In the first part we examined the structure of the data provided by the “Mobile Detachment” (Fariq jawwal al-ansar, FJA) media department of the Ansar al-Mujahideen Forum. As stated, in the second part we will take a closer look at the ‘mission statement‘ to understand the ambition of (re-) publishing indoctrinating jihadist materials with the intention of users being able to consume and disseminate this content by the means of one’s personal smart phone. One intention perhaps is the fact that your smart/mobile phone certainly is a highly personal gadget, which is rarely shared – unlike family household computers. The content on your mobile phone has a more private nature and allows you to quickly navigate and read through the jihadist materials without anyone noticing. The downside for jihadis, however, is an upside for the police, as the sympathizers are inspired to store incriminating content on their personal phones. That is probably the reason for including encryption software in the first data-package.
The Mission Statement
The FJA defines four sub-detachments in a posting that can be understood as a ‘mission statement’. A regular posting announced a “specialized detachment / unit (fariq) in the crafting and dissemination of all content, intended to run on mobile phones. The content [includes] knowledge (‘ilm), incitement (tahrid) and missionary work (da’wa) issued under the sponsorship of the Ansar al-Mujahideen forum’s administration.” The basic line is brokered into four simple categories, with the call of seeking support by any capable sympathizer within the forum:
1. “The fariq of audio-engineering: Engineering and dissemination of audio fragments of speeches and sermons given by the scholars and leaders. This includes recitations [of the Quran], poems, songs and other formats.
2. The fariq for transcripts: Selection, transcribing and publication of jihadist magazines, affecting stories, unique articles and the most important statements in a visible format or by any format that mobile phones support.
3. The fariq for designing propaganda pictures [‘Photoshop-Jihad’, examples here]: The design and dissemination of jihadi pictures and unique styling of any format supported by mobile phones.
4. The fariq of conversion and upload: The conversion of jihadist movies into any format supported by mobile phones [mostly 3GP] and by uploading parts [of the conversed videos].”
With the mobile phone turned to Jihad, each and any sympathizer can assume an active role in trying to disseminate jihadi content via Bluetooth to other devices. The goal is clearly described as “disseminating the jihadis’ mindset by the means of mobile phones (…) as well as developing the propaganda.” The fundamental principle of the FJA is to simply promote and spread chosen materials of jihad by all means. In this case, the modus operandi is sought that sympathizers are enabled by these data-packages to check their individual surrounding for Bluetooth enabled devices and hence blindly send out these catchy materials to unwary (primarily Arab) users. In some Arab countries, due to the harsh enforced segregation of the sexes, communicating and setting up ‘secret dates’ has mainly turned to the use of modern technology. AQ in its never-ending endeavor is also always keen to capitalize on newest technology.
As described in the mission statement, “the jihadi forums rise up for the firebrand assaults and oppose the enemies of God, of His messenger, and of the believers with their hopeless attempt to wage war [against us] with our judiciary efforts by such means. These have progressed – slowly but surely –, all praise be God, with the development of the propaganda and by technical aspects. And this is the benefit of God. That’s what the brigades and media groups are about, who convey the methodology (manhaj) and the fundamentals of faith (aqida) of the pious Salafists.”
The FJA considers itself as yet another platform to disseminate, proselytize and hence protect the true version of religion. “What else are these projects than an answer to our noble scholars, stressing the need to develop the jihadi media.” The FJA concludes with the call to “thus help your brothers by whatever means you can” in order to counter any attempts of countering the jihadi narratives and by using every possibility.