Washington Post | Souad Mekhennet |Nov. 1, 2019
When the Islamic State finally broke its silence about the killing of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, it did so with a 1,200-word communique that included Koranic verses, florid tributes and one very specific warning: Americans would pay for the death of the terrorist group’s leader.
“Do not get too joyful or arrogant,” the statement issued Thursday by the Islamic State’s al-Furqan media outlet said. Referring to the group’s newly appointed chief, it added: “Someone has now come to make you forget the horrors [that you already] have seen, and the cups of bitterness that you have tasted.”
The statement was a more formalized version of a threat that has been echoed dozens of times in the past week on social media platforms used by Islamic State supporters around the world. With words, and sometimes doctored images and illustrations, the militants have vowed to exact revenge for Baghdadi’s death on Oct. 26 at the hands of U.S. Special Operations forces in northwest Syria.