'GTA 5 Online' Video Purports To Be Second ISIS Foray Into 'Grand Theft Auto V' Propaganda

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In 2014, footage from Grand Theft Auto V Online was purportedly used by the Islamic State (ISIS) as part of a propaganda release to Arabic language news outlets. The video (which can still be watched here) combines footage from GTA Online (the multiplayer component of GTA 5) with religious nasheeds (a capella songs) and what sound like voices in the field. The caption before the GTA 5 video reads “Your games which are producing from you, we do the same actions in the battelfields!! [sic]” while an ISIS flag hangs in the corner throughout. Now a new video has emerged, once again claiming to be GTA 5 propaganda from ISIS.

The new video was posted to the GTA subreddit with the description “just wanted to share the news because I love GTA and saw this video.” The upload comes in the form of a SendVid, making the original creator and uploader difficult to ascertain. 

UPDATE: The original Reddit poster has provided iDigitalTimes with a little more information regarding the video's origin, writing that the video was posted on "the social media platform/messaging app Telegram. ISIS has some public channels they share news in and people can post in, and they posted a link in there." Inverse has more on ISIS' use of apps like Telegram. According to the poster the video was provided with the message, "Brothers, please watch this video... I hope you liked it inshallah!"

The ISIS GTA 5 video can be watched here (for now). Rather than a montage, this new video portrays a single scene, as an ISIS member pulls up in a SUV, executes two people in orange jumpsuits reading “INMATE” and drives off. While the video contains the ISIS flag in the corner, it’s animated this time, just the first of many sophisticated new touches in this alleged ISIS video.

While the original ISIS GTA 5 video, characterized as likely genuine by Forbes and The Intercept in 2014, combined low-res gameplay footage with live audio and snippets from nasheeds, the new alleged Grand Theft Auto ISIS video is much more cinematic, portraying a single moment of swaggering violence, clearly aping slow-mo “badass” movie moments like this:

Not only is the video of a much higher resolution, but it also seems to employ several Grand Theft Auto V mods, including Jridah’s GoreV and a modded-in Toyota truck (the Grand Theft Auto series typically uses parodies of real car names instead).

When not posting about Overwatch, the original poster frequently posts and discusses execution videos allegedly released by ISIS to subreddit r/watchpeopledie.

Igmarn posts regarding many of the alleged ISIS videos typically voice disagreement with ISIS’ philosophy while describing their actions as similar to those of their enemies. One comment typical of his or her position reads “Yes they kill lots of people put they don't do it without reason. They are or captured soldiers, or they are people that broke the law, which they agreed on not to break. (Same as the death penalty in the US).”

UPDATE: This post has been updated with more information about the origin of this alleged new Grand Theft Auto V ISIS video.

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