Hamas-Tip of the Muslim Brotherhood Spear

20110630_gmbdrmedium (2)CSP, By Kyle Shideler:

As Israeli forces continue advance into Gaza to combat Hamas- with a particular focus on combating the infiltration tunnels used by Hamas to conduct raids targeting Israeli civilians, it’s worth raising the question, why is it that Hamas, an isolated terrorist organization, feels comfortable repeatedly going head to head with the most powerful regional military in the Middle East?

They have state sponsors, such as Iran, Turkey and Qatar, who provide financing, true, but ultimately, Hamas is comfortable operating because they know that behind them stands the entire Global Muslim Brotherhood movement.

This has never been a secret. Hamas’ founding charter (Article 2:) states:

the Islamic Resistance Movement is one of the wings of the Muslim Brothers in Palestine. The Muslim Brotherhood Movement is a world organization, the largest Islamic Movement in the modern era.

Nor has this changed. During the Muslim Brotherhood’s rule over Egypt, Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh pointed out that Hamas, “was the Jihadi movement of the Brotherhood, with a Palestinian face.” That’s important to note. Hamas’ supposed interest in the Palestinians is but a face Hamas wears to further their real interest. Jihad.  Indeed, during Brotherhood rule in Egypt, Hamas was formally raised to a position within the Global Muslim Brotherhood.

The global Muslim Brotherhood has been oriented to support jihad on behalf of “Palestine” since Hamas was established. The 1982 “Global Project for Palestine” document acquired by Swiss Law Enforcement during a raid on Muslim Brotherhood financier Yousef Nada after 9/11 indicates the role of the Global Muslim Brotherhood in directing policy for the”Palestinian Cause”:

THE ELEVENTH POINT OF DEPARTURE

To adopt the Palestinian cause as part of a worldwide Islamic plan, with the policy plan and by means of jihad, since it acts as the keystone of the renaissance of the Arab world today.

a-Elements:

To provide an Islamic view on all areas, problems and solutions relative to the Palestinian question, based on the precepts of Islam.

To prepare the community of believers for jihad for the liberation of Palestine.

[One can lead the Ummah to realize the plans of the Islamic movement above all if victory is ours], if God wills it.

To create a modest nucleus of jihad in Palestine, and to nourish it in order to maintain the flame that will light the road toward the liberation of Palestine, and in order that the Palestinian cause will endure until the moment of liberation.

This global direction was confirmed by documents seized in the home of US Muslim Brotherhood member Ismail Elbarasse, who was arrested by a Maryland law enforcement on a material witness warrant after being caught with his wife videotaping the structural supports for the Chesapeake Bay Bridge.  On such document, an internal 1992 memo from the Muslim Brotherhood front the Islamic Association of Palestine notes:

D- Palestine Committees in the countries:

With the growth of the blessed Intifada and the spread of’ the spirit of Jihad amidst the children of Palestine and the nation, it became incumbent upon the remainder of the lkhwan branches to play a role in attributing this Intifada and this Islamic action to Palestine. Therefore, a resolution was issued by the Guidance Office and the Shura Council of the International Movement to form “Palestine Committees” in all the Arab, the Islamic and the Western nations whose job is to make the Palestinian cause victorious and to support it with what it needs of media, money, men and all of that. (Refer to the resolution in the supplement).

Three: a- The Islamic Resistance Movement:

With the increase of the Intifada and the advance of the Islamic action inside and outside Palestine, the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas), provided through its activities in resisting the Zionist occupation a lot of sacrifices from martyrs, detainees, wounded, injured, fugitives and deportees and it was able to prove that it is an original and an effective movement in leading the Palestinian people. This Movement – which was bred in the bosom of the mother movement, “The Muslim Brotherhood” – restored hope and life to the Muslim nation and the notion that the flare of Jihad has not died out and that the banner of Islamic Jihad is still raised.

As the Israel Defense Forces hunt down Hamas terrorists in the Gaza Strip, it’s worth reminding ourselves that behind the men with rockets, mortars and AK-47s, lies a global organization prepared to fund them, to manipulate the media on their behalf, and to defend them from world opinion. The Muslim Brotherhood affiliated International Union of the Muslim Scholars called out for, “the Islamic and Arab peoples to rise up in all parts of the world for the sake of Palestine and Jerusalem since it is the central issue of the nation…” Founded by chief Muslim Brotherhood jurist Yusuf Al Qaradawi, IUMS has previously called for the killing of American troops and civilians in Iraq. But that did not stop the Obama White House from meeting with IUMs vice President Abdallah Bin Bayyah last year. Shortly after the IUMS issued their call for a global uprising, the Muslim Brotherhood website Ikhwanweb.com echoed the same call. Not surprisingly, we now see violent riots breaking out in Paris, and elsewhere.

While we can applaud the careful and deliberate counterterrorism operation now being conducted by the IDF, we should remember that to truly defeat Hamas we must uproot the Global Muslim Brotherhood. We should also be wary that when the Muslim Brotherhood does calls for violence, there are those out there like Ismail Elbarasse who have done the reconnaissance, filmed the targets, and spent decades indoctrinating the young men who will answer the call.

Jihadist groups across globe vying for terror spotlight

January 2, 2014: Fighters of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria carry their weapons during a parade in the Syrian town of Tel Abyad, near the border with Turkey.(Reuters)

January 2, 2014: Fighters of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria carry their weapons during a parade in the Syrian town of Tel Abyad, near the border with Turkey.(Reuters)

By Perry Chiaramonte:

With every new act of stunning savagery in the name of Islam that takes place in some corner of the world, a new terrorist group seems to step into the spotlight.

From Al Qaeda’s sudden ascendance in the 1990s, to the recent rise of Boko Haram in Nigeria and ISIS in Iraq, new factions are springing up throughout the world, spreading the twisted message of violence and hate in the name of Allah. Most trace their roots to the terror group founded by Usama bin Laden, but have spun off, and fanned out around the world putting their own stamps on the indiscriminate brutality that is the trademark of terrorism.

“The trend is one of decentralization — smaller Al Qaeda affiliates charting their own courses,” said Ryan Mauro, national security analyst for the research institute The Clarion Project. “If groups like ISIS are seen as more successful, the aspiring jihadists will view them as being blessed by Allah and rally to them. Success is seen as evidence of Allah’s approval, and defeat is seen as Allah’s distancing, or even judgment.”

For now, ISIS, with a huge swath of conquered territory, hundreds of millions of dollars looted from Iraqi banks and a leader — Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi — who has pronounced himself the “Caliph” of Muslims around the world, is in position to challenge Al Qaeda for status as the most powerful terror group on the planet. That makes it a magnet for new recruits and donations, said Mauro. One chilling act could cement its role.

“If ISIS wants to overtake Al Qaeda to become the leading Salafist terror group, then it must replicate Al Qaeda’s greatest achievement: Striking the U.S,” Mauro said. “Once that happens, Al Qaeda supporters will switch to ISIS in droves unless the two reconcile.”

Boko Haram was founded in in 2002 in Nigeria’s Borno State, where it campaigned, mostly peacefully, for a Shariah state. But in 2009, after founder Mohammed Yusef was executed in Nigeria, Boko Haram took a violent turn, embracing terrorism, forcing conversions of Christians, and orchestrating kidnappings and bombings. In recent years, Boko Haram has emerged as one of the world’s most dangerous and violent Islamic terrorist sects, culminating in April’s kidnapping of nearly 300 Christian schoolgirls.

Here are some other Islamic terrorist groups operating around the world and waiting to fill any void that should be left by their more high-profile counterparts.

Read more at Fox News

WHY ISIS IS MORE DANGEROUS THAN AL QAEDA AND WHAT AMERICA MUST DO ABOUT IT

ISIS-heavy-weapons-reutersby :

In the space of just a few weeks, the jihadi threat group ISIS has accomplished more than al Qaeda did in the the thirteen years since the September 11 attacks. It will continue to grow in power and come to pose a direct threat to the United States unless America guides a regional response. Now.
On a sunny Tuesday morning in September of 2001, al Qaeda entered the history books as the deadliest terrorist group in modern history. In under a few hours it murdered more people in New York, Washington, and Pennsylvania than other terrorist groups like the IRA or the Baader-Meinhof Gang had killed over a period of decades.
Since that dreadful day, the original Al Qaeda, what the administration refers to now as ‘Core AQ’, has executed or inspired other attacks to include those of Richard Reid the infamous Shoebomber, Major Nidal Hassan the Fort Hood killer, and Faisal Shazad, the Times Square bomber. At the same time it has recruited foreign fighters to wage guerrilla war inside Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, Somalia, as well as for other jihadi theaters.
Additionally, it has waged a propaganda campaign to spread its message of holy war against the infidel with publications such as the periodical Inspire, the e-magazine that included a recipe for pressure-cooker IEDs, a recipe that would be used by the Boston bombers.
Despite all of the above, the threat posed by Al Qaeda pales by comparison to the achievements of its off-shoot the Islamic State of Iraq and al Sham which recently declared the establishment of a new Caliphate, or empire of Islam, and has, as a result, changed its name to The Islamic State.
How do we know that ISIS / The Islamic State is a greater threat today than Al Qaeda?
Here are just 6 reasons:
  • While Al Qaeda attracted foreign fighters to wage jihad in Afghanistan and Iraq, its recruitment figures never came close to the thousands that have been so rapidly drawn to fight in Syria and Iraq. The problem is so severe that Attorney General Eric Holder just yesterday had to publicly request his European counterparts do something to stem the flow of fighters.
  • Al Qaeda was predominantly successful in bringing Arab Muslims from the Middle East to fight in wars in their own region or in South Asia. But unclassified reports, and ISIS’ own videos, confirm that it is having an unprecedented success in attracting Muslim men from the West to go fight Jihad. Young men who – if they survive the current fight – will likely return back home to America, the UK, or elsewhere in the West, as hardened jihadis skilled in infantry tactics and in employing improvised explosive devices.
  • Although Al Qaeda was sheltered by the fundamentalist Taleban government in Afghanistan – with bin Laden strategically ensuring that his commanders’ daughter married into Taleban families – as an organization Al Qaeda never controlled a whole country. With the Blitzkrieg assault of ISIS fighters capturing city after city in Iraq in recent weeks and then declaring a new Caliphate, ISIS is on the cusp of functioning as a de facto country, a Jihadi Nation. Al Qadea almost always acted like a terrorist group and less like an insurgency, the important distinction being that insurgencies hold territory in daylight. ISIS, however, is a fully fledged insurgency that has captured city after city and is functioning as a quasi state.
  • With other regional jihadi commanders, such as the former head of the Al Nusrah front, swearing bayat (loyalty) to ISIS we see the open confirmation of the reality that Al Qaeda’s brand has been overtaken. This is the kind of international operational recognition Al Qaeda always wanted and tried desperately to obtain but never managed too. And ISIS has succeeded to become a multinational jihadi authority in a matter of weeks as opposed to years.
  • Bin Laden, and the current leader of Al Qaeda, Ayman al Zawahiri, always understood the importance of propaganda and information warfare, especially after the American jihadi Anwar al Awlaki took over editorship of Inspire magazine. But they never came close to the sophistication and media savvy of ISIS with is whirlwind establishment of a Social Media presence. Not only is ISIS filming and distributing the standard jihadi footage of its vicious attacks but also video of the mass murders of its prisoners. More importantly it is also disseminating more subtle and softer narratives via Twitter and other channels in ways that Al Qaeda never did.
  • ISIS has capabilities that exceed even the wildest dreams of the original founders of Al Qaeda. After capturing the city of Mosul and the raiding the local government coffers, it now has over $400 million at its disposal. The 9/11 attacks only cost Al Qaeda $500,000. ISIS has funds now adequate to at least 800 9/11 attacks. Add to that all the latest US military hardware it has captured and the older Syrian Scud missile it also paraded openly for all the world to see last week , and it is clear ISIS and Al Qaeda are in totally different leagues.
For all these reasons, and many more, ISIS poses a significantly bigger threat than Al Qaeda ever did. A threat not only to Shia-controlled states like Iraq or Syria. ISIS has made its plan clear . It is reestablishing the theocratic empire of Islam, the Caliphate, that was dissolved after WWI, in 1924, by the secularizing President of the new Republic of Turkey, Kemal Ataturk. They are driven by an ideology that is absolutist and global. After taking out the “Near Enemy” in Syria and Iraq, they wish to kill other apostates, others they deem to be false Muslims, be it King Abdullahh II of Jordan, or the new president of Egypt, retired General Sisi who has vowed to destroy the Muslim Brotherhood, the ideological cousins of ISIS and Al Qaeda.
Read more at Breitbart
Sebastian Gorka, Ph.D. is the Major General Matthew C. Horner Distinguished Chair of Military Theory at the Marine Corps University and the national security and foreign affairs editor of the Breitbart News Network.

Expressions Of Solidarity With ISIS In The West

from MEMRI’s Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM) June 30, 2014:

In April 2013, a rift was created in the global jihadi movement when the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI) announced that it was expanding into Syria and that it was changing its name to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Following this announcement, another jihadi organization in Syria, Jabhat Al-Nusra (JN), rejected ISIS’s authority, remaining loyal to Al-Qaeda leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri. ISIS even challenged Al-Zawahiri himself, refusing to follow his instructions to restrict itself to operating in Iraq. In early 2014, the rift escalated to violent conflict – ISIS versus JN and other jihadi organizations in bothIraq and Syria.

Having taken control of large areas of Iraq in recent months, ISIS is now enjoying increasing shows of solidarity from the Middle East and from across the Muslim world – and also from Western countries. Several factors contribute to its popularity, among them its jihad against the Americans in Iraq prior to its expansion into Syria, when it was ISI; its current struggle against Iraq’s Shi’ite government and its security forces – perceived as apparatuses for Shi’ite suppression of Sunnis; and its war against the Alawi Assad regime, which is an ally of the Shi’ites. ISIS’s activity on these fronts has helped bolster its image as the spearhead in the war against the enemies of Islam within and without the Muslim world, and raised its stature among supporters of global jihad.

Further adding to its popularity are ISIS’s achievements on the battlefields of Iraq and Syria, and its image as the only organization today that is actualizing authentic Islamic ideals and striving towards establishing the Islamic idea of a greater caliphate. It casts itself, and its propagandists depict it, as a legitimate sovereign body implementing shari’a law in areas under its control, and spreading Islam by means of jihad, thus forming the core of this future caliphate. Recently, ISIS spokesman Abu Muhammad Al-‘Adnani even called on Al-Qaeda to swear fealty to his organization, because the “state” it embodies supersedes any organization.[1]

Sympathy for ISIS extends also to its leader, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, who is seen by the organization’s fans as the legitimate leader of all Muslims. This is because of his religious education, his lineage, and his jihadi past. As a challenger to Al-Zawahiri, he is considered more charismatic and more capable of leading the Muslim ummah towards the longed-for caliphate. Thus, under Al-Baghdadi’s leadership, ISIS is emerging as an alternative to Al-Qaeda, and is seen as working diligently to actualize the Muslims’ goals without Al-Qaeda’s religion-based reservations about, for example, imposing the jizya poll tax on Christians or conducting mass killings of Shi’ites.

The persecution of ISIS, even by Al-Qaeda, adds to its status in many circles as an “underdog” fighting for the goals of Islam and the good of all Muslims. Additionally, its highly efficient propaganda apparatus circulates videos and publications via jihadi forums and social media, praising itself and criticizing its rivals and opponents.

Westerners Joining And Promoting ISIS

The Westerners who are leaving their home countries to join ISIS in its fight in Iraq and Syria also add to the organization’s prestige, both inside and outside the Muslim world. These volunteers are widely covered by the media in their own countries, and each new arrival also receives a fanfare in the organization’s local press outlets and social media; these volunteers themselves are usually very active users of social media, communicating with friends and family back home as well as followers and engaging in their own efforts to promote and recruit for the organization in the West.  

Further evidence of its sweeping popularity was the June 19, 2014 “One Billion Muslims Support ISIS” campaign, which urged ISIS sympathizers worldwide to express their support for the organization on  Friday, June 20, and even devised a special Twitter hashtag for the purpose. The campaign elicited considerable response from supporters in numerous participants, who posted images and videos expressing their support for ISIS.[2]

This Western support for ISIS is crucial to the group’s propaganda efforts; in addition to swelling the ranks of its fighters and bringing in funds and logistical support, it increases its prestige and deters its rivals.

Elements Used In Expressions Of Support For ISIS

These expressions of solidarity with ISIS on social and other media use common ISIS symbolism. They include posters of support for it and for Al-Baghdadi; the use of the slogan baqiya wa-tatmaddad, “will remain and spread”;[3] the black tawhid flag, widely used by other global jihad elements; and ISIS nasheeds, or Islamic songs.

Other expressions of solidarity include: photos of ISIS posters next to Western landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower in Paris, Big Ben in London, the Atomium building in Brussels, and the Coliseum in Rome; photos of ISIS posters alongside Western passports; and other images shared on social media. All these add to ISIS’s image of an organization on the rise, and may also indicate its expansionist ambitions.


Tawhid banner used by ISIS


A poster supporting the “One Billion Muslims” campaign (Source: Twitter.com/Minbar_s, June 19, 2014)

This report will present examples of support for ISIS from the West. A future report will present similar examples of support from the Middle East and the Muslim world.[4]

U.S.

At least two contributions to the One Billion Muslims campaign came from the U.S. One was a photo of a drawing of ISIS emblem against the backdrop of the New York City skyline, and the other was a photo of a sign of support for ISIS taken in downtown Chicago.


Source: Twitter.com/truthsMaster, June 20, 2014.


Sign reads: “The soldiers of the #Islamic State in Iraq and Syria will soon pass through here… ” June 20, 2014. Source: Twitter.com/msn291.

Read more at MEMRI

‘You’re Dangerous!': Sparks Fly Between ‘Hannity’ Panel on Radical Islam

Fox News Insider:

On a special Hannity, Sean welcomed a panel of national security experts and commentators to examine the rise of radical Islam.

Sean asked Michael Ghouse, from the America Together Foundation, if he thinks enough moderate Muslims are speaking out against extremists who are hijacking his religion.

“They’re not loud enough. We need to gather momentum. Shows like yours have given voices to moderate Muslims like me,” he said.

Things quickly escalated when Fox News contributor Tamara Holder blasted Act for America President Brigitte Gabriel as the “most dangerous person in society.” [Tamara begins at 9 min. into the video and Jamie Glazov gives a a fantastic rebuttal at about 12 min.]

“To say things like moderate Muslims are ‘supposedly’ not terrorists, ‘supposedly’ are not dangerous – the majority of Muslims in this country and in this world are safe, loving people who want peace. Those Nigerian girls were Muslims as well,” Holder said.

Gabriel defended her stance, saying, “I’m not saying the majority of Muslims are terrorists. […] The terrorists are only 15 to 25 percent.”

Holder shot back, saying that percentage is much lower and charged Gabriel with spewing hate.

Go to 32 minutes into the video to see Jamie Glazov courageously stand up to Mike Gouse and Tamara Holder when they try to prevent him from criticizing Islam. 

 

Salafi-Jihadists: “A Persistent Threat” to Europe and America

The Dutch-Turkish jihadist known as Yilmaz (center) poses with fellow jihadists in Syria.

The Dutch-Turkish jihadist known as Yilmaz (center) poses with fellow jihadists in Syria.

by Soeren Kern:

The other key reason for the growing threat, the report says, is due to American disengagement and a significant scaling back of counterterrorism efforts.

“A complete withdrawal of U.S forces from Afghanistan by 2016 could seriously jeopardize U.S. security interests…. The United States should also consider a more aggressive strategy…. The failure to weaken… jihadist groups will likely have serious repercussions for the United States.” — RAND report.

The European report also calls attention to the misuse of charities and other non-profit organizations to collect funds for terrorist entities.

In keeping with strict conformity to European multiculturalism and moral relativism, the European Union refused to classify two of the most high-profile terrorist attacks in 2013 as “religiously inspired terrorism.”

The threat to Europe and the United States from Islamic terrorism is serious and growing, and new attacks with unexpected targets and timings are increasingly likely, according to two new reports that provide insights and predictions about the threats posed by al-Qaeda and other Salafi-jihadist groups.

The reports — one by the US-based RAND Corporation and another by the EU-based Europol — show that al-Qaeda and related jihadist groups are evolving, splintering and morphing, and that the number of Islamic militants, especially from Western countries, is growing apace.

Taken together, the two reports thoroughly dispute claims by members of the Obama Administration and other policymakers that al-Qaeda has been severely weakened and no longer poses a major threat to the West.

The first report, entitled, “A Persistent Threat: The Evolution of al-Qaeda and Other Salafi Jihadists,” was prepared for the U.S. Defense Department and published on June 4 by the RAND Corporation, a public policy think tank based in California.

As the title implies, the report focuses on the Salafi-jihadist movement, a particular strand of militant Sunni Islamism which emphasizes the importance of returning to a “pure” Islam: that of the Salaf (an Arabic term which means “ancestors” or “predecessors” and refers to the first three generations of Muslims, including Mohammed and his companions and followers).

Salafi-jihadist groups are actively seeking to establish an Islamic caliphate — a theocratic Muslim empire governed by Islamic sharia law — to bring about the unification of the entire Muslim world, and, according to their writings, ultimately the subjugation of the entire globe. These groups believe that violent jihad to achieve this objective is a personal religious duty for every Muslim.

The report documents how the broader Salafi-jihadist movement has become more decentralized among four tiers: 1) core al-Qaeda in Pakistan; 2) formal affiliates that have sworn allegiance to al-Qaeda; 3) Salafi-jihadist groups that have not sworn allegiance to al-Qaeda, but are committed to establishing an extremist Islamic emirate; and 4) inspired individuals and networks.

Between 2010 and 2013, the report says, the number of al-Qaeda-sympathizing Salafi-jihadist groups has increased to 49 from 31; the number of jihadist fighters has doubled to 100,000; and the number of attacks by al-Qaeda affiliates has tripled to roughly 1,000 from 392.

The most significant threat to the United States, the report warns, comes from terrorist groups operating in North Africa, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Iraq and Syria, the location that has seen the greatest growth in the numbers of jihadist groups and militants.

Libya represents the most active sanctuary for Salafi-jihadist groups in North Africa, and Syria the most significant safe haven for groups in the Levant. Egypt is the one country where Salafi-jihadist groups have lost ground, the report says, due to a concerted effort by Egyptian military leaders to target these groups in the mainland and on the Sinai Peninsula. [Claims by Egyptian military officials that the Sinai Peninsula is under their complete control are being disputed by recent media reports suggesting that jihadists still hold considerable sway there.]

One reason for the increase in Salafi-jihadist groups, fighters and attacks, the report says, is the weakness of governments across North Africa and the Middle East. Weak governments have difficulty establishing law and order, which allows militant groups and other sub-state actors to fill the vacuum.

Another key reason for the growing threat, the report says, is due to American disengagement from key parts of North Africa, the Middle East and South Asia, and a significant scaling back on counter-terrorism efforts.

Read more at Gatestone Institute

Also see:

The Muslim Brotherhood’s “Peaceful Conquest”

by Valentina Colombo:

“Political and religious terrorism began with the birth of the Muslim Brotherhood…” — Farag Foda, Egyptian intellectual murdered by Islamists in 1992, in Terrorism [al-Irhab]

Islamist movements have different tactics… but their goal is always the same: Get in and impose sharia law to establish an Islamic state.

The problem is not so much the Muslim Brotherhood as the schizophrenia of governments that one day condemn them and the next day work with them.

“What I think is important about the Muslim Brotherhood,” British Prime Minister David Cameron said on April 1, while announcing a long-overdue investigation of the activities of Muslim Brotherhood in the UK and its involvement in February’s terror attack at the Egyptian resort of Taba, “is that we understand what this organisation is, what it stands for, what its beliefs are in terms of the path of extremism and violent extremism, what its connections are with other groups, what its presence is here in the United Kingdom. Our policies should be informed by a complete picture of that knowledge. It is an important piece of work because we will only get our policy right if we fully understand the true nature of the organisation that we are dealing with.”

 

“The objective, then, is to strike terror into the hearts of God’s enemies, who are also the enemies of the advocates of Islam…” — Sayyid Qutb, chief ideologue of the Muslim Brotherhood in the 1950s and 1960s.

The Egyptian Brotherhood’s reaction, published on its English website, was immediate:

The Muslim Brotherhood has always had a perfectly reputable and verifiable history record and a correct understanding of religion ever since it was founded, more than 86 years ago. The group is ready and willing to cooperate with all efforts to understand its beliefs, policies and positions. It also denounces all media campaigns that try to demonize the group and link it to violent incidents which it condemned in no ambiguous terms at the time, the most recent of which was the attack on a tourist bus in Taba (in Egypt’s Sinai peninsula) in February 2014.[...]

The Brotherhood’s press release also pointed out the long-standing relationship between the Muslim Brotherhood and the UK:

First: The Brotherhood was surprised at the latest remarks, since all successive British governments had always been the most expertly informed about the group’s positions and peaceful approach. The group has not and will not change its principles or approach no matter how big or small it becomes, notwithstanding all the injustice it suffers, the cold-blooded murders and arbitrary arrests of its members.

Second: The group’s principles and ideology, which it has been teaching its members for more than eighty years in all parts of the world, from East to West, have been announced, published and thoroughly researched and studied by many Muslim and non-Muslim scholars, researchers and research centers all over the world – all of which affirmed, time and time again, that the group’s approach is perfectly peaceful and that all its methods are non-violent.

Third: The behavior and actions of all those who subscribe to the group’s principles and teachings, all those who belong to the Brotherhood, are evidently exemplary in compliance with the laws and regulations of the countries where they reside, and even in serving the countries where they are raised [...]

The Muslim Brotherhood has indeed had a long history of relations with Britain. In 2010, Mark Curtis publishedSecret Affairs: Britain’s Collusion with Radical Islam, a well documented essay that could save David Cameron a lot of research work. Curtis writes,

By 1942 Britain had definitely begun to finance the Brotherhood. On 18 May British embassy officials held a meeting with Egyptian Prime Minister Amin Osman Pacha, in which relations with the Muslim Brotherhood were discussed and a number of points were agreed. One was that ‘subsidies from the Wafd [Party] to the Ikhwani el Muslimin [Muslim Brotherhood] would be discreetly paid by the [Egyptian] government and they would require some financial assistance in this matter from the [British] Embassy.

A British embassy report from Cairo in late 1951 stated that the Brotherhood ‘possess[es] a terrorist organisation of long-standing which has never been broken by police action’, despite the recent arrests. However, the report otherwise downplayed the Brothers’ intentions towards the British, stating that they were ‘planning to send terrorists into the Canal Zone’ but ‘they do not intend to put their organisation as such into action against His Majesty’s forces’. Another report noted that although the Brotherhood had been responsible for some attacks against the British, this was probably due to ‘indiscipline’, and it ‘appears to conflict with the policy of the leaders’. (emphasis added)

Curtis’s analysis therefore emphasizes the cooperation and, more importantly, the relativistic approach of the British government to movement founded by Hasan al-Banna.

Read more at Gatestone Institute

 

14 Islamist Incidents Since Tony Blair’s Landmark Speech

 

Iraqi elections saw renewed Sunni-Shiite violence. (Photo: © Reuters)

Iraqi elections saw renewed Sunni-Shiite violence. (Photo: © Reuters)

BY ELLIOT FRIEDLAND:

On April 23, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair gave a keynote speech in London in which he described Islamic extremism as a global phenomenon that threatens almost every region of the world. Since he gave that speech, there have been numerous atrocities and aggressions committed by Islamists across five continents.

1. In the U.S. in Pennsylvania, a Muslim man murdered his pregnant wife in a fight over her refusal to wear what he regarded as sufficiently Islamic dress. It is widely regarded as an honor killing.

2. In Nigeria, 236 schoolgirls abducted by the terrorist group Boko Haram in Nigeria remain in captivity. They have been sold into sex-slavery, forcibly married to the mujahideen for the price of $12 each. An international grassroots campaign has been building to pressure the Nigerian government to do more to bring about their release. But, as Nick Cohen wrote in the Guardian, “Boko Haram is a vile manifestation, yet the liberal press stays silent, fearful of ‘demonising the other.’ ” Maajid Nawaaz of the Quilliam Foundation tweeted his fury at this Guardian article that described “mass-marriages” rather than mass rape in its headline on the story.

3. While the girls remained in captivity and efforts to find them increased, Boko Haram took advantage of the situation and massacred 300 people in an undefended town. The soldiers that would normally have defended it were redeployed north to join the search.

4. Nor is kidnapping girls into sex-slavery a specific tactic of Boko Haram. A new study has revealed that every year hundreds of Christian and Hindu girls, mostly prepubescent, are abducted, beaten, raped and forced to marry their captors and converted to Islam. Over Easter, an eight-year old Christian girl was raped by three Muslim men. The girl’s father was kidnapped and forced not to press charges about two of the attackers, while the third was released.

5. In China, a bomb and knife attack in the regional capital of Xinjiang province killed three and wounded 79. The Chinese government has said the attack was carried out by Islamic Uighur separatists. Tony Blair remarked in his speech that “radical influences are stretching across the whole of the central part of Northern Asia, reaching even the Western province of Xinjiang in China.”

Read more at Clarion Project

When jihadists learn how to help

Members of the Libyan Salafi armed group Ansar al-Sharia guard the gates of a hospital to protect doctors from armed youths in Benghazi on Sept. 20, 2012. (Asmaa Waguih/Reuters)

Members of the Libyan Salafi armed group Ansar al-Sharia guard the gates of a hospital to protect doctors from armed youths in Benghazi on Sept. 20, 2012. (Asmaa Waguih/Reuters)

ASL is the first truly global jihadi dawa organization.

By Aaron Y. Zelin:

Within the academic literature on global jihadi organizations there has been a major lacuna on the issue of groups evolving to become more than just violent actors; many now act as social movements, too. While no one denies this change, little has been written about it, save for smaller non-academic pieces. Thus far, there have only been examples of localized dawa (calling people to the particular individual or group’s interpretation of Islam/proselytization), social services, and proto-governance efforts, even if the organizations profess a transnational ideology and goal. However, this trend is no longer true: New evidence suggests that Ansar al-Sharia in Libya (ASL) is conducting these types of activities not just in Libya, but also abroad.

ASL has a number of identities as an organization: On the one hand, it’s a charity, a security service and a health services and religious education provider. On the other hand, it’s a militia, a terrorist organization, and it trains individuals for foreign jihads. While many jihadi organizations are involved in the latter within transnational networks and a smaller percentage are active in the former on a local level, ASL is the only global jihadi organization that has an international dawa campaign. ASL’s unprecedented reach belies the notion that the organization has only local aims, while it is in fact attempting to cultivate an international constituency based on aid and proselytization to its strict legal interpretations of Islam.

Theoretically speaking, there is now a spectrum of jihadi organizations that can be described as purely focused on violent jihad on a local or global level and that use dawa as their main organizing principle, yet still utilize violence on a local or global level. There are also mixed cases in which neither violent jihad nor dawa take precedence over the other. These categories are not necessarily static for organizations and can change depending on endogenous and exogenous factors.

Table 1. Types of Jihadi Organizations

Local Transnationally
Violent Jihad-First Gamaa al-Islamiyya, Abdullah Azzam Brigades Al Qaeda, Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham
Mixed Jabhat al-Nusra, al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, Harakat al-Shabab al-Mujahidin No known cases
Dawa-First Ansar al-Sharia in Tunisia Ansar al-Sharia in Libya

The most important trend within the global jihadi movement after the Arab uprisings in 2011 is its ability to step beyond just the terrorism box to add tools to its repertoire to expand its support from its clandestine base. While it is true that organizations such as Harakat al-Shabab al-Mujahideen in Somalia had been involved in dawa and proto-governance principles before 2011, it became more of a norm with the open spaces provided by new freedoms or liberated territories, depending on the country-specific context. More freedoms have allowed global jihadi groups from Yemen to Tunisia to Libya to Syria to evolve into multipurpose organizations.

In the context of Yemen, with al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) and its front group Ansar al-Sharia in Yemen (ASY), and even more so in Syria, with groups like J abhat al-Nusra (JN) and to a lesser extent the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), these organizations have become true insurgent forces and are relying on the population as much as the population has come to rely on them. This is partially a result of the implementation of the lessons learned from the failed takeover of territory by ISIS’s predecessor al Qaeda in the Land of Two Rivers (Iraq) last decade. It is true that ISIS has repeated its own mistakes again in the Syrian context, but in Iraq, since its re-emergence, ISIS has been a lot more adept at dealing with the local populace (though part of it also has to do with the Maliki government’s alienation of the Sunni populations, too).

In non-war zone contexts, ASL along with its neighbor sister organization, Ansar al-Sharia in Tunisia (AST), have been able to become true social movements within each of their countries. While AST was more or less a national organization from its beginning, ASL had to build out its support from its base in Benghazi to other areas such as Tripoli, Ajdabiya, Sirte, Darna and the Gulf of Sidra, among other smaller locales. This success was a result of its dawa efforts such as providing food, medical care, religious education  and other services to the poor and others. ASL has also helped fix roads and bridges, repaired homes of the needy, provided slaughtered meats on the main Muslim holidays of Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha, and mediated disputes between tribes. As part of all of these activities, it has passed out custom ASL-approved Islamic literature, highlighting the twin purpose of service and the call to Islam.

Read more at Washington Post

Aaron Y. Zelin is a PhD candidate at King’s College London writing his dissertation on the history and evolution of the Tunisian jihadi movement. He is also the Richard Borow Fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy and the Rena and Sami David Fellow at the International Center for the Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence. Zelin also runs the Web site Jihadology.net.

Jihadist Trophies of War

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To fully comprehend how jihadists can abduct over three hundred schoolgirls for the purpose of selling them into sexual slavery and how they can behead, dismember and cannibalize their enemies, these incidents need to be understood as Islamist trophies of war. Human trophy taking is an ancient and widespread practice that appears in almost every culture throughout history. Historically, the classic example of trophies of war are human body parts, most often the head, but also skulls, teeth, fingers and soft body parts such as scalps, ears and genitalia. The second most common trophies of war are women who are taken as slaves or wives. Human trophies are material status symbols of the successful warrior. The origin of the term trophy is derived from the Greek tropaion referring to arms, property, human captives and body parts captured in battle that commemorate victory over a state, army or individual combatant.  The abducted Nigerian girls are Boko Haram’s war trophies in the Islamic global holy war (jihad). The practice of sexual slavery of apostates and non-Muslim women is justified by Islamic law, as is the practice of beheading, dismembering and mutilating the enemies of Islam.

Historically, for many cultures, the most important trophy was the human head. This is true of Islam where beheading has long historical and theological precedents. The trophy head still is the Jihadist’s emblem of war, a sign of victory, martial prowess and power appropriated from the victim. It confers status and honor upon the jihadist warrior. From serial killers to Syrian jihadists, human trophy taking involves ritual behaviors that demonstrate dominance over the victim and commemorate the kill.  Disarticulated human body parts obtained from fallen enemies historically were collected, exhibited, displayed, saved or worn. In the 20th century photography became another method of commemorating victory. Photos of the killing or posing with dead enemies replaced taking the actual body part. Photos of murders are often referred to as souvenirs and photos from combat as war porn. Traditionally human trophies required actual body parts as proof of the kill. However, mobile phone technology and internet video sites have introduced a new phenomenon in human war trophies: videotaped beheadings, dismemberment and mutilation. Instead of having a necklace of ears or a belt of scalps, jihadists preserve their kills on their cell phones. Similar to other warrior contests, a rivalry over who can videotape the worst atrocity escalates.  The violent image that goes viral wins.

Videotaped beheadings and atrocities are the new trophies of war. The father of modern beheading , Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, leader of Al-Qaeda in Iraq, was notorious for beheading dozens of Iraqi and foreign hostages and distributing videos of the beheadings on the Internet. Zarqawi’s videotapes can be considered Beheading 1.0. They were formal ritual executions that involved a reading of offenses (transgressions), confession, judgment, last words, execution, praising of Allah and a statement of demands. Today, ten years later the Syrian jihadists, Afghan and Pakistani Taliban, Somali Al Shabaab, al Qaeda and Salafi jihadists around the world are engaged in Beheading 2.0, exemplified by savagery unleashed.  Jihadist beheadings have devolved into primal feral warfare with cannibalism, feeding body parts to dogs, grilling heads on stoves, playing soccer with human heads and many other atrocities, videotaped and uploaded on the internet. These murders are always ritualized even if it is just the proclamation of Allahu Akbar to sanction the violence.

This type of violence is often misinterpreted by Western analysts as deviant behavior. It is often construed as similar to the actions of serial killers who photograph their victims to relive the experience or as aberrant soldiers who were predisposed to psychopathy. Indeed most of the general public can only comprehend these horrors as the actions of the mentally ill. Beheadings, cannibalism, dismemberment is not the result of psychopathology, it is authentic Islam. Violent atrocity committed for the cause of global jihad is Islam in its natural state, unveiled, without political correctness, voices of apology or revisionist history. It is also al Qaeda’s stated ideological goal, the purification of Islam through violent struggle. Culturally sanctioned violence is not pathological it is the norm. The violence, no matter how inexplicable, is justified as purification rites to cleanse Islam from its exposure to Western influence.

Read more at Front Page

Dawn Perlmutter Director of Symbol & Ritual Intelligence and adj. Professor in the Forensic Medicine Program at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine is considered one of the leading subject matter experts (SME) in the areas of symbols, unfamiliar customs, ritualistic crimes and religious violence. She has advised police departments and prosecutors offices on numerous cases of ritual homicide and presented expert witness testimony on ritualistic crimes.

United States fueling instability in Syria

Al-Nusra-Front-afpBreitbart, By Katie Gorka, May 2, 2014:

A growing number of Syrian Christian leaders are traveling to the United States to plead with lawmakers to stop sending arms to the rebels. The most recent visitor is the Patriarch of the Church of Antioch, His Beatitude Gregorios III, who is based in Damascus.

For the first three years of the civil war, Syria’s Christian leaders have not been frequent visitors to the U.S., in part fearing reprisals when they return to Syria, but also because they have been reluctant to engage in what they see as political issues. But with the civil war now in its fourth year, they are taking a more public stance. Visiting Washington, D.C., in January of this year to speak about the war, Bishop Armash Nalbandian, primate of the Armenian Church of Damascus, said that after he witnessed the bombing of the St. John of Damascus School, which killed nine children, he did not care anymore about his own safety. He said he will now do and say anything to help end the war.

But speaking out against the war puts church leaders in a difficult position. They want to protect their congregations and their nation, but they then face accusations of supporting the Assad regime. His Beatitude Gregorios said, “Everybody asks me, ‘Are you for or against the regime?’ I tell them, I am not for or against the regime; I am not for or against the opposition. I am for stability.” The complaint that many in Syria now have is that while Assad is far from an ideal ruler, they fear more what would follow in the wake of his downfall. The Patriarch continued, “All the churches in the Middle East are saying the same thing: ‘We want stability, but Europe and the United States are ignoring us.’”

With foreign fighters flooding into Syria, concerns about worsening chaos and escalating violence are not unreasonable. An estimated 130,000 people have been killed so far in the Syrian civil war, more than 2.5 million Syrians have fled the country, and an estimated 6 million are internally displaced. In April, another Armenian Christian school was bombed in Damascus, and on Tuesday, the extremist group Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) announced it had killed two prisoners by crucifixion.

The conflict in Syria is capturing the imagination of Islamic extremists in much the same way the wars in Bosnia and Afghanistan did. According to a report issued by the Indonesia-based Institute for Policy Analysis of Conflict:

Islamic eschatology predicts that the final battle at the end of time will take place in Sham, the region sometimes called Greater Syria or the Levant, encompassing Syria, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine, and Israel. Indeed, within some extremist circles, the Syrian conflict is known as the ‘one-way ticket jihad’ because anyone [who] goes there to fight will be able to stay and see Islam’s final victory.

That may help explain why Syria has attracted an estimated 13,000 – 15,000 foreign fighters, according to the Meir Amit Intelligence and Information Center in Tel Aviv.

Patriarch Gregorios also believes that Syria’s fate has global import, but for an entirely different reason. According to the Patriarch, the future of Christians in the Middle East is at stake. In a four-hour meeting that took place between Pope Francis and the Patriarchs of the Middle Eastern churches on November 21, Pope Francis said:

Syria, Iraq, Egypt and areas of the Holy Land are still oozing tears. The Bishop of Rome will not be at peace for as long as there are still men and women of every religion, who have been robbed of their dignity and deprived of a future and all the basic things they need to survive and forced to become refugees and asylum seekers. Today, together with the pastors of the Churches of the East, we appeal for everyone’s right to a dignified life and to freely profess their faith be respected. We should never resign ourselves to thinking of the Middle East without the Christians, who for two thousand years confess the name of Jesus, as full citizens in social, cultural and religious life of the nations to which they belong.

According to Patriarch Gregorios, any future for Christians in the Middle East requires that Muslims and Christians continue to live together side by side. “The future of the dialogue between Christianity and Islam is at stake in Syria,” he said. But the growing presence of extremists is making that dialogue nearly impossible, and the fact that the United States is providing arms to rebel groups, which, in turn, end up in the hands of Muslim extremists also works against dialogue.

The civil war in Syria also has growing security implications for the United States. Jeh Johnson, who became Secretary of Homeland Security in December, told ABC News this week, “Syria has become a matter of homeland security, and we are very concerned about Syrian foreign fighters, people who are going into Syria, who are being recruited by extremists there and who then may leave Syria with a different purpose in mind.” Foreign fighters are training and fighting alongside the AQ affiliate, the al-Nusra Front, and the Islamic State of Iraq and Sham (ISIS), and the fear is that when they return home to Europe and the United States, they will bring their skills and extremism with them.

According to Ken Dilanian, writing in the L.A. TimesJohn Brennan, director of the CIA, expressed similar apprehensions before a House panel: “We are concerned about the use of Syrian territory by the Al Qaeda organization to recruit individuals and develop the capability to be able not just to carry out attacks inside of Syria, but also to use Syria as a launching pad.”

Last week, the British government launched a national campaign aimed at families of would-be fighters, encouraging them to intervene and to dissuade their young men from traveling to fight in Syria. An estimated 400 British citizens have gone to fight in Syria, while an estimated 50 American citizens have gone there as jihadis. Dilanian noted, “James B. Comey, the FBI director, has said counter-terrorism officials are trying to track U.S. veterans of the Syrian war who have returned home.”

Patriarch Gregorios said during his visit to Washington that the voice of the church now needs to be heard. Given the failure of the policies that have been tried thus far, perhaps his advice should be heeded.

Katharine C. Gorka is president of the Council on Global Security and contributing Co-Editor of Fighting the Ideological War – Winning Strategies from Communism to Islamism.

Also see:

The Muslim Brotherhood and Terrorist Organizations

by Valentina Colombo:

“[T]he organization of the Muslim Brotherhood is a terrorist organization, and anyone who asks either to reconcile with them, to join them or to ally with them is himself a terrorist.” — Refaat Saïd, leader of Egypt’s Socialist party, al-Tagammu’, and previously close friend of former Muslim Brotherhood Supreme Guide, Mahdi Akef.

It should come as no surprise, then, that the motto of Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis is also the verse singled out by Hassan al Banna: “Fight them until there is no fitnah [discord], and [until] the religion, all of it, is for Allah.” [Qur'an, Sura VIII, verse 39]

The link between the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas is clear, and confirmed by Article 2 of the Charter of Hamas, which reads: “The Islamic Resistance movement is one of the wings of the Muslim Brothers in Palestine”.

A new terror group, Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis [ABM], just officially entered the scene. Both the U.S. State Department and the British government included it, at the beginning of April, in their list of proscribed terrorist organizations.

The United Kingdom justified its decision as follows: “ABM is an Al Qa’ida inspired militant Islamist group based in the northern Sinai region of Egypt. The group is said to recruit within Egypt and abroad and aims to create an Egyptian state ruled by Sharia law. ABM is assessed to be responsible for a number of attacks on security forces in Egypt since 2011. The attacks appear to have increased since the overthrow of the Morsi government in July 2013. The group’s reach goes beyond the Sinai, with the group claiming responsibility for a number of attacks in Cairo and cross-border attacks against Israel. ABM has undertaken attacks using vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices and surface-to-air missiles. Examples of attacks for which the group has claimed responsibility include: an attack on the Egyptian Interior Minister in which a UK national was seriously injured (September, 2013); an attack on a police compound in Mansoura, killing at least 16 people, including 14 police officers (December 24, 2013), and an attack on a tourist bus in which three South Koreans and their Egyptian driver died (January 16, 2014).”

The decision taken by the British government against Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis came almost at the same time as the decision to start investigations on the activities of Muslim Brotherhood [MB] and its possible links with terrorism.

 

Terrorists from the group Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis.

There is however a link between ABM and the Muslim Brotherhood: the justification of jihad, based on the Koranic text.

Although in January 2014, after the December 24 attack — linked by the British government statement to ABM — the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood issued a declaration in which it denied any connection with ABM, Refaat Saïd, the leader of the Socialist Party, Tagammu’, said otherwise.

Saïd pointed out, during the visit of Catherine Ashton to Egypt on the eve of its presidential elections, that Ashton “wants to open channels for a reconciliation with the Muslim Brotherhood despite knowing perfectly well that Dr. Mohammed Morsi himself imported the organization of Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis and placed it in the Sinai. Morsi released many of its members from prison so they could carry out terror attacks in the Sinai region to take him back to power.”

Saïd bluntly added that “the organization of the Muslim Brotherhood is a terrorist organization, and anyone who asks either to reconcile with them, to join them or to ally with them is himself a terrorist.”[1]

Saïd, previously a close friend of Mahdi Akef, the former MB Supreme Guide, knows the Brotherhood closely.

In September 2013, after an attack on the Egyptian Minister of the Interior, Major General Ahmad ‘Abd al-Halim explained that “Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis is an organization including 15 organizations acting and working in Gaza and belonging to the sphere of al-Qaeda and Hamas.”[2]

Colonel Farouq Hamdan — an aide to former Egyptian Interior Minister — also commented that “the attack was carried out with the blessing of, and consultation between the organizations of the Muslim Brotherhood and Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, which was funded by the Brotherhood.”[3]

The connection between Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, al-Qaeda and Hamas — already on the official lists of proscribed terrorist organizations in the West — and the Muslim Brotherhood — which is already presently on the proscribed terror organizations of Russia (February 2003), Syria (21 October 2013), Egypt (25 December 2013), Saudi Arabia (7 March 2013) and the United Arab Emirates (9 March 2014) — is sometimes a direct one, and sometimes an ideological link.

The link between the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas is clear and straight, and confirmed by Article 2 of the Charter of Hamas, which reads: “The Islamic Resistance Movement is one of the wings of the Muslim Brothers in Palestine. The Muslim Brotherhood Movement is a world organization, the largest Islamic Movement in the modern era. It is characterized by a profound understanding, by precise notions and by a complete comprehensiveness of all concepts of Islam in all domains of life: views and beliefs, politics and economics, education and society, jurisprudence and rule, indoctrination and teaching, the arts and publications, the hidden and the evident, and all the other domains of life.”

It would appear rather more difficult to demonstrate the link between the Muslim Brotherhood and some markedly jihadist movements such as Al Qaeda, Gamaat al-Islamiyya — also internationally recognized as a terrorist organization — and Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis.

In 2005, Sylvain Besson published, for the first time in a Western language, a document in his book, The Conquest of the West: The Secret Project of Islamists, often referred to as “The Secret Project.”

The document, “Towards a global strategy of Islamic politics (starting points, elements, essential conditions and missions),” was found in 2001 by Swiss authorities in the house of Youssef Nada, one of the leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood in the West

similar version of the “Secret Project” was also aired in 2012 in a documentary film about the MB in the West by American journalist Glenn Beck. What is strange is that no one has given due importance to the contents of both documents.

“The Secret Project” explains the twelve starting points of the strategy of the Brotherhood in the West. For example:

“Step 5: Work to establish the Islamic state, in parallel make progressive efforts aiming at controlling the local centres of power through institutional work.

“Step 6: Work with loyalty alongside Islamic groups and institutions in various fields by agreeing on a common ground in order to cooperate on points of convergence while putting aside the points of divergence.

“Step 7: Accept the principle of temporary cooperation between Islamic movements and nationalist movements [...]“

In Step 9, jihad is finally mentioned: “Build a permanent force of the Islamic preaching and support movements engaged in jihad in the Islamic world, in different ways and within the limits of the possible….Get in touch with any new movement engaged in jihad wherever in the planet, with Islamic minorities, and create walkways, according to requirements, to support and establish a partnership. Keep the jihad on alert in the umma [Muslim community] […].”

“The Secret Project” calls for a bond, a better collaboration with jihadi movements and it would seem that strategically, leaders and members of the MB consider both jihad and jihadi movements fundamental to achieve their goals.

Read more at Gatestone Institute

Experts Warn More European Muslim Youth Are Radicalizing

Hiding in Plain Sight: Jihadi Activism on Twitter

By Roger Farhat:

Well into the new millennium, radical Islamist propaganda has found a popular platform for terror groups to disseminate their messages with relative ease, while reaching out to a wider audience than they ever could before.

This has been accomplished through access to the Web, initially by establishing networks and platforms designed for purposes that range from propaganda and news to recruiting new operatives, planning, and exchange of ideas, whilst limiting access by password restriction.

In the wake of flourishing jihadi use of the Internet, considerable effort has been invested by security agencies around the world to thwart this trend, only to yield a counter-productive result by prompting the mushrooming of multiple new outlets for every forum blocked.

In recent years, this issue has developed and evolved at a far greater rate, owing to social media platforms that enable any hardline Islamist or extremist to become a virtual activist, irrespective of hierarchy or organization. Nonetheless, jihadists who have realized the great potential of social media as a prominent and rapid means of spreading propaganda for a multitude of sympathizers, supporters, and would-be jihadists are now utilizing these platforms to reach out and target a new audience.

This new target population includes neutrals and Westerners seeking extreme adventures and experiences.

To this end, this article presents an examination of expanded jihadi activism on Twitter, and highlights the tardy U.S. efforts to counter this trend, specifically with regards to addressing Muslims in the West.

Senior Jihadists Join Twitter, Forum Members Follow Suit

Between late 2012 and early 2013, notable jihadi discussions were observed on al-Qaeda (AQ) affiliated password-protected forums regarding the importance of the online media battlefield and the emphasis on the risks inherent in its use.

Additionally, a general abatement in the participation of activists on these forums was discerned, prompting top AQ ideologue Abu Saad al-Amili to pen an essay lamenting the decline and calling upon the “soldiers of the jihadi media” to return to their (virtual) arenas.

One of Amili’s social media columns

One of Amili’s social media columns

In the essay, titled “Appeal to the Media Soldiers of Jihad: Maintain your Positions and Return to your Enclaves,” al-Amili attributed the shrinking activity on jihadi forums to the migration of members into such social media networks as Facebook and Twitter.

al-Amili’s Twitter account

al-Amili’s Twitter account

Although himself a Twitter activist (@al3aamili), in his article al-Amili attempts to motivate members to remain active on the forums. Yet, the fact that he, together with top AQ brass, has become a prominent Twitter user appears to have encouraged forum members to “migrate” to Twitter en masse instead of “maintaining their position” elsewhere.

Twitter as an Instant Relay for Booming Jihadi Activities

Serious jihadi activism on Twitter floundered for some time before eventually taking off and developing into a full-fledged propaganda arena, massively utilized by senior jihadists, actual fighters on the battlefield, and media jihadists alike.

This trend has also swept the once-wary jihadi platforms that until recently complained about losing members to the open Internet sphere. Nowadays, the majority of jihadi forums and platforms have official and unofficial Twitter accounts, most of which advertise these accounts on their main page.

The intensification of the armed conflict in Syria, where jihadists and AQ-splinter groups have flooded in from around the globe to successfully establish strongholds in various parts of the country, precipitated an expansion of war efforts to social media.

It is in this conflict that Twitter has become the ultimate intersection for jihadi propaganda and activism, where actual fighters and their followers publish first-hand statements and accounts in addition to uploading raw footage from the battlefront. Foreign jihadists who “migrated” from Western countries to Syria greatly contributed to the rise of this phenomenon, as they regularly update their friends, family, and followers on their well-being, as well as on their “holy war adventures.”

Read more at PJ Media

Also see

Spain: Kebab Shops Financing Global Jihad

by Soeren Kern:

At least 2,000 European jihadists — many from Spain — have now travelled to Syria in the hopes of replacing the Assad regime with an Islamic state governed by Sharia law.

“Clearly Spain forms part of the strategic objectives of global jihad. We are not the only ones, but we are in their sights.” — Jorge Fernández Díaz, Minister of the Interior, Spain.

Police in Spain and Morocco have dismantled a jihadist network suspected of recruiting Islamic radicals in Europe and dispatching them to “hotbeds of tension” in Syria and other conflict zones.

Spanish officials say the cell, based in southern Spain, was one of the largest of its kind in Europe and responsible for recruiting more jihadists than any other network discovered in Spain so far.

The sting operation—in which seven suspected jihadists were arrested—was conducted on March 14, just three days after Spain marked the 10th anniversary of the 2004 Madrid train bombings that killed 191 people and wounded nearly 2,000.

Officials say the latest arrests demonstrate that Spain continues to be central to the ambitions of the global jihadist movement, which says it is committed to establishing a worldwide Caliphate.

Four of the suspects were arrested in Spain and the other three in Morocco. Of the suspects arrested in Spain, one was detained in the southern city of Málaga and the other three in Melilla, a Spanish exclave in North Africa. The three suspects arrested in Morocco had all recently returned from combat in Syria.

The suspected ringleader of the cell is a wheelchair-bound Spanish convert to Islam named Mustafa Maya Amaya. Maya, 51, was born in Brussels after his Spanish parents moved to Belgium in the 1960s to look for work there. After converting to Islam, he changed his given name from Rafael to Mustafa.

 

From left to right: Mustafa Maya Amaya, Paul Cadic and Farik Cheikh, three of the jihadists arrested by Spanish police. (Image source: Spanish Ministry of the Interior)

Maya eventually married a woman from Morocco, where he lived until December 2012, when he was arrested by Moroccan police for conspiring to overthrow the Moroccan monarchy and replace it with an Islamic government.

After escaping from prison in Morocco, Maya took refuge across the border in Melilla and became a naturalized Spanish citizen. Spanish counter-terrorism officials say Maya is well known for his advocacy of extremist Islam—he once told the Málaga-based newspaper Diario Sur that he supported the way the Taliban in Afghanistan treated women there—but that until now he had not been directly linked to terrorist activities.

Investigators say Maya—who maintained close ties to jihadist cells in Belgium, France, Indonesia, Libya, Mali, Morocco, Tunisia, Turkey and Syria—is suspected of recruiting dozens of volunteer jihadists on the Internet and, after a careful selection process, sending them to join terrorist organizations in the Middle East and North Africa.

Groups benefiting from Maya’s recruitment services include the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), an al-Qaeda splinter group active in Iraq and Syria, Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), a Sunni Muslim jihadist group committed to establishing an Islamic government in North Africa and parts of Spain, and the Al-Nusra Front, a branch of Al-Qaeda operating in Lebanon and Syria, where it is fighting against the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Read more at Gatestone Institute