MESOP MEMRI REPORT :MEMRI JTTM: Responses To Brussels Attacks: ISIS Supporters On Social Media React With Threats, Glee


The following report is a complimentary offering from MEMRI’s Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM).  On March 22, 2016, a series of attacks in Brussels, targeting the Zaventem Airport and Maalbeek Metro station, left at least 34 dead and 230 injured. These attacks come days after the capture in Brussels of Salah Abdesalam – one of the prime suspects behind the November 2015 Paris terror attacks. Hours after the Brussels attacks, the ISIS-affiliated A’maq News Agency claimed responsibility for the attacks on behalf of ISIS.[1]

ISIS supporters on social media platforms such as Twitter, Telegram, Instagram, and Facebook reacted by issuing additional threats as well as by celebrating the attacks, expressing joy with the scale of the devestation, and boasting about the fear ISIS sows across Europe. One Twitter user even singled out Germany as the next target. The attacks were also presented as retribution for Western attacks against ISIS.


Twitter user Um Omarah Al-Muwahhidah tweeted in French, using the French-language #Bruxelles hashtag, “After the bombs, wait for our soldiers with kalachnikovs. They will fire (with machine guns) in all the streets!  ​This is only the beginning of your nightmare. The second part of the plan is activated. ​Expect more deaths!”[2]


Wait for more bombs, more deaths! Soon in Germany, too!”

“A black day for Belgians today, but this is only the start of a long series of attacks on your soil.”

Another Twitter user, Aisha Al-Dawlawiyyah, posted a series of tweets in French warning that more bombs were placed around the city. She wrote, “Urgent, do not transport the victims to CHU [University Hospital] Saint Pierre in Brussels, several bombs are inside!”[3]




​”#Urgent  several bombs placed at the University of Brussels in retaliation for the University of Mosul.”


“#Urgent Several bombs were placed at the European commission! Clear out immediately or die!”

Using the hashtag “Brussels Raid,” Twitter user Abu Omar Al-Ansari[4] posted in Arabic, “The lions are still roaring in Brussels, thanks to Allah. The results of the Brussels raid, so far, 26 dead and 135 wounded.”

In the same hashtag, another supporter (@KaRiM2twit[5]) tweeted: “The Islamic State has infiltrated and humiliated all the European entrenchments and strucke once again.”

Twitter user @T7alf_60,[6] an ISIS supporter using the Arabic hashtag “Brussels Attack” tweeted: “It won’t be the last, by Allah’s promise. O worshiper of the Cross, safety [will be something] you will wish for.”

The Telegram group “Inspire Muslims” posted the following message: “European Union under attack simultaneous days.

“* Bamako mali-Eu base 21 March.

“* Brussels airport, metro station 22nd.

“U either stop working against Islam and Muslims and leave Muslim Lands Or [series of explosion emoji]”


A prominent ISIS disseminator and translator currently using the name Anbariyyah Ansariyyah aka Radical Bird[7] tweeted: “The message has been delivered to all leaders of Kufr [unbelief], For every actions – a reaction. But when believers react, it hurts!! The west needs to know. As long as they bomb Syria and Iraq. They will be bombed in their own land. This is just the beginning…”[8]


On Instagram, an ISIS fighter using the name misqandmaidens posted a photo of the carnage from the Brussels airport and wrote: “The dearest thing to the kuffar [infidels] is to live in this dunya [life], they think this is paradise so we will show them hell.”[9]


Celebrating The Attacks

Twitter user Milk Sheikh wrote: “Today is a happy day for the believers!”


He added, “The best thing to do now by Belgium is to crackdown on Muslims, it would just make the indoctrination work much easier for us.”[10]

An ISIS fighter in Libya named Abu Baraa[11] posted on Facebook: “I am happy today, extremely happy! The Brussels attack has indeed healed the hearts of the believers and striked terror in the hearts of the enemy! Let them live a second of what our families in darul khilafa [the Islamic State] experience every day! #KillThemWhereverYouFindThem.”[12]


Facebook user Omar Abdul Wadud posted an image of a chocolate grenade and wrote: “Belgium chocolate anyone?”[13]


Twitter user “Sleeper Cell” posted before and after images of Zaventem Airport and wrote: “Before and after Allahu Akbar!!!”[14]


Twitter user Abu Abdulluh tweeted: “Did the kuffar think tht they will be left alone after harming us? have a taste of ur own medicine. #brusselsairport.”[15]


ISIS supporters on Facebook have been using different hashtag to celebrate the Brussels attacks. One Arabic hashtag – “the war will be inside your land” – featured a post from user Ghazi Alhaj[16], who wrote: “The lions are still roaring in Brussels, thanks to Allah. So far, the results of Brussels raid is 26 dead and 135 wounded. In the bombing of Brussels’ metro, 15 were killed and 55 wounded. In the bombing of Brussels airport, 11 were killed and 80 wounded.”

Advice And Security Tips Following The Attack

The pro-ISIS Telegram group “Information Security” shared the following post, intended for its Belgian followers, providing security tips following the attacks:

“Attentions for all our brothers in Belgium

“- Stay away from using Internet unless you are using encryption Software such as (Tor Network- i2P Network-VPN)

“- Encrypt all your jihadies Files and it’s better to delete them Permanently with Eraser or iShredder or kill disk.

“- We highly recommend using Tails OS or Qubes OS and stay away from Using any other products or systems unless you unplug internet.

“- Stay away from Social Media websites don’t share any information with your brothers right now. Keep low profile until the heat dies down.

“- Intelligence agencies will work all day and night to catch any jihadi in Belgium So be ready to act.

“- Try to change your location as soon as possible and don’t tell anyone about your location.

“- Don’t panic keep calm and concentrate on your next movie and don’t Forget to warn your brothers to Take precations.”



Dutch Jabhat Al-Nusra fighter Abu Saeed al-Holandi speculated as to why more security measures were not taken at the airport. He tweeted: “Belgium’s main international airport was always at the top of the jihadist’s target list. I wonder why no security measures were taken.”[17]


American Telegram user Abu Sharif al-Amriki wrote: “It’s brilliant, because when they caught abdulselam the[y] thought they could interrogate him and stop an attack but now, it doesn’t matter, might as well let him go.”


ISIS Supporters Organize

Facebook called Ahmed Kalah shared a Telegram message from the Caliphate Cyber Army which reads: “Share and join, time to play your minor role and make your voice heard by the billions who will be viewing those hashtags! In a few moments the raid is going to start. We are posting as much as we can in these hashtags #Bruxells, #Brussel and #Brussels. This is top priority now, need to fill our stuff into the brussels hashtag. Get ready, we need everyone!!!!”[18]



[1] See MEMRI JTTM report, ISIS-Affiliated News Agency A’maq Says ISIS Fighters Carried Out Brussels Attacks Using Bombs, Explosive Belts, March 22, 2016.

[2], March 22, 2016.

[3], March 22, 2016.

[4], March 22, 2016.

[5], March 22, 2016.

[6] T7alf_60, March 22, 2016.

[7] See MEMRI JTTM report, English-Speaking Woman Brings ISIS Message To Western Audiences, June 22, 2015.

[8], March 22, 2016.

[9] March 22, 2016.

[10], March 22, 2016.

[11] See MEMRI JTTM report, ISIS Fighter In Libya Shares Experiences On Facebook, March 16, 2016.

[12] March 22, 2016.

[13], March 22, 2016.

[14], March 22, 2016.

[15], March 22, 2016.

[16], March 22, 2016.

[17], March 22, 2016.

[18], March 22, 2016.