that don’t involve hidden group motivations, economics, and politics.

  14. says

    it’s actually people like Marcus who are the ones who are dehumanizing people with this rhetoric that ISIS members are mentally impaired, or are extraordinarily biologically prone to violent behavior, etc

    What the fuck words are you stuffing in my mouth? “People like Marcus”?? You quite clearly have no idea what Marcus believes and you have no business whatsoever using ‘being like Marcus’ to construct some kind of absurd straw-man to demonize.

    If I recall, the only ‘dehumanizing’ term I used was ‘thug’ and ‘sadist’. Sadism is a term of art and I used it carefully. I was referring to, specifically, the sadists who have been throwing people off buildings and lighting others on fire. The people who do that kind of thing do it because they want to; they enjoy it. That’s sadism 101 right there. ‘Thug’s a sloppier term (yeah you could go on about its evolution from thuggee…) so let me clarify: by “thug” I mean an authoritarian who is willing to use the threat of violence to get others to do what they want. That’s also clearly going on with ISIS. By my definition, the CIA are also thugs and sadists, FWIW.

    Seriously, though, that “people like Marcus” shit is seriously out of line. It’s sloppy.

  15. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    To Marcus

    What will move ISIS to act in certain ways is going to have more to do with the personal attitudes and beliefs of the leaders than the followers.

    I am highly dubious of this. Especially when ISIS survives by recruitment. I think that understanding the motivations of the individual members is incredibly important in combatting ISIS in the long term. I can agree that for short term military operations, it is less important. But as I said in another post, the purpose of military power is to reach a long-term negotiated settlement.

    But what the leaders say to the followers and what really motivates them: you will never know that.

    I do not accept this. We need to understand this in order to form an effective strategy. If we don’t know this in a guerilla war context, then our strategy may be doomed from the start. As I said in another post, every military action is really part of a larger diplomatic effort to reach a negotiated settlement. We need to know what sort of negotiated settlement the other side will accept, and with how much military pressure.

    Let me try this another way:
    Was the French revolution inspired by hunger, anticlericalism, a desire for democracy, a desire for redistribution of wealth, or a quest for personal power by some of the Jacobins?
    The answer, judging from what happened, is “yes.”

    If you want to say “ISIS is motivated by religion” you have to show that the majority of the people who make decisions in ISIS are motivated by religion and are acting in concert.

    I think I can agree to this.

    If I recall, the only ‘dehumanizing’ term I used was ‘thug’ and ‘sadist’. Sadism is a term of art and I used it carefully. I was referring to, specifically, the sadists who have been throwing people off buildings and lighting others on fire. The people who do that kind of thing do it because they want to; they enjoy it. That’s sadism 101 right there.

    You don’t understand my position. I believe that this is wrong-headed. I believe that there’s a significant likelihood that most of the people who are doing that in ISIS are not neurologically atypical in some way. I believe most of the suicide bombers are not neurologically atypical. I believe that they’re just normal people in the wrong set of social circumstances. Again, I believe the Stanford prison experiment shows this well. I believe that you are dehumanizing the people who are blowing themselves up in cafes, and “throwing people off buildings”, and “lighting others on fire”. It’s dehumanizing because you’re saying that they’re not normal people, and somehow less morally competent in some intrinsic way. I believe in this particular case you are not giving proper appreciation to what religion and simple peer pressure can accomplish. This right here IMHO is some wrong-headed tribalism and dehumanization.

  16. Monocle Smile says

    @Pierce
    From the article:

    There is no question that these prisoners I am interviewing are committed to Islam; it is just their own brand of Islam, only distantly related to that of the Islamic State. Similarly, Western fighters traveling to the Islamic State are also deeply committed, but it’s to their own idea of jihad rather than one based on sound theological arguments or even evidence from the Qur’an. As Saltman said, “Recruitment [of ISIS] plays upon desires of adventure, activism, romance, power, belonging, along with spiritual fulfillment.” That is, Islam plays a part, but not necessarily in the rigid, Salafi form demanded by the leadership of the Islamic State

    The subtitle is rather misleading. But the article is worth reading and provides some insight.
    It talks about how ISIS brings in people who have had exceptionally hard lives, very little direction and not much of a bright future. ISIS gives them purpose, and for people who have suffered thus, any cause will often do. I continue to side with EL on this, and I haven’t in the past.

  17. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    Quoting from above:

    but it’s to their own idea of jihad rather than one based on sound theological arguments or even evidence from the Qur’an.

    sound theological arguments

    Evidence #1 in favor of one of my positions in the thread. Let the game of “no true Scotsman” continue, plus a good healthy dose of sophisticated theological arguments, aka sophistry.

  18. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    From the article above:

    senior colleagues; […] Scott Atran

    Acott Atran is a bald-faced liar, or batshit insane – a religious apologist extraordinaire – so I would be cautious with the content of the article.

    However, the article and its conclusions seem entirely reasonable for the most part, except for the bit I quoted in the post above “no true Scotsman” and “sophisticated theological arguments”.

    I really wish the aftermath Iraq invasion was handled better. I wish they didn’t dismantle the state and ban Baathists from power. I wish the early days of bombing didn’t destroy large portions of economic infrastructure. I wish they didn’t put warlords in charge and instead had the Americans rule directly until proper elections could be put in place. I wish we didn’t do the whole thing so that Haliburton and Cheney et al could make away with mad amounts of oil and money at the expense of the American people.

  19. says

    Here’s the article I remember about one mastermind in ISIS:

    http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/islamic-state-files-show-structure-of-islamist-terror-group-a-1029274.html#spRedirectedFrom=www&referrrer=

    [For some reason freethoguhtblogs isn’t showing me the code stuff to help me make my own words into a link…]

    It sounds like a pyramid scheme of mortal fear and exploitation of random political/religious motivations. Anything to spread power. With so much deception, lack of trust, and concealment, I’d have to think more carefully before confidently reaching ultimate conclusions.

  20. says

    Read or talk to Majid Narwaz. he,s a former terrorist. It started with Iran,s colonization of Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Palestine, and Yeman. Their religious war against the Sunni radicalised the Sunni. The jihadis want to invade countries and turn them into Islamist caliphates. They are angry at the West for giving these countries weapons and defending them. This is stated over and over again in their letters and speeches.

  21. KsDevil says

    I suspect the answer will be all to human and all too ‘been there, done that’ as far as history is concerned.
    I’d just like to say that in order to perform the actions ISIS does, they first have to dehumanize themselves before dehumanizing others. And that may be a key to the solution.

  22. Russell Glasser says

    Heads up: I am in the process of reading through this entire letter and highlighting it , and I’ve asked Jeff to grant me an extra long time for this segment. There’s a lot of stuff to unpack in this rabbit hole. Don’t miss tomorrow’s episode!

  23. Logicked says

    Russell, look at the YouTube channels “Apollexis”, “Isaac Cohen”, and “Isaac Cohen2”. They’re all the same guy. He has quite a lot of ISIS material uploaded for commentary and journalistic purposes, and this includes sermons, videos of suicide bombers talking before they bomb, and comments from ISIS fighters. If you really want to go down the rabbit hole (and see some things that will scar you), ask him where he gets these videos from.