According to the website Memri.org, ISIS supporters celebrated Hurricane Harvey’s terrible destruction, and now they’re engaged in similar jubilation over the potential for more havoc to be caused by Irma.
Memri, a site that purports to monitor jihad and terrorist threats, says pro-ISIS users on social media are “eagerly awaiting the destruction” which Irma may cause.
Hurricane Irma, a Category 5 hurricane that has been called one of the strongest storms ever recorded in the Atlantic, hit the eastern Caribbean on Wednesday. It left a trail of destruction and wreaked havoc on the small island of Barbuda, damaging 95 percent of the buildings. The island is now described as “barely habitable.”
In their report, Memri demonstrated instances of ISIS supporters suggesting Irma is divine retribution against the U.S., including several screenshots to illustrate their point.
In one example, The Monotheist Page on Facebook shared a post by the Media Studies Center, confirming that Hurricane Irma will make U.S. landfall. Monotheist captions the post: “May Allah drown the enemies of Islam and force them into their knees subdued, and humiliated, defeated, and scattered!”
In another, a different post from the Media Studies Center was shared by The Monotheist Page, which captions it: “Made duaa [pray] tonight that Allah destroy them, and shake them, and restrain their might to heal the hearts of the Muslims bombed in Mosul, Raqqa, and elsewhere!”
On Instagram, a user going by the moniker “Stranger_Ghuruba38” hopes all U.S. cities are destroyed. The post reads: “Yallah Irma Yallah Ya Allah make their cities destroyed the same as Mosul, Raqqa, Al Bab, Fallujah, Tikrit, Baji, Ramadi and others Ya Allah punish them.”
Memri explains that some comments are referencing a desire that the storm will be a type of revenge against America for U.S.-led airstrikes that target the Islamic State.
On another site, called Telegram, the Media Today channel wrote: “Due to the threat of storm millions of people from Florida are displaced from their homes. O Crusaders! This is the reward of your crimes against Muslims. Do not forget it.”
On the same medium, the Al-Tasni Telegram channel shared a link to an article from The Washington Post. They captioned it: “Ya Allah they destroyed our cities Mosul & Raqqah Destroy them drown them annihilate them amin.”
In an example of the celebrations surrounding Harvey’s devastation, Memri sites a Sep. 1 post from a Facebook user named Joey Alsteel. He wrote: “Preliminary estimate losses of Hurricane Harvey, who beat the state of Texas #US rises to over $100 billion dollars. They spent 300 Billion to fight the Daesh [derogatory term for ISIS]. Now Allah the almighty is making them Rip what the sow….Ameen..”
The U.S. is preparing for Hurricane Irma to make landfall, with evacuations in Florida started yesterday. The storm should make landfall this week.
According to an update on Thursday, a storm surge watch was in effect for the Florida peninsula and the Florida Keys, while a hurricane warning was issued for the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Southeastern Bahamas, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and the Central and Northwestern Bahamas.
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