ISIS: We Were Responsible for Las Vegas

Did some media play into ISIS's hands?

Did some media play into ISIS's hands?

Without providing any evidence to support the claim, the Islamic State group on Monday said the gunman in the mass shooting in Las Vegas was "a soldier" from its ranks who had converted to Islam months ago.

The Islamic State claim was reported by Amaq, a news agency that has been linked to the terrorist group but has not formally acknowledged the connection. Moreover, the report says that in a statement ISIS referred to Paddock by the nom de guerre Abu Abd al-Barr al-Amriki.

In an apparent attempt to raise morale, ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi released an audio message last week, the first since November, vowing to continue fighting and lavishing praise on his jihadis for their valor in the battlefield.

It has made exaggerated or false claims in the past.

USA officials say Paddock, a consummate gambler, bought 33 weapons in the a year ago.

Police said the 64-year-old white American opened fire from the 32nd floor of a nearby hotel, where he had multiple weapons and is believed to have killed himself.

Despite the terrorist group's past prudence, Federal Bureau of Investigation officials say there is no connection between shooter Stephen Paddock and an worldwide terrorist group, or any evidence that indicates he was inspired by ISIS. ISIS attacks have been carried out by mostly young men.

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The FBI said there is no proof the attack was linked to an global terrorist group.

In June, the group claimed an attack by a gunman who ignited a casino fire that left 36 people dead in the Philippine capital, Manila.

Isis was also linked to a vehicle and knife attack in Edmonton, Canada, where a police officer found a flag used by the group in the perpetrator's auto.

"The Las Vegas attack was carried out by a soldier of the Islamic State and he carried it out in response to calls to target states of the coalition", Amaq news agency said in reference to the USA -led coalition fighting the group in the Middle East.

However, the group remains active in recruiting followers on social media, and has repeatedly called on its supporters to carry out attacks in Western nations.

Gerges said the Las Vegas attack claim illustrates the extremely hard position ISIS faces at home and its lack of strategic coordination.

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