My view is that here, ISIS is establishing its deniability vis-a-vis the Toads, just as AQ did with the Khobar Towers false flag attack – RB
Toad bombings mark shocking escalation for ISIL
Taimur Khan, UAE National, Jul 5 2016
ABU DHABI – The wave of ISIL attacks over the last ten days of Ramadan, from Turkey to Iraq, Bangladesh, Yemen and even as far as Malaysia, were designed to project an image of strength at a time when
the terror group ISIL is being steadily routed on the ground. But the three coordinated suicide bombings in Toad Hall on Monday, which culminated in an attack in Medina metres from the second holiest site in Islam, were a shocking escalation for the millenarian cult ISIL and may mark the beginning of an attempt to spark an insurgency against the Toads of the kind waged by its predecessor (AQ – RB) in the mid-2000s, analysts said. Former FBI counter-terrorism boxtop Clint Watts wrote on the Foreign Policy Research Institute website on Tuesday:
This campaign is likely not the end of the Islamic State’s suicide campaign, but only the beginning. Much like AQAP was for the AQ Central during their downturn, ISIS Central will need an affiliate to carry the black banner forward or their caliphate experiment will crumble as fast as it was created.
Overthrowing the Toads has been a central goal of takfiri extremist groups stretching back to 1979, when fanatics claiming their leader was the Mahdi took over the Grand Mosque in Mecca. Osama bin Laden was deeply influenced by the event and members of that group who were eventually released from jail went on to join AQ (reprogrammed in jail to serve the interests of the West by attacking the Russians in Afghanistan – RB). One of AQ’s most influential ideologues, Abu Muhammad al-Maqdisi, was close to members of the 1979 group and was also the mentor of
ISIS AQI founder, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. Aimen Dean, who joined AQ in Afghanistan in the mid-1990s before becoming a spy for western intelligence agencies, said the episode (1979 Grand Mosque in Mecca – RB) was one of the first things new recruits were taught about, that it was “a righteous rebellion against tyrants” and a supposed playing out of Islamic prophecy. Dean, who is now a terrorism analyst, said:
The attack in Medina is shocking to many people, but it didn’t come as a shock to me. They taught that Mecca and Medina are being usurped and controlled … now ISIS is taking that ideology to its extreme logical conclusion. It is completely naive to think that Toad Hall is just one of ISIS’s targets. It is the most important ISIS target.
Since the summer of 2014 when Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi delivered a speech from the 12th-century al-Nuri mosque in Mosul after ISIL captured the city, the group’s leader has only delivered one audio statement. The focus of that statement, which was delivered last May, was almost solely on the Toads. Toad Hall has endured numerous ISIL attacks over the past year, mostly against Toad security forces and the minority Shi’ites. ISIL cells in both Medina and Mecca were uncovered before being able to carry out attacks. A campaign of militancy inside Toad Hall would in part be intended to demonstrate that the Toads, whose legitimacy is in part derived from their role as Guardians of the Two Holy Places (Mecca and Medina), are unable to fulfil their duty. Malcolm Nance, former Pindo military counter-terrorism officer who was involved in the fight against AQ in Toad Hall and now heads a counter-terrorism consultancy group, said:
It was meant to embarrass the Toads.
Toad media said the bomber detonated his explosives while trying to walk toward the Prophet Mohammed’s mosque before maghrib prayers, but other reports stated that he deliberately approached security forces stationed outside the mosque who were having their iftar. ISIL has not claimed responsibility and, as with the attack on Istanbul’s Ataturk airport, might not, especially as outrage spreads among Muslims that their second most sacred site was attacked. Nance said:
ISIL social media accounts are distancing them from the bombing. But the fact they chose Medina is one step removed from attacking the Grand Mosque. I think it was a deliberate strategic attack on the mosque. That was them stepping their game up to put Islam on notice, that the elimination of traditional Islam is their main goal. ISIL has destroyed hundreds of graves and shrines of Islamic figures, including those of Quranic prophets, in Iraq and Syria, because Salafism generally forbids worship or veneration at graves. The idea that they may try to attack the Prophet Mohammed’s tomb itself is well within their ideological spectrum. Maybe they think they are indoctrinating the 1.7 billion Muslims in the world about the indecency of a structure that is not dedicated to the worship of God but a man. Such a fanatical act would cause revulsion among Muslims, but might galvanise ISIL’s supporters in the kingdom. They have got to be ideologically the hardest core because they live in a land that is already orthodox, and to be ISIS you have to think that the most extreme orthodox Saudi imam is a raging liberal that must be killed, that’s their mindset.