The Yemen-based Al Qaeda branch, AQAP, has announced its solidarity with the Islamic State. The Islamic State was previously seen as “too extreme” for Al Qaeda, but it seems as though some Al Qaeda members are ready to throw in their efforts with the rapidly expanding Islamic State.
“We announce solidarity with our Muslim brothers in Iraq against the crusade,” a statement on the group’s Al-Manbar website read, according to the Yemen Times. “Their blood and injuries are ours and we will surely support them.”
Reuters reported that AQAP also seems to have tweeted support for the Islamic State.
“We call on all Islamist groups … to go after America as part of its plan for jihad, militarily, economically, or through the media,” its message read. “And we call on every Muslim, especially anyone who can enter America, to champion his brothers by going to war against America with everything he can.”
AQAP went so far as to give tactical advice to the Islamic State, which is conquering large swaths of territory in Iraq.
“Based on our experience with drones, we advise our brothers in Iraq to be cautious about spies among them,” they warned. “Be cautious about dealing with cell phones and internet networks; do not gather in large numbers or move in large convoys; spread in farms or hide under trees in the case of loud humming of warplanes; and dig sophisticated trenches because they reduce the impact of shelling.”
The Islamic State grows bolder each day, and the announcement from AQAP will likely only strengthen its position. On Tuesday, the Islamic State posted a horrific video showing its members beheading American journalist James Foley.
President Barack Obama responded Wednesday by saying the Islamic State would not survive.
“They fail because the future’s won by those who build and not destroy, and the world is shaped by people like Jim Foley and the overwhelming majority of humanity who are appalled by those who kill them,” he said.