The story so far: On May 4, Reuters reported that "the makers of combat video games have unwittingly become part of a global propaganda campaign by Islamic militants to exhort Muslim youths to take up arms against the United States...Tech-savvy militants from al Qaeda and other groups have modified video war games so that U.S. troops play the role of bad guys in running gunfights against heavily armed Islamic radical heroes."
This startling revelation occurred during a presentation to Congess by the representatives of Science Applications International Corp (SAIC), a San Diego based defense contractor. The Pentagon has paid SAIC $7 million to monitor Al Qaeda websites. "SAIC executive Eric Michael said researchers suspect Islamic militants are using video games to train recruits and condition youth to attack U.S.-led coalition forces in Iraq," Reuters reported. The news service also described one of these Islamist game mods, created from EA's Battlefield 2:
In a modified video trailer posted on Islamic Web sites and shown to lawmakers, the game depicts a man in Arab headdress carrying an automatic weapon into combat with U.S. invaders. "I was just a boy when the infidels came to my village in Blackhawk helicopters," a narrator's voice said as the screen flashed between images of street-level gunfights, explosions and helicopter assaults.
If that dialog sounds familiar, that's because it's lifted from Team America: World Police. The supposed "Islamist mod," in fact, was simply a Battlefield 2 trailer with a new soundtrack laid over it, created by a Moroccan-Dutch gamer who uses the handle "SonicJihad" (after an album by rapper Paris), and posted on a Battlefield 2 fan forum.
Internet Archive has Sonic Jihad's video.
SJ: I don't regret making the video. It wasn't intended for the purpose what it was portrayed to be by the media. So no I don't regret making a funny video.. why should I? The only thing I regret is thinking that news from Reuters was objective and always right. The least they could do is some online research before publishing this. If they label me al-Qaeda just for making this silly video, that makes you think, what is this al-Qaeda? And is everything al-Qaeda? Or has this name become synonymous to the "communist" labeling a few decades ago...