The latest Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) propaganda video purportedly shows the terror group training for combat against the Taliban in Afghanistan, concluding with the bloody execution of a captive, as many ISIS videos do.
“In the footage, released by ISIS’s slick propaganda machine, men in desert combat gear and masks are seen drilling with rifles and engaging in hand-to-hand combat at a camp in the war-ravaged country,” writes the UK Mirror.
The jihadis show off martial-arts techniques, demonstrate their toughness by lying in a row while their trainer drives a motorcycle over their stomachs, train in house-clearing tactics, huddle around the black flag for a pep talk, and march around the Afghan mountains.
For the grand finale (not shown in the video edit above) they drag an orange-jumpsuited prisoner out of a car and execute him with a pistol. Unlike many ISIS snuff films, this particular prisoner makes a last-ditch effort to run away, but he is unsuccessful.
ISIS has been trying to muscle in on the resurgent Taliban, which now holds sway over roughly a third of Afghanistan. Hundreds of fighters have reportedly been killed in clashes between the two Islamist forces.
Although there have been reports of Taliban switching allegiance and swearing fealty to the ISIS “Caliphate,” Khaama Press quotes Afghan defense officials saying loyalists of the terror state “have faced major setbacks as a result of the mounting military operations before they manage to establish and expand foothold in the country.”
U.S. forces have conducted at least 20 airstrikes against ISIS positions over the past few weeks, according to this report.
Between 1,000 and 3,000 Islamic State fighters are estimated to be active in the mountains of Afghanistan’s eastern Nangarhar Province, which is part of the broad region ISIS refers to as “Khurasan Province,” covering parts of Afghanistan and Pakistan. Khaama Press notes the flags appearing in the ISIS propaganda video claim its training camp is located somewhere in the Khurasan area.
The Islamic State’s media operation has been busy lately. Another recent propaganda video shows a father teaching his 12-year-old son how to be a suicide bomber in Syria, followed by what is touted as footage of the child successfully detonating himself against Syrian regime troops in Aleppo.