Despite Facebook’s claims that a cluster of pages peddling ISIS goods would be taken down, recent searches show many pages containing merchandise with the terrorist group’s symbols still remain on the most popular social-media site in the world.
“At Facebook, we have rules that bar direct statements of hate, attacks on private individuals and groups, and the promotion of terrorism,” said Facebook spokesman Israel Hernandez in June. “We have a team of professional investigators both here in the U.S. and abroad who enforce these rules. Where hateful content is posted and reported, Facebook removes it and disables accounts of those responsible.”
The items offered for sale include baseball caps, clothing and jewelry – many bearing the familiar black flag associated with the terrorist group and its slogan, “Baqiyah.”
One of the Facebook pages is run by a jihadi sympathizer based in Toulouse, France. He posts pro-ISIS messages on his “Baqiyah Création” page and advertises “high-quality” products made for “true believers,” according to MEMRI’s Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor.
Dave Gaubatz, author of “Muslim Mafia: Inside the Secret Underworld That’s Conspiring to Islamize America,” contends Facebook and other social media sites have a responsibility to shut down the forums used to market radical Islam and mobilize Islamic youth.
“I am a defender of the U.S. Constitution but the Constitution was not designed for enemies of America,” said Gaubatz, a former U.S. Air Force investigator.
“We must stop jihad online because these groups target our children through social media,” he told Fox News.
Many of the websites selling ISIS merchandise are based in Indonesia, where there is growing support for the extremist group. The gear bears slogans like “Mujahideen Around the World United We Stand,” “Fight for Freedom Till The Last Drop of Blood” and “We Stand for ISIS.”
An Indonesian vendor who runs the “Al-Faruq Islamic Store” sells his products through Facebook and eBay. The store’s Facebook banner advertises: “We sell Islamic Flags, Badges, Headbands and other stuff.”
Another vendor named Zirah Moslem now uses Twitter to sell his products from Indonesia after his Facebook page and website were shut down in June of this year, reports MEMRI.
“ISIS is more than likely not producing shirts but indirectly they are benefiting from it,” Scotty Neil, a former Green Beret who founded Operator, a clothing company geared toward special ops soldiers, told Fox News. “I don’t think that T-shirt company X is sending the Islamic State funds, but people wearing these shirts are making an outward statement and that often starts a dialogue and debate that furthers their message.”
ISIS merchandise has also appeared on Amazon.com through various third-party Indonesian vendors using names such as ISIS Cap or Khilafahstuff. Khilafahstuff offers flags and caps in large quantities and offers shipping to anywhere in the world. “All our products are made with professional materials, the quality of our clothing are either organic or 100% cotton, pure quality Allah be blessed,” boasts the page. The store also sells al-Qaida-related merchandise such as flags and caps.