The Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) has developed a significant volume of propaganda as they extend their caliphate through Iraq and Syria, based both on their military prowess and attempts to depict their civilians as living the good life. A tourism brochure advertising the alleged high quality of life in Mosul, Iraq is their latest effort to entice the world to join them.
The pictures in the brochure are from Iraq’s second largest city, in Nineveh province. Militants captured the city in June. They expelled or murdered the entire Christian population. For the first time in 2,000 years, there are no Christians in the historic city. However, the militants chose pictures that show life in Mosul is normal. From The Daily Mail:
Images of the Mosul marketplace show pizzas and succulent burgers being cooked amid bustling stalls packed with all manner of sweet treats and toys for children.
Men are seen browsing the stalls nonchalantly, seemingly oblivious to the fact the city is an ISIS stronghold and on the frontline of the Iraqi regime’s freshly launched fightback against the terrorists.
Trays of sweet baklava give a sense of abundance in the crisis-hit city, which is considered key to ISIS presence in Iraq thanks to the millions of pounds generated each day from the militant-held oil fields dotted around Nineveh province.
Militants chose to caption the pictures with “Wish you were here,” which is taken from the British show hosted by Judith Chalmers.
In January, the terrorist group released a similar propaganda video that featured British hostage John Cantlie. The video, titled “Inside Mosul,” also portrayed life in Mosul “as business as usual.” He said that Muslims can finally walk the streets without fear of oppression, even though Muslims and Christians lived peacefully among each other for over 2,000 years.
“It’s not a city living in fear as Western media would have you believe,” he said. “It’s just a normal city going about its daily business.”
In February, the Islamic State used Cantlie in a propaganda video for Aleppo, Syria. The terrorists also attempted to portray the city “as functional and productive under its control.” However, Cantlie said this video is the last in his series. The militant group did not comment on the video or release any information as to whether Cantlie is still alive.