To the scene of the budding Islamic Caliphate in Northern Iraq, near the Syrian border, where an unexpected threat has suddenly arisen against the
headline-making attempts by ISIL (the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) to set up a new headquarters; that base from which their collective
would claim religious authority over every Muslim in the world, harnessing enough power to overcome the resistance of local armies, US domination
and international allied posturing.
“You can’t reason with those young whippersnappers, they’re all hopped up on Allah and testosterone.” Al-Qaida’s local leader in the area, Ayman Al-Zawakiri, told Home Defence earlier, his frustration at their behaviour all-too evident. “We’ve been playing the Middle East long game for decades, working toward an Islamic caliphate built on strong foundations which would last for hundreds of thousands of years. All my brave brothers in arms share the belief we were getting there, no bother – it was completely in hand.”
“Then the Americans pull out of Iraq and these newcomers steamroller through like a bunch of numpties, killing everyone they can find and getting the world’s attention
as if they’re some hot new jihadist movement!” Al-Zawakiri spat. “I’d like to see these numbskulls execute a terrorist action on the scale of 9/11. That kind of thing
takes skill, chutzpah and most of all good planning.” Ayman asserted, adding, “Any idiot can film a beheading.”
When asked whether those ISIL founders he condemns hadn’t once been his beloved comrades in arms, back when every
Iraq-baed jihadi was focussed on attacking the occupying Americans, Ayman (right) grew coy.
“Al-Qaida saw everyone as on the same side back in the day, it’s true.” Al-Zawakiri clarified. “I hold my hands up - that was our
bad. Me and the other Al-Qaidas soon realised our mistake when we started getting in arguments over the bloody death of civilians. Say what you like about our blokes, but we only
wanted spectacular atrocities to make our point and leave the majority alive but terrified. These fucks won’t be satisfied until everyone is enslaved or dead, including all the women.
That’s no way to run a Holy War.”
“You can’t reason with them though.” Ayman (right) concluded. “We might be mass murderers, bent on endorsing a brutally-skewed, medieval theology based on a misreading of the Koran, but you’ve got to draw the line
somewhere. Those fellows are just nasty.”
Mr Al-Zawakiri was then interrupted by a telephone call from one of his lieutenants and HDUK subsequently heard him joke in the background:
“What do we even call them if we ‘negotiate’ Ahmed? Separatists? Islamic State? ISIS? It’s beyond a joke – they are teenagers who cannot settle on a name for their infidel punk-pop
band…..” Al-Zawakiri then adopted the high-pitched tones of an adolescent to squeal: ‘Anyone who doesn’t agree with us precisely must die, nur-nur-nur…’ Much to the apparent
amusement of the gentleman on the other end of the line.
Indeed, that group of extremists now calling themselves ISIL emerged from Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood at the same time as Al-Qaida late last century, uniting with the latter to support the 2004 Iraq insurgency against allied forces. But as the brutal intractability and tendency to keep their headphones on when a superior was making a key speech became more apparent, ISIL were given the cold shoulder and split from the core group in 2011 to form an independent movement. All ties were eventually cut three years later after an internal power struggle, rumoured to have been triggered by poor personal hygiene on the part of the younger men and arguments over which way Mecca was.
International observers initially dismissed their new convocation as ‘nothing more than an ‘Al-Qaida side project’, but in late 2014 it has become increasingly clear ISIL could be the
Foo Fighters to Al-Qaida’s Nirvana; where a parent group have been weakened by the loss of their figurehead a more popular act rises from the ashes. And with an estimated eighty
thousand fighters across the region, all greatly skilled in guerrilla warfare, ISIL has become a force to be reckoned with. Their love of cutting edge propaganda has seen these jihadis
disseminating digital chants, execution DVDs with numerous ‘extras’, hashtag campaigns of hate and digital fanzines-slash-vlogs while putting on recruitment ‘open days’ across the
region. It seems the ISIL leaders are now justified in describing their collective as “less an underground movement hiding in fortified compounds, and more like an army.”
Such a view was reinforced in audio files received this week by the western press. In them an ISIL leader disparages his Al-Qaida rivals, saying “they won’t be allowed anywhere
near our brilliant caliphate when it’s finished”, adding that the time of men like Al-Zawakiri has gone “so piss off grand-dad”. The anonymous speaker then goes on to accuse the leader of Al-Nusra (Al-Qaida’s operation in
Syria) of backing US policy, being lost without the guidance of Bin Laden and “not even having a Twitter account”. There then follows a digression on Islamic terror, and
how Al-Qaida amounts to no more than “a few old blokes trying to keep the flame of myth alive. Didn’t you see ‘The Power of Nightmares’? There’s nothing behind their
In response, Al-Nusra issued a statement claiming ISIL don’t have a clue what they’re doing, saying the holy books have never endorsed “pushing for brand recognition” or
being “hungry for column inches” and describe ISIL as a ‘fad’ or a ‘flash in the pan’ which will undo decades of hard work with their publicity-seeking and antagonisation of
the great Satan, “who are already airstriking the fuck out of you, from what we’ve seen”.
In return, ISIL describe Al-Qaida as “whiny little bitches” on several Islamic message boards, adding: “Al-Zawakiri ordered us to disband last year – how’s that going for you, you jumped-up
Such petty bickering seems destined to continue, much to the frustration of the majority of extremist rebels, anti-government forces and potential suicide bombers in the Middle East, one of
whom agreed to speak to Home Defence on condition of anonymity.
“In all honestly, I’m starting to lose faith in them. How’s an honest but unaffiliated jihadi supposed to find his place in the Promised Land if those in charge won’t stop arguing and focus
their efforts on our common enemy?” The extremist (right) told us down a crackly phone line. “If they put half as much energy into establishing a caliphate as they do into insulting everyone
else’s interpretation of Islam, or contradicting each other on the recruitment of foreign fighters, we might have a base in Syria by now, and even be looking to expand across Jordan and
“It’s just petty; the claims and counter-claims about who honours Allah the best. ISIL and Al-Qaida are like petty fishwives.” The jihadist went on, sounding aggrieved. “I could get hit
by a drone strike and give my life for the cause any day now, and if they don’t sort it out, how am I supposed to guarantee the right allocation of virgins in the afterlife? Someone
needs to think about these things.”
“They should take a leaf from those Boko Harum guys – they’ve established an Islamic caliphate and the west hasn’t even noticed. He’s a smooth operator, that Nigerian jihadi,
although I suppose they are based in Africa and there isn’t much oil.” The terrorist went on, to the sound of US fighter planes in the background. “We need to learn some lessons
from their achievements and work to achieve our goals in harmony. ISIL; Al-Qaida; whoever. I, for one, believe we’re truly better together.”