Despite recent setbacks thanks to U.S. airstrikes in northern Iraq, the Islamic State might be forgiven for feeling emboldened by the territorial gains it's made in Iraq and Syria in a relatively short time period. Indeed, the group has plans to establish an Islamic caliphate in the Middle East and beyond to unite the Muslim world under sharia.
Thus, it's really no surprise that IS militants would taunt Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Russian President Vladimir Putin by telling them that they're coming to attack them on their own turf. The militants in the video are seen sitting in fighter planes at the Tabqa airbase, which they recently captured from the Syrian government:
"Vladimir Putin, these are the Russian planes that you sent to Bashar. Allah willing, we will take them back to your own turf and liberate Chechnya and the Caucasus, Allah willing. The Islamic State is here to stay. It is spreading and has become a caliphate. Your throne is being threatened by us. Allah will grant us success."
The president of the Chechen Republic, which has de facto independence from Russia and is predominantly Muslim, didn't take kindly to the idea that IS would "liberate" his nation. President Ramzan Kadyrov went to his instagram account to respond, and according to a Google translation, he said in part,
Terrorists from Syria, who call themselves "Islamic state", expressed the... threat to go to war in Chechnya and the Caucasus... These bastards have no relation to Islam. They are outspoken enemies of Muslims around the world.
I state with full responsibility that the one who had the idea to express a threat to Russia and say the name of the President of the country Vladimir Putin, will be destroyed.
We completely destroyed [the extremist Islamic International Brigade] in Chechnya [during the Second Chechen War], where their forces numbered tens of thousands of people, and now will destroy those who even come to mind askance look at Chechnya is Russia.
I want to remind everyone who is planning something against our country, that Russia has a worthy sons, ready to fulfill any order, wring the neck of any enemy in his own lair, wherever he may be....
It is extremely unlikely that IS could ever get close enough to Chechnya to seriously threaten the federal republic, but when extremists like this think god is on their side, for them, anything is possible.
Even when it actually isn't
h/t: Zero Hedge