ISIS Head Makes First Video Appearance
A few days ago we reported that the blitz surge of the "cool", social network-friendly faction of Al-Qaeda known as ISIS, which over the past week went so far as to declare the formation of its own sovereign state, the Islamic State on the territory of Iraq and Syria, has so irked not only the conventional enemies of extremist fundamentalist Islam but also none other than al-Qaeda itself, which as we explained before may be forced to go to war against ISIS in order to preserve its waning relevance, status and credibility.
At the center of this rapid and dramatic ascent by a group virtually nobody had heard of as recently as a month ago is a man called Aby Bakr al-Baghdadi, who unlike the leaders of al-Qaeda, has kept an extremely low profile despite his recent appointment as "caliph" by the jihadists.
As BBC reports, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of Islamist militant group Isis, has called on Muslims to obey him, in his first video sermon. The video appears to have been filmed on Friday during a sermon at the al-Nouri Mosque in Mosul, northern Iraq. It surfaced on Saturday amid reports that he had been killed or wounded in an Iraqi air raid.
The release is notable because the reclusive militant leader has never appeared on video before, although there are photographs of him.
In the sermon, at Mosul's most famous landmark, Baghdadi praised the establishment of the "Islamic state", which was declared by Isis last Sunday.
"Appointing a leader is an obligation on Muslims, and one that has been neglected for decades," he said.
He also said that he did not seek out the position of being the caliph, or leader, calling it a "burden". "I am your leader, though I am not the best of you, so if you see that I am right, support me, and if you see that I am wrong, advise me," he told worshippers.
In other words, his first video was merely an ideological and emotional appeal to Muslims everywhere to side with him. It remains to be seen if Baghdadi will transform into just another typical Muslim blaming the sorry economic state of his country on Bush, something al Qaeda and others have done before him.
For those curious to see Baghdadi's complete video appearance, it is shown below in its entirety.
Baghdadi's full speech, translated courtesy of Francois Gatete, is below.
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