To Syria, and an exciting development in jihadist PR. For far too long, fighter recruitment videos have felt stuck in some idealised past, where you didn't need a celebrity angle to get your message across. But at last, al-Qaida and its affiliates seem to have accepted the reality: that their only real star is no longer with us, having passed to the great bloopers reel in the sky following the assault on his Pakistan compound almost three years ago.
As such, they need to find new hooks to keep a showbiz-obsessed audience's attention – and to this end, have finally embraced the idea that nothing can truly be put into perspective today unless it is filtered through the prism of our own fametastic Premier League. Thus, two weeks ago, an account linked to al-Qaida associates the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (Isis) released a video showing a balaclava-wearing man urging viewers to join his jihadi outfit. He was captioned: "An ex football player (Arsenal of London), who left everything for jihad."
Well, it is not for Lost in Showbiz to point out that when Isis says "everything", what it means is "the chance to wildly over-celebrate beating Wigan on penalties". But rumours swiftly abounded that the player in question was Lassana Diarra, a former Arsenal defender now believed to be at Lokomotiv Moscow – certainly by the fans of that club who have been watching him week in and week out this season. Happily for Diarra and Lokomotiv Moscow, these suggestions have now been debunked. Analysis of the jihadist's voice has concluded he is probably Portuguese, with investigations suggesting that he may well be an individual who was previously resident in east London. No heroically severed link with a Page 3 girl has been uncovered. OK! magazine's archives do not contain a spread featuring his frescoed snooker room.
For Arsenal, though, the uncertainty seems to continue, in that the club has not felt able to rule out the possibility that the chap in question attended coaching sessions at some juncture. Very wise. After all, it wasn't so long ago that Isis took the city of Raqqa, and if it all goes tits up at Wembley come the cup final, I see no reason why Emirates top brass shouldn't claim that territorial win as a trophy of sorts.