As the French people went to the polls to select a president, jihadi members of an al-Qaeda online forum exchanged messages discussing their aspiration to "reinvade France (and convert it into) an Islamic country."
The internet discussion appeared as Spanish security forces warned that both Spain and France were targets of al-Qaeda terror plots.
A post that appeared on the al-Firdaws jihadi forum, submitted by a user named Faisal al-Baghdadi, contained a lengthy historical account of "the second stop of the Islamic conquest of Europe, France, after Andalusia, Spain."
The post took a nostalgic look at the battle of Tours in 732, in which Muslim forces, commanded by Rahman al-Ghafiqi, who invaded a portion of France, were repelled by the Frankish general Charles Martel ("the hammer"), and forced to retreat. The battle stemmed the medieval Islamic conquest of Europe.
"The Islamic army was left with a large number of martyrs, especially the great shahid (martyr) Abdul Rahman a-Ghafiqi… this battle is mentioned in history, and is known at the battle of Tours," the post explained.
"We ask that Allah sends us a genuine Rahman al-Ghafiqi, to finish what he started in Europe, and conquer the Vatican as promised in our beautiful Islamic verses," the post concluded.
"Allah bless the writer and carrier of the message which recalls the days of glory and honor of Islam," another user responded.
Jihadis prepare for nuclear warMeanwhile, a document circulating a number of al-Qaeda websites contains a guide on how to survive a nuclear war. An accompanying message said the guide had been translated into Arabic.
The document began with a prayer: "And make ready against them all you can of power, including steeds of war to threaten the enemy of Allah and your enemy…"
"The main purpose of this booklet is to help individuals and families prepare plans to survive and protect themselves against the potential dangers of nuclear war in particular, and wars of mass destruction in general," the guide said.
"To escape nuclear attack is one of the most important topics of survival," and is "applicable to nuclear, chemical and similarly genocidal wars, which the devout enemies of God would wage, if forced to find alternatives following their failure to implement their plans through initial use of conventional wars," the document said. "These have proven to be devastating failures at the hands of the black heroes of jihad and resistance to the occupation of Mesopotamia (Iraq)," it added.
"Finally, we ask God to grant us the ability to enable his rule across all corners of the earth," the message concluded. It was signed by "your brothers in the Jihad Media Battalion."