Extremist Content Online: AQAP Claims Florida Naval Base Shooting

The Counter Extremism Project (CEP) reports weekly on the methods used by extremists to exploit the Internet and social media platforms to recruit followers and incite violence.

This week, al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) claimed responsibility for the December 6 shooting at the Pensacola Naval Base. Additionally, a Neo-Nazi web security group affiliated with the Atomwaffen Division (AWD) was located, where they claim to provide hosting services, tech support, and research infrastructure to multiple extremist groups.

Neo-Nazi and ISIS content calling for acts of violence were located on Instagram. Following the February 4 stabbing in the Maldives claimed by individuals supporting the Islamic State, legacy Maldivian pro-ISIS content was located on various media platforms. Finally, Neo-Nazi accelerationist channels uploaded homemade firearms instructions to Telegram.

AQAP Claims Responsibility For Shooting At U.S. Naval Facility
On February 2, al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) claimed responsibility for the December 6 shooting at Naval Air Station Pensacola by a member of the Royal Saudi Air Force. Second Lieutenant Mohammed Saeed Al-Shamrani killed three people and injured eight others before he was killed by responding law enforcement officers. All three base casualties were U.S. Navy sailors. On February 2, AQAP released a pre-recorded video by their leader, Qasim al-Raymi, stating that Al-Shamrani was in communication with the group, and that AQAP claimed responsibility.

Raymi also called on Muslims in the U.S. and the U.K. to commit attacks against commerce, politicians, and members of the armed forces. The White House announced on February 6 that Raymi was killed in a U.S. airstrike.

Text of the video was uploaded to the Internet Archive and was still available three days later. In addition to a website operated by AQAP, the video was uploaded to at least ten other websites: Megafiles.in, 1fichier.com, Epicdrive.site, files.fm, mystream.to, Amazon Cloud Drive, Dropbox, the Microsoft One Drive, Userscloud, and Zippyshare. Approximately four days later, the video was still available on the AQAP website as well as megafiles.in, and Epicdrive.site. The AQAP website uses Cloudflare as their name server.

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