After a 22-year-old suicide bomber killed 22 people and injured dozens more at a Manchester concert venue on Monday evening, it was only a matter of hours before Islamic terrorist organisation ISIS claimed responsibility.
In fact, they did so twice. But according to the ABC, they made a revealing mistake: one announcement contradicted the other. As The New York Times reporter Rukmini Callimachi told Lateline, the first described the attacker as a “soldier of the caliphate” while the second attributed the carnage to a “security detachment”.
It’s a rare misstep for a usually disciplined propaganda machine; one that has furthered doubt about whether the group is truly responsible. After all, while it’s known that the bomber travelled to Syria and Libya prior to the attack, British authorities are yet to establish any direct links between him and ISIS.
It was the same for the Bastille Day truck attack in Nice last July - ISIS claimed responsibility for the 86 deaths, but no links between the driver and the group were ever found.
At this point, it's pertinent to remember those now-famous words uttered by The Project's Waleed Aly in the wake of the 2015 terror attacks on Paris. That this "weak" organisation will use any means necessary to achieve their end, including claiming credit for the terror inflicted by DIY terrorists in order to appear “bigger and tougher than they actually are”.
"There’s a reason, ISIL want to appear so powerful, why they don’t want to acknowledge that the land they control has been taken from weak enemies, that they’re pinned down by air strikes," he said.
"ISIL don’t want you to know that they would quickly be crushed if they ever faced a proper army on a real battlefield. They want you to fear them. They want you to get angry, they want all of us to become hostile."
Why? The answer, he argued, is as simple as it is barbaric.
"They want countries like ours to reject their Muslims and vilify them... Because this evil organisation has it in their heads, that if they can make Muslims the enemy of the west, then Muslims in France and England and America and here in Australia will have nowhere to turn, but to ISIL."
Watch the video below.