Normally we at The Hearing Blog shy away from world events; however this development is so dangerous — and cuts across all party lines — that we had to bring it to the attention of our Readers, to bring out several salient points not in the news reports so far.
The ISIS video is cryptically titled “From Who Excused [sic] To Those Not Excused,” saying that for Muslims in the west, deafness is no excuse for not waging jihad. According to Al Arabiya News, it shows the two Deaf men directing traffic in the northern Iraq city of Mosul while heavily armed, and includes the group’s now-familiar threats of destruction against America, Britain, and Europe. In the five minute clip, the two men speak in sign language with English and Arabic subtitles and refer to ISIS as the “Islamic State.”
Said one brother, “I am a deaf mute who works in the traffic police in the Islamic State with my brother Abu Abdur-Rahman.” The pair, dressed in all black with ammunition pouches and rifles, add that they wish to “slaughter” their enemies, including America, France and Britain. The pair ends the video by wiring and launching two rockets, which they claim are aimed at nearby Kurdish Peshmerga fighters.
Several things stand out in the video that are important to the hearing impaired community and those who serve them that have not been discussed in the mainstream press that we call to your attention:
First, ISIS recruiters prey on disaffected Westerners who feel “left out” in society, much like gangs offering a sense of “belonging,” in this case trying to ensnare Muslim Deaf Cult(ure) members into their own cult of violent jihad against Westerners. To learm much more about this, our readers are directed to the well-researched What ISIS Really Wants, by Graeme Wood in The Atlantic, as it goes beyond the scope of this blog.
Another thing that caught our eye is the sophistication of their recruiting tactics: Not only is this a commercial quality video, in fact it is even captioned in English as well as Arabic — These terrorists know their audience well, know precisely how to reach it, and add to their allure with this well-thought out touch.
Here is the 70 second abbreviated video posted on YouTube:
According to Alex Kassirer, a researcher at global security firm Flashpoint Intelligence, the video “represents an attempt by the group to recruit other physically or otherwise impaired individuals, as well as demonstrates the multifaceted responsibilities of those in its ranks, …even traffic police in the Islamic State have a dual functionality, also serving in military roles.”
Here is the entire 5+ minute video courtesy of Archive.org
You can reach author Dan Schwartz at Dan@Snip.Net ~