The American flag, or parts thereof (such as the stars and stripes), are widely used in jihadi propaganda to evoke negative sentiments towards U.S. foreign policy and military campaigns. The stars and stripes are also used to color other symbols in an image, thereby linking the symbols to U.S. foreign policy and military intervention in the Muslim world. Here, the image constitutes a protest against the Abu Ghrayb abuses, verbalized in the slogan: “qissat asir ‘inda al-salibiyyin” (“the story of a Crusaders’ prisoner”). The image of the figure on the left is from a famous photo from Abu Ghrayb, used by major media outlets, when they reported on the abuses at the prison.

The red of the background is the color of fire, blood, passion, impulse and danger. It is fundamentally linked to the vital force and to warlike qualities. Notably, the red lightly veils the pictures of numerous additional Abu Ghrayb prison abuses that were repeatedly shown in mainstream media when the story broke in 2004. The propagandists link the U.S., its occupation of Iraq and the Abu Ghrayb abuses with Christianity and the medieval Crusades. This conjures up the historical memory of the Crusades, and frames the U.S. occupation of Iraq as a neo-Crusade, i.e., a renewed war instigated by the Christian West against the Muslim East.

More Information
Group Name GIMF
Group Affiliation AQ Affiliates / Associates
Dominant Colors Red
Secondary Colors Black, Blue, White, Yellow
Language Arabic , English
Visual or Textual Reference to Significant Recent Events
Date EntryAnalysis Entry
2004 story broke regarding Abu Ghrayb abuses
Isolated Phrases / Mottoes / Slogans Qissat asir `inda al-salibiyyin
Image Number 0106
Groups Region of Operation Global
Geopolitical Symbols Country Flag, Slogan
Geopolitical Analysis U.S.A.
People Man / Men
Religious Symbols Cross

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