The feature image.  I hope it got your attention, because it caught mine.  Just like this bold text has hopefully done.  Take another look.  The clear yet powerful background image, positioned cleanly behind simple and emotionally strong language:

We Are All ISIS.  

There is a twisted appeal to the image – one that is both aesthetically attractive but also emotionally compelling.

And that should scare us all.

While much simpler than a visually stimulating ISIS propaganda image, a bold text – when used correctly against a generic one – can create an almost aesthetically appealing and compelling emphasis on the viewer.  Why the seemingly arbitrary commentary on bold text?

Because it provides a not-so-perfect but simple analogy as to how ISIS has emphasized various propaganda outlets such as social media, online messaging, and visual propaganda to inspire thousands of foreigners to flock to the war-torn battlefields of Syria and Iraq, in support of the global jihadist movement.

Like a bold text, ISIS propaganda masters are able to use visual and aesthetic material (among other brands and forms of communication, as SOFREP has previously reported regarding terror groups’ use of Twitter) to emphasize “themes of individual duty, unity, and Islamic resistance” – all of which are assessed as contributing to the unprecedented number of foreign fighters surging into ISIS’ bloodthirsty ranks.

ISIS hero shot, courtesy of
ISIS hero shot, courtesy of

Enter the analysis of this practice, courtesy of the University of Maryland’s START Consortium, which SOFREP has previously provided as an excellent resource for information, research, and analysis on terrorism.

While perusing some recent coverage of the day’s latest shitshow in the greater Syria region, I came across the following gem, which analyzes foreign fighters’ use of social media and mobile apps to “recruit aspirational supporters in the West…[ultimately creating] a paradigm shift within the global jihadist movement.”  That is to say, the old organizational model of Al-Qaeda has been thrown out and replaced by a bloodthirsty movement that knows no organizational structure: ISIS.