Exclusive to Dateline: Atlantis. [Warning: if you are not ready for humour, go here first].
Leaked transcripts from the interrogation of a recently defected Islamic State fighter have shed light on the covert tactics employed by the Islamist extremist group in Europe. The defector revealed that ISIS leadership hatched a plan to bankroll recently unseated Greek MP Rachel Makri in a bid to return her to mainstream politics, among a number of hand-picked extremist politicians to be used as weapons in a secret propaganda war.
The source claims to have been present at a meeting of a secret ISIS taskforce where the plan was discussed. Makri was one among several candidates discussed. ISIS commanders reviewed her cv, noting that she was first elected to the Greek parliament with far-right party ANEL (Independent Greeks), before being expelled for voting against the party line, and eventually bonding with Syriza amazon and former parliamentary Speaker Zoi Konstantopoulou over protests at the closure of state broadcaster ERT. Propaganda chiefs discussed how her alliance with Zoi led her to join Syriza, and subsequently hard-left Syriza breakaway party Popular Unity in a suicidal bid to get re-elected in September 2015. When her bid failed, she announced her retirement from politics and her intention to spend more time scuba diving with her friends in the Greek Special Forces. ISIS’s digital marketing gurus also analysed her social media footprint, and were reportedly impressed by her ability to generate prodigious volumes of internet traffic as well as mainstream media coverage by aggressively disseminating a broad range of conspiracy theories, urban myths and half-baked opinions.
According to the source, ISIS chiefs were at first so taken with Makri’s love of soldiering skills, social media prowess and ability to switch seamlessly between mutually contradictory ideologies with unabated zeal, that they considered converting her to the jihadi cause. However their internal polling unit found that the brothers were more strongly incentivised by Bethnal Green schoolgirl brides, while the post of senior female social media recruiter was ably filled by existing “black widows” with stronger islamist credentials. It was then that the plan to harness Makri’s natural communication skills in the cause of the global caliphate was hatched, and the ISIS propaganda unit was formed.
The purpose of the unit is to provide covert support for extremist elements within western states in order to polarise popular opinion against Islam in all its forms and to stoke anti-refugee sentiment, thus creating a fertile recruiting ground for its forces, and ultimately bringing about the collapse of the West. Experts note that disinformation on all sides is crucial to this type of campaign, and therefore political alignment is less important than the ability to propagate half-baked rumour, conspiracy and innuendo with absolute conviction. Certainly, a campaigner for islamist world domination could not wish for a more willing dupe than Makri in a key gateway country to Europe, where it now appears that at least one passport found at a scene of the attack passed through en route to Paris. It did not go unnoticed among the ISIS task force that her former boss, Panos Kammenos of ANEL, had once threatened to flood Europe with migrants and jihadis if Greece were forced out of the EU – this they took to be an excellent example of the explosive factional dynamic that they wish to create among the infidels. The informant quoted one ISIS leader as saying, “this is genius, if Rachel didn’t exist we would have to invent her – and that would cost us a fortune in PR consulting fees”.
ISIS, with a robust economy funded by the illegal sale of oil and antiquities, is in a much better position to bankroll political campaigns than traditional funding sources in cash-strapped Greece or indeed other western nations with stronger controls on political funding. It is believed to have established a secret “black fund” specifically for that purpose. The first tranche of funding was to be presented to Makri as an anonymous donation handed to her by a female jihadi posing as an Orthodox nun.
Makri’s return to the political scene was announced in a series of tweets and Facebook postings commenting on Friday’s terrorist attacks in Paris:
[Translation: “They do not hesitate to sacrifice innocent people to execute their monstrous plans. Very convenient for Hollande and Obama the two people who are responsible for the destabilisation of the Middle East and the wars for arms sales. Those who nurture the tsihadists (sic) arm them and use them for the destabilisation and destruction of countries and peoples. And of course they have found a way to stop the flows of refugees that they led to become refugees.” – original post no longer available, but several in the same vein are].
Makri’s sub-Chomskian pronouncements align her neatly with Syrian President Assad, and are also rumoured to have made her a pin-up for the hardline clerical faction in Iran. The former ISIS source also shed light on a ditched propaganda plan in connection with the attacks, which would have seen ISIS leak a fraudulent “Memo to all Jewish metalhedz” to make alternative plans for last Friday night; however, it appears that this plan was abandoned on the grounds that “not even the Greeks would fall for that”. The Greek social media reaction to the attacks suggests that that decision may have been too hasty.
After using minor “fringe” politicians as a testing ground, security experts believe that ISIS plan to “supersize it” by moving on to more mainstream targets (including “alternative” media, opportunist Greek former ministers and European heads of state), the ultimate prize being the Front National’s Marine Le Pen, who is already responding according to script, but “could always use more encouragement” in the view of one senior ISIS commander quoted by the defector. The Islamists harbour dreams not only of funding the front-runner in the French presidential elections, but also, according to the confidential source, producing a “hot Nazi-on-Nazi sex tape” featuring female stars of the European extremes engaging in filthy haram activities, a secret aspiration of many of the western-bred leaders of ISIS, and reportedly the dying wish of “Jihadi John”.
Stories, tweets and Facebook posts linked to or reproduced are genuine. Everything in between is a fabrication. The sentiment is genuine. The message is serious and it is this:
Rachel Makri and every opportunist idiot who jumps on the bandwagon to score political points even as events are unfolding are doing the terrorists’ work for them (and worse than is imagined in the scenario above, they are doing it for free). ISIS have a very sophisticated understanding of how social media work. They know that a moronic post using the #Paris, #ParisAttacks and similar hashtags on Friday night would be seen by friends and relatives searching for loved ones and add to their distress. Beyond the social media bubble, a key objective ISIS’s terror campaign in the west is to polarise, confuse and divide western society, and provoke the kind of knee-jerk reactions against Islam and muslims that ultimately justify their waging of a global “holy war”. If this also results in the persecution of refugees fleeing ISIS strongholds, so much the better – it only demonstrates the West’s inhumanity compared to the welcoming bosom of the caliphate. Again, there are many useful idiots in more influential positions than Rachel to do their bidding gratis.
Image from Huffington Post.