A new propaganda video from the so-called Islamic State (ISIS) criticizes U.S. President Donald Trump’s “war against Islam” and encourages its supporters in the United States to take advantage of the country’s lax gun laws and carry out mass shootings.
In the four-minute video released Wednesday, a one-legged ISIS fighter, identified as “Abu Salih al-Amriki” or Abu Salih the American, delivered the message in English and addressed Trump and his Islamophobia directly.
“You entered into the White House on the back of your crusader rhetoric, and which the fake media has pressured you to tone down,” he said. “Your fangs and hatred towards Islam has already been revealed, oh dog of Rome.”
“Your war against Islam has only made your homeland more vulnerable and your society cracking into chaos,” he added.
“Take advantage of the fact that you can easily obtain a rifle or a pistol in America,” the fighter says to the militant group’s presumed supporters. “Spray the kuffar [infidels] with bullets so that their fear of the Muslims rises and they continue to reveal their hatred towards Islam.”
As the Washington Post reports, the video is part of a series ISIS calls “Inside the Caliphate,” which features various militants encouraging attacks. A copy of Wednesday’s video was published by the SITE Intelligence Group.
In response to the video, a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) spokesperson told the Post that the federal agency “is aware of numerous online terrorist threats.”
It’s not clear where or when the video was recorded, but lax U.S. gun laws are nothing new.
The Gun Violence Archive has tracked 341 mass shootings — where four or more people were killed or injured — across the country this year alone. There have been more than 60,000 incidents of gun violence overall, killing more than 15,000 people.
In October, a deadly mass shooting at a Las Vegas concert left 59 people dead and more than 500 injured. It was one of the worst shootings in recent history and the seventh mass shooting that week. Still, federal lawmakers failed to act on meaningful gun reform.
The Vegas shooter carried out the attack with the help of bump stocks, a device that enables semi-automatic guns to fire at the rate of an automatic weapon, or up to 800 rounds per minute. Legislation to ban bump stocks was introduced in Congress with bipartisan co-sponsors, and even the National Rifle Association (NRA) expressed (caveated) support. Still, that wasn’t enough.
As ThinkProgress’ Addy Baird reported three weeks after the shooting, interest in gun control legislation quickly faded.
A bump stock ban — or, at the very least, a revised version of the bill restricting bump stock sales that may have come out of committee — should have been a layup. It’s the lowest legislative bar Congress has set for itself in the wake of the spate of deadly mass shootings the country’s seen over the last decade.
Counterterrorism experts know that U.S. gun laws are an issue. Nicholas Rasmussen, the outgoing director of the National Counterterrorism Center, told reporters that the country’s gun laws are undermining national security, according to the Post.
“We find ourselves in a more dangerous situation because our population of violent extremists has no difficulty gaining access to weapons that are quite lethal,” he said. “I wish that weren’t so.”