Congress: Terror-Tied Aliens Seeking Asylum in U.S.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security flag whips in the wind over the Karnes County Residential Center, Thursday, July 31, 2014, in Karnes City, Texas. Federal officials gave a tour of the immigration detention facility that has been retooled to house adults with children who have been apprehended at the border. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security flag whips in the wind over the Karnes County Residential Center, Thursday, July 31, 2014, in Karnes City, Texas. Federal officials gave a tour of the immigration detention facility that has been retooled to house adults with children who have been apprehended at the border. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

Washington Free Beacon, by Adam Kredo, May 22, 2015:

Congress is demanding that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) release documents detailing how many foreigners seeking asylum in the United States have been found to have ties to terror groups, according to a recent letter sent to the agency by leading lawmakers.

The letter comes on the heels of revelations by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) that at least 638 aliens seeking asylum in America have been found to have connections to terrorists.

This “recent disclosure regarding the numbers of aliens found to have a ‘credible fear’ in cases where the terrorism bar to asylum eligibility may have applied raised the concern that hundreds of known and suspected aliens with terrorist connections may be attempting to take advantage of our country’s asylum system,” according to the letter, sent by leaders of four House committees on national security, the judiciary, and government reform.

The USCIS found that “the terrorism bar to asylum eligibility may be applicable to 299 aliens who were found to have a ‘credible fear’ of persecution in the first four months of Fiscal Year (FY) 2015, and to 339 aliens who were found to have a ‘credible fear’ in FY 2014,” the lawmakers disclosed.

The lawmakers are seeking to obtain from the DHS “key documents” providing further information and transparency about the USCIS’s disclosure. They have given the DHS a June 3 deadline to respond with pertinent information.

These documents include a copy of the files on each of the aliens seeking asylum who also were found to have potential connections to terrorism.

For each of these foreigners, the lawmakers are seeking to discern “whether the alien has been released, and for each alien who has been released, whether the release decision was made by officers of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) or by an Immigration Judge (IJ) or the Board of Immigration Appeal,” according to the letter.

The lawmakers are have asked that DHS brief them about the situation.

Congress has expressed concern for years that foreigners with extremist views could exploit the U.S.’s immigration system in order to gain entrance to the country.

DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson heightened concerns in December when he revealed that two foreigners tied to terror groups had escaped to Canada after being released from custody by a U.S. judge.

The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) also has released reports that illegal aliens have been working to bring suspected terrorists into America.

The DPS report “disclosed information about multiple cases of illegal aliens or asylum refugees with terror ties entering the country through Texas,” according to Fox News.

The concerns come as Iran has stepped up its presence in Latin America, where it has stationed many agents and other officials. Lawmakers have expressed concern that Iran could plot potential terror attacks on America using resources in the region.

Also see:

Schrödinger’s Jihad

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Sultan Knish, by Daniel Greenfield, May 13, 2015:

The great paradox of the War on Terror is that we are fighting an enemy that doesn’t exist. We are told incessantly that there is no such thing as a Muslim terrorist.

There may be a tiny minority of violent extremists, but they are only a tiny minority of no importance whatsoever. And yet we’ve been at war with this same infinitesimally tiny minority for decades.

This tiny minority has killed thousands of Americans. It has the support of entire governments in tiny countries like Pakistan (182 million), Iran (77 million) and Syria (22 million). We are told that this tiny minority is no way representative of the world’s billion Muslims, and yet it’s hard to find a Muslim country that doesn’t support or harbor a terrorist group.

We were told that the problems was their governments, but the Arab Spring showed us that democratic elections lead to governments that are even more supportive of tiny minority of extremists who are somehow taking over entire countries.

Everything we’ve been told is obviously a lie. And the best evidence comes from the liars themselves.

The media is howling that a bunch of cartoonists in Texas were irresponsible for sketching Islam’s dead warlord because they should have known that Muslim terrorists would come to kill them for it. But if the media is right and Islam is a religion of peace, then why should they have anticipated a terrorist attack?

And if Islam isn’t a religion of peace, then the media has been irresponsibly lying to us and the cartoonists have been risking their lives to warn us of that lie.

The talking heads on the television insist that the cartoon contest was irresponsible because there were bound to be “some crazies” who would “take the bait”. But if Islam is no more violent than any other religion, shouldn’t it be just as statistically likely that some Christian or Jewish crazies would attack one of the art exhibits, plays or musicals ridiculing and blaspheming against their religions?

Weren’t museums and galleries exhibiting “works of art” like Piss Christ or Shekhina provoking and baiting those Jewish and Christian crazies? And since there are more Christians than Muslims in America, isn’t it statistically far more likely that there should have been far more Christian terror attacks targeting blasphemous exhibits?

We can only conclude that there is a much higher proportion of “crazies” among Muslims than among Christians. How much higher? 78 percent of Americans identify as Christians. 0.6 percent claim to be Muslims. Only 0.3 percent appear to be Sunnis, who are responsible for ISIS and Al Qaeda attacks.

There is indeed a tiny minority of extremists in America. It’s known as Islam.

What keeps the lie alive is another paradox. Call it Schrödinger’s Jihad. The more famous Schrödinger’s Cat is a paradox in which a cat in a sealed box with poison that has a 50 percent chance of being released is in an indeterminate state. It is neither dead nor alive until someone opens the box.

In Schrödinger’s Jihad, the Muslim terrorist is in an indeterminate state until some Western observer opens the box, collapses his wave function and radicalizes him. The two Muslim Jihadists were in an indeterminate state until Pamela Geller and Bosch Fawstin and the other “provocateurs” suddenly turned them into terrorists in a matter of days or weeks. It didn’t matter that Elton Simpson, one of the Garland terrorists, had already been dragged into court for trying to link up with Jihadists in Africa.

Every Muslim is and isn’t a terrorist. He is both a peaceful spiritual person who is eager to embrace our way of life and a violent killer who can be set off by the slightest offense. Like the cat in the box that is neither dead nor alive, he is both violent and peaceful, moderate and extremist, a solid citizen and a terrorist. He does not choose which of these to be or to become; we decide what he will be.

The Jihadist paradox is that the Muslim terrorist is always defined by what we do, not by what he does.

magnumphotographers5Islamic terrorism does not exist independently of the Western observer. It is not a Jihad with deep historical and theological roots within Islam, but a reaction to our interactions with Muslims.

Obama insists that talking about Islamic terrorism ‘summons’ them into being. By admitting the existence of Islamic terrorists, we ‘radicalize’ Muslims. Even the words ‘Islamic terrorism’ creates Islamic terrorists who otherwise wouldn’t exist.

The real threat is not from the terrorists, it’s from the truth.

When we tell the truth, people die. The truth turns Muslims into terrorists while the lies soothe them back into non-existence. Underneath all the academic terminology is the dream logic of wishful thinking. If we believe that Islam is a religion of peace, it will be a peaceful religion, and if we accept the reality that it’s violent, then it will become violent. Islam does not define itself. We define it however we want. Our entire counterterrorism policy is based around the perverse ostrich belief that Islamic terrorism is a problem that we create by recognizing its existence. If we ignore it, it will go away.

The lies about Islam are sustained by a deep conviction among liberals that the “Other” minorities are not real people with real beliefs and cultures, but victims in a game of power played out in the West. Islamic terrorism, like gay marriage or Global Warming, is just another step in the progressive pilgrim’s progress. It’s a problem that we caused and need to atone for in our cosmic karmic journey.

Westerners are privileged observers who have power while those minorities they observe do not. The duel between the Western left and right is taking place outside the box to determine what will be in the box once it’s forced open, while the oppressed minorities are in a state of indeterminacy in the box.

The Schrödinger’s Jihad paradox has many other adjoining boxes. Some are filled with dictators and criminals. If the progressive observer can open the box and find the root cause, out comes a good person; if the right opens the box, then out will march the terrorists, drug dealers and warlords.

The other side of the rhetoric about oppression and colonization, of punching up and punching down is the conviction that those at the bottom do not have free will or agency. If the mugger chooses to mug, rather than being driven to it by poverty, if Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union gleefully chose conquest instead of being forced to it by Western imperialism, and if the Muslim terrorist is not a helpless victim, but an abuser, then the moral imperative of the left’s worldview collapses in a heap.

If Muslims are real people who are at least as capable of imperialism, racism, slavery and destroying the planet as any Westerner, and who have been doing all of these things a lot longer, then leftists would have to accept that they are tearing down the most progressive civilization on the planet on behalf of ridiculously reactionary civilizations. Not only would they no longer be the privileged observers in control of the future, but they would have to see themselves as destroyers of what is left of the future.

The left refuses to blame Islam or Muslims because that would mean admitting that they are people.

Schrödinger’s Jihad is a child’s toy box for overgrown children who view Muslims as social justice dolls and terrorist action figures instead of people as flawed and complicated as they are. The left refuses to take Islamic theology seriously because it is incapable of understanding different points of view.

It approaches Islam as a race, rather than a religion, because it refuses to delve into what its beliefs are. Instead it chooses to see Muslims as blank slates to be filled with its ideology, as indeterminate patterns that can be reshaped into whatever they want them to be. It does not want to know what it says in the Koran, because that ruins its wonderful fantasy of Muslims as an oppressed race, rather than a creed.

dest18Lies that are based on what we want to be true are the hardest to disprove. A lie that is tied into identity cannot be touched without destroying the entire identity of an individual or a movement.

The lies about Islam run into the heart of what the left is. To the left, everything is indeterminate and everything can be reshaped. Existence flows from power and power is pitted against progress. By destroying that which exists, they can bring their dreams to life. The dream is stronger than reality.

The left doesn’t really believe that Muslim terrorists exist except when we bring them to life. The real animating force behind Al Qaeda was George W. Bush or Dick Cheney. The true power behind ISIS is Pamela Geller or the Pentagon. The Westerner opens the box and the Muslim terrorist comes out. When Western civilization as we know it is destroyed, then the left believes Muslim terrorism will end. Kill the observer and the cat never existed. Destroy the dreamer and the nightmare dies with him.

The truth is more dangerous than the terrorists. Terrorists can kill the body, but truth can kill the dream.

Talking Honestly About Islamic Hate Speech

Muhammad on a camel and Jesus on a donkey

Muhammad on a camel and Jesus on a donkey

(Are images allowed?)

History News Network, by Timothy R. Furnish, May 9, 2015:

On May 3-4, 2015, Boston University (BU) was the site of “Apocalyptic Hopes, Millennial Dreams and Global Jihad”—a conference jointly sponsored by they BU History Department, Center for Millennial Studies (CMS) and Scholars for Peace in the Middle East. The organizer and driving force was Dr. Richard Landes, eminent scholar of medieval European (Christian) apocalyptic thought and director of the CMS until its demise in 2003. This conference, the CMS’ last hurrah as it were, brought together the dozen or so American and Israeli researchers into the topics of Muslim apolcalyptic beliefs and movements in the modern world.

Landes set the stage for the conference with his introductory lecture, In which he pointed out that Islamic apocalyptic ideas might be a “bad joke” to some, but in reality they are very “bad news.” The reason so many scholars and analysts prefer the former description is a subset of the worst problem bedeviling Islamic/Middle East studies as a whole today: the fear of the charge of “Islamophobia,” in which writing or speaking about (Islamic) hate speech is branded hate speech itself.

Landes’ position—which appeared to be the majority view among the folks attending this conference—was questioned, at times vehemently and indeed increasingly vitriolically, by several participants. The argument—which has become quite tiresome to many of us in the field, frankly—was that connecting modern jihadism and Islamic terrorism to any Islamic roots would somehow impugn all Muslims and place them at risk.

This position was ably refuted by many conference presenters, especially the journalist Graeme Wood, author of the influential article “What ISIS Really Wants” (in the March 2015 issue of The Atlantic). Wood’s presentation, entitled “On Resistance to Seeing Global Jihad as Apocalyptic Movement,” discussed the fervor and frequency with which ISIS interviewees would bring up apocalyptic Islamic ideas and how this was motivating them to behead Christians, reimpose slavery and call for attacks on Rome—and the incredulous stares which resulted whenever Wood told his (liberal) journalist friends about this. Beyond that, Wood recounted how many times interlocutors actively tried to refute his data and experience, refusing to accept that any modern Muslims—even members of ISIS—really held eschatological beliefs. (My own research into ISIS led me to conclude, last summer, that it was indeed apocalyptic.)

Dr. Jeffrey Bale, of the Monterey Institute of International Studies, lent scholarly heft to Wood’s anecdotal narrative. In particular, he focused on the phenomenon of “mirror imaging” among Westerners—the tendency to assume that the other “thinks like me,” or at least not too differently (as Wood described encountering). Thus, no matter how many times ISIS or al-Qa`idah or Boko Haram or the Taliban state, unequivocally, that they are waging jihad fi sabil Allah (“holy war in the path of Allah”), unbelieving Westerners try to explain it as really being motivated by political grievances, lack of jobs, or Western meddling in the Middle East.

Others scholars brought data and solid research to bear, on topics such as: the apocalyptic beliefs of ISIS’ predecessor group the Islamic State in Iraq; the 1979 eschatological coup manqué in Saudi Arabia, perpetrated in the name of the Mahdi (Islam’s “rightly-guided one” who will, along with the returned Muslim prophet Jesus, Islamize the planet); the nascent eschatological beliefs of Nigeria’s brutal Boko Haram movement; jihadist millennialists’ use of social media; and the apocalyptic content of Hamas’ propaganda against the Israelis.

That last topic proved a major bone of contention among the Jewish folks at the conference. At least one presenter simply hectored attendees on the blindness of many fellow Jews to see the clear Islamic roots of much of Palestianian violence—while saying nothing at all about the topic of the conference: Islamic apocalyptic thought. At least one indignant academic returned the favor, upbraiding the other side for “essentializing” all Muslims as violent (which no one at this conference had done, even implicitly)—while also ignoring the topic at hand. The vacuuity of this latter position was reached when, at the final panel, a Pakistani Muslim woman stood up and pointed out that female genital mutilation (FGM) is accepted in all four Sunni Muslim schools of jurisprudence—only to be attacked by the aforementioned panelist, who argued that FGM is only an African tribal custom. When yours truly pointed out the irony that another participant had called for “non-Muslims not to try to define Islam for Muslims”—and here a non-Muslim presenter was attacking a female Muslim—I was pilloried, as well. But having long ago left academia, I mostly found the brouhaha amusing.

My own presentation was “Rejecting Millennial Time: the Ottoman Empire’s Wars against Mahdist Movements, 13th-19th centuries.” I discussed how the foremost Sunni state of all time dealt with eschatological challenges to its rule and, sometimes, legtimacy, from state (the Twelver Shi`i Safavid Empire of Iran), non-state (“lone wolf” Sufi Mahdis) and quasi-state (Yemeni Zaydi Shi`I Imams) angles. Ottoman responses ranged from the kinetic (violent force via janissaries) and political (co-opting; limited acceding to demands) to the “soft power” of propaganda and information warfare (fatwas delegitimizing self-styled Mahdis). My major point was that modern attempts to de-fang apocalyptic groups (overt ones like ISIS; quasi-eschatological ones like Syria’s Jabhat al-Nusrah) need to emulate the Ottoman example: that is, actually employ Islamic religious texts (Qur’an, hadiths, scholarly works) to undermine eschatological jihadists (as I first called for in August 2014). Simply labeling them “non-Muslim” will not do the trick.

I first wrote about Islamic apocalyptic in 1997—the year after Landes established the CMS at Boston University—as a grad student, with an article on the famous Arab Muslim historian Ibn Khaldun and his position on the Mahdi. Over the intervening two decades, Mahdism has proved to be not just a relic of Islamic history or a narrowly Twelver Shi`i belief, but a belief deeply held by hundreds of millions of Muslims (both Sunni and Shi`i) and, increasingly, the sharp edge of the jihadist scimitar (as per Wood’s aforementioned article, and my own starting summer 2014). It’s a pity that Landes’ CMS has run its course, for as the Islamic year 1500 AH (after hijrah)/2076 AD approaches, Muslim eschatological fervor—almost certainly to include jihadist leaders thinking themselves the Mahdi—will only increase.

Note: The entire conference was recorded, and should be available to view in a week or two. Watch www.mahdiwatch.org for updates.

Timothy R. Furnish holds a PhD in Islamic history; writes, lectures and consults on Islamic world issues; and blogs on Mahdism and Muslim eschatology at www.mahdiwatch.org. He is on Twitter: @Occidentaljihad 

Imam Anjem Choudary Tells Hannity That Pamela Geller Should Die

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Truth Revolt, by Caleb Howe, May 7, 2015:

On Fox News last night, Sean Hannity hosted what basically amounted to a verbal holy war between Islamic Imam Anjem Choudary and Pamela Geller. Choudary repeatedly stated that Geller knew the “consequences” for her actions, and that the consequences for her actions are death. He says that she isn’t even good enough to be called a pig. He said America was the real murderer, that all will come under sharia law, that any who insult the prophet should receive “capital punishment.”

This is a good time to remind our readers that people who talk about sharia in America are called conspiracy theorists, that Pamela Geller, who has been marked for death by Islam over cartoons, is the one being called “hateful” by our media, and that the official position of Smart People is that only a tiny few Muslims are terrorists and murderers.

As far as we know, Anjem Choudary isn’t a terrorist. Using the standard the media and the President use, he would not be counted in the “less than one percent” of Muslims who commit acts of terror or join ISIS or kidnap girls in Africa. Yet here he is on a major news outlet telling the world, as he often does, that he believes the exact same thing as the terrorists.

Nobody is a terrorist until they are. But it is clear that support for the murder of cartoonists extends beyond just the murderers themselves. Believing that those who insult Mohammed should be put to death does not mean you are in some exclusive terrorist-only club, or that you are a member of ISIS. It is not uncommon. It is a widely shared conviction. And what’s more, it’s put into practice by people who aren’t counted in that “one percent” we’re supposed to find insignificant.

Also see:

Terrorism in Africa: The Imminent Threat to the United States

Ansar al Sharia recruits receive training at a camp near Benghazi.

Ansar al Sharia recruits receive training at a camp near Benghazi.

Long War Journal, April 29, 2015:

Editor’s note: Below is Thomas Joscelyn’s testimony to the House Committee on Homeland Security’s Subcommittee on Counterterrorism and Intelligence on the threat posed by jihadist groups in Africa. 

In preparing today’s testimony, I reviewed the history of al Qaeda’s plotting against the West. A number of facts demonstrate that al Qaeda’s presence in Africa has been tied to these efforts. For instance, declassified documents recovered in Osama bin Laden’s compound show that he ordered al Qaeda’s branches in Africa to select candidates capable of striking inside the U.S. Bin Laden also ordered al Qaeda’s African branches to coordinate their work with his “external operations” team, which was responsible for plotting attacks against Western interests. Some of al Qaeda’s most senior leaders, including those who have overseen al Qaeda’s planned attacks in the West, have come from Africa. Senior al Qaeda leaders embedded in Shabaab have also trained operatives to attack in Europe. I discuss this evidence in detail in the final section of my written testimony.

Complex tribal, ethnic, and religious dynamics mean that any summary of the situation in Africa will be necessarily incomplete.  However, I will attempt to distill some themes that are important for understanding the rising jihadist threat in the continent. While there are important differences between ISIS and al Qaeda, and the two are at odds with one another in a variety of ways, they are both inherently anti-American and anti-Western. Thus, they constitute a threat to our interests everywhere their jihadists fight.

Since the beginning of the year, the ISIS branch in Libya has repeatedly attacked foreign interests. The group has bombed and/or assaulted with small arms the Algerian, Moroccan, Iranian, South Korean and Spanish embassies in Tripoli. Fortunately, these attacks have caused only a few casualties, as foreign governments pulled most of their diplomatic personnel out of Libya months ago. But these incidents show the organization’s followers are deeply hostile to any foreign presence.

Other ISIS attacks on foreigners in Libya have been more lethal and at least two Americans have been killed by ISIS’ so-called “provinces.” In January, the group’s fighters launched a complex assault on the Corinthia Hotel in Tripoli. Ten people, including David Berry, a former U.S. Marine serving as a security contractor, were killed. In August 2014, jihadists from the ISIS province in the Sinai killed William Henderson, an American petroleum worker.

Some of ISIS’ most gruesome acts in North Africa have come with pointed threats against the West. In February, the jihadists beheaded 21 Egyptian Copts. The propaganda video showing the murders was entitled, “A Message Signed with Blood to the Nation of the Cross.” ISIS explicitly threatened Italy in the video and also made it clear that they would target Christians simply for adhering to a different faith. Earlier this month, ISIS’ branch followed up by killing a large group of Ethiopian Christians.

In March, ISIS claimed responsibility for the massacre at the Bardo National Museum in Tunis. More than 20 people were killed in the assault, which targeted foreign tourists. Citizens of Britain, France, Colombia, Germany, Italy, Japan, Poland, and Spain were among the victims. Although ISIS was quick to lay claim to the museum slayings, the reality is more complicated. The Tunisian government has blamed the Uqba ibn Nafi Brigade, which is part of al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), an official branch of al Qaeda. Based on publicly-available information, it appears that the attackers may have joined ISIS, but the operation itself was planned by the AQIM brigade’s leadership.

Al Qaeda’s international network continues to launch high-profile attacks across the continent. Some of these operations directly target foreigners. Earlier this month, Shabaab, al Qaeda’s official branch in Somalia, killed more than 140 people at the Garissa University College in Kenya. The gunmen reportedly separated out non-Muslims for killing, letting many Muslims go. This shows that the organization, like other parts of al Qaeda, is very concerned about the impact of its violence in the Muslim-majority world. In this respect and others, the Garissa attack was similar to Shabaab’s siege of the Westgate shopping mall in September 2013. More than 60 people were killed, with Shabaab’s gunmen singling out non-Muslims. Shabaab’s attacks in Kenya and other neighboring countries are part of what the UN has identified as the group’s “regional” strategy. Shabaab has undoubtedly suffered setbacks since the height of its power in East Africa, but it still operates a prolific insurgency inside Somalia, while also seeking to expand its capabilities in the surrounding countries. In fact, America’s counterterrorism efforts in East Africa seem to be principally aimed at the part of Shabaab tasked with exporting terrorism throughout the region.

As we’ve seen over the past several years, al Qaeda-affiliated groups in Africa will attack American and Western interests when the opportunity presents itself.  The September 11, 2012 attack on the U.S. Mission and Annex in Benghazi and the raid on the U.S. Embassy in Tunis three days later were carried out by al Qaeda-linked groups. The Ansar al Sharia organizations in Libya and Tunisia, both of which are tied to AQIM, were involved in these assaults on America’s diplomatic presence in North Africa. In early 2013, terrorists commanded by Mokhtar Belmokhtar killed dozens of foreign workers during the siege of the In Amenas gas facility in Algeria. Belmokhtar, who is openly loyal to Ayman al Zawahiri, claimed responsibility for operation on behalf of al Qaeda.

There is no doubt, therefore, that both ISIS and al Qaeda pose a threat to Western interests in Africa. Below, I explore current trends within both organizations, highlighting some ways these international networks may threaten Americans both home and abroad. But first, I briefly look at the different strategies ISIS and al Qaeda are employing to build up their networks.

Read more

***

Subcommittee Hearing: Terrorism in Africa: The Imminent Threat to the United States

Witnesses

Dr. J. Peter Pham
Director
Africa Center
Atlantic Council
Witness Statement [PDF]
Witness Truth in Testimony [PDF]

Mr. Thomas Joscelyn
Senior Fellow
Foundation for Defense of Democracies
Witness Statement [PDF]
Witness Truth in Testimony [PDF]

Dr. Daniel Byman
Research Director
Center for Middle East Policy
Center for Security Studies
Brookings Institution
Witness Statement [PDF]
Witness Truth in Testimony [PDF]

The growing list of Muslim Student Association (MSA) terrorists – updated

668_large (1)By Creeping Sharia, April 25, 2015:

The MSA has a growing list of terrorist alumni as noted in this post, Why Muslim Student Group Concerned the NYPD:

The list is extensive, but among the MSA alumni who went on to terrorist involvement are:

  • Anwar al-Awlaki, an influential American-born al-Qaida cleric who recruited a series of homegrown jihadists before being killed by a U.S. drone strike;
  • Aafia Siddiqui, convicted of attempted murder and assault on U.S. officers and employees in Afghanistan;
  • Zachary Chesser, convicted of attempting to provide material support to the Somali terrorist group al-Shabaab and soliciting attacks on “South Park” producers for an episode in which the prophet Muhammad was shown in a bear suit;
  • Jesse Morton, convicted with Chesser of threatening the South Park producers with murder;
  • Adam Gadahn, an al-Qaida spokesman who is on the FBI’s Most Wanted List for treason and material support to al-Qaida;
  • Waheed Zaman, who was convicted of plotting to blow up transatlantic flights;
  • Adis Medunjanin, who is awaiting trial for plotting to bomb New York subways;
  • Ramy Zamzam, who was convicted in Pakistan of conspiring to carry out terrorist attacks;
  • Omar Hammami, who was indicted on charges of providing material support to al-Shabbab and is designated by the U.S. Treasury Department for his terrorist connections;
  • Muhammad Junaid Babar, who pled guilty to his support to al-Qaida; and
  • Syed Hashmi, who pled guilty to providing material support to al-Qaida.

MSA was founded in the United States in 1963 by members of the Egyptian-based Muslim Brotherhood. The Brotherhood seeks a global Islamic state and has spawned leaders of a series of Sunni terrorist groups, including al-Qaida, Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

The Muslim Brotherhood motto established by founder Hassan al-Banna is, “God is our objective, the Quran is our Constitution, the Prophet is our leader, jihad is our way, and death for the sake of God is the highest of our aspirations.”

MSA members remain faithful to Brotherhood ideology. At the closing session of the MSA West conference in January 2011 at UCLA, attendees recited a pledge, “Allah is my lord, Islam is my life, the Quran is my guide, the Sunna is my practice, Jihad is my spirit, righteousness is my character, paradise is my goal. I enjoin what is right, I forbid what is wrong, I will fight against oppression, and I will die to establish Islam.”


Update 1 via the Hayride: h/t terrortrends

  • In June 2006, Ali Asad Chandia, who had served as president of the Montgomery College (Maryland) MSA in 1998 and 1999, was convicted on terror charges as part of a Northern Virginia jihad network; he was sentenced to 15 years in prison for three separate counts of conspiracy and material support to the Pakistani terrorist group Lashkar-e-Taiba.
  • Abdurahman Alamoudi, who served as MSA national president in 1982 and 1983, is currently serving a 23-year prison sentence for his extensive international terrorist activities, which included fundraising for al Qaeda.
  • In February 2010, Aafia Siddiqui – a woman who had been captured in 2008 with explosives, deadly chemicals, and a list of New York City landmarks – was convicted of attempting to murder a U.S. Army captain while she was incarcerated and being interrogated by authorities at a prison in Afghanistan. Described variously as “al-Qaeda’s Mata Hari” and “Lady al-Qaeda,” Siddiqui had previously been radicalized by the MSA chapter at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she studied neuroscience.
  • Wael Hamza Julaidan, who served as president of the University of Arizona MSA in the mid-1980s, went on to become one of al Qaeda’s co-founders and its logistics chief. In September 2002, the U.S. governmentlisted Julaidan as a specially designated global terrorist, identifying him as a close associate of Osama bin Laden and other al-Qaeda leaders, and as a director of the Rabita Trust, which had already been designated a terrorist finance entity that supported al-Qaeda.
  • University of Idaho MSA president Sami Omar Al-Hussayen, who operated nearly a dozen Arabic-language websites for anti-American, pro-suicide-bombing clerics, was accused by federal authorities of using his academic studies as a cover for terrorist support activities. Al-Hussayen wasdeported to Saudi Arabia in June 2004 after agreeing to a deal with federal prosecutors.
  • In December 2009, Howard University dental student Ramy Zamzam, who had served as the president of MSA’s D.C. Council, was arrested in Pakistan along with four other D.C.-area men (all of whom were also active in MSA). All five were charged with plotting to join the Jaish-e-Muhammed terrorist group with plans to attack U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan; all five were convicted in a Pakistani court in June 2010 and sentenced to at least 10 years in prison.
  • Syed Maaz Shah, secretary of the University of Texas-Dallas MSA chapter, was arrested in December 2006, for his involvement in paramilitary training at an Islamic campground, where he was preparing to join the Taliban in order to fight U.S. troops in Afghanistan. Shah was convicted on weapons charges in May 2007.
  • Ziyad Khaleel, president of the Columbia College (Missouri) MSA, was a representative of the Islamic Association for Palestine (a Hamas front). He also registered and operated the English-language website for Hamas, and served as al Qaeda’s chief procurement agent in the United States during the 1990s. Among the items Khaleel purchased was a $7,500 satellite phone for Osama bin Laden. That phone, dubbed by intelligence authorities as the “jihad phone,” was used to plan the 1998 U.S. embassy bombings.
  • Anwar Al-Awlaki served as president of the Colorado State University MSA in the early 1990s, and as chaplain of the George Washington University MSA in 2001. In Washington, DC, he delivered sermons that were attended by two of the 9/11 hijackers and by Fort Hood shooter Nidal Malik Hasan. In 2002 Alwaki fled the U.S. for Yemen, where he developed ties to al Qaeda and reportedly played a role in the Fort Hood massacre of 2009, the failedChristmas Day underwear-bomber plot of 2009, and the attempted Times Square bombing of 2010.
  • Carlos Bledsoe, aka Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad, was a member of the MSA as a student at Tennessee State University in Nashville, TN. Bledsoe went on to receive terrorist training at a jihadist training camp in Yemen and returned to the US and murdered US Army Private Andy Long outside a Little Rock, Arkansas recruiting office on June 1, 2009.
  • Abu Mansoor al-Amriki, aka Omar Hammami is an American-born member of al Shahab, a Somali Islamic militant group aligned with al Qaeda. Hammami served as president of the MSA chapter at the University of South Alabama.
  • Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who would later go on to mastermind the September 11th terrorist attacks as the number 3 man in Al Qaeda, was a member of the MSA chapter at North Carolina A&T in 1986.

If anyone knows of other MSA jihadists, let us know and we’ll update the list.

More: Muslim Student Association Pledge of Allegiance: Jihad is my spirit, I will die to establish Islam

***

Update: From a CJR reader in Canada:

YOU ASKED: If anyone knows of other MSA jihadists, let us know and we’ll update the list.

Here are some names in Canada

Ahmed Said Khadr
MSA University of Ottawa
http://pointdebasculecanada.ca/ahmed-said-khadrs-radicalization-at-the-university-of-ottawa/

Ferid Imam
MSA University of Manitoba
Archive.Today (Former MSA Manitoba president Shariq Kidwai said that Ferid Imam has been a president of the association before him.)

Muhanad Al Farekh
MSA University of Manitoba
http://pointdebasculecanada.ca/update-after-deported-to-u-s-from-pakistan-former-msa-manitoba-al-farekh-appears-in-new-york-court-terrorism-charges/
https://archive.is/0lxuS

Maiwand Yar
MSA University of Manitoba
RCMP Warrant https://archive.is/kWAqF
MSA Manitoba https://archive.is/0lxuS

Geert Wilders Speech for US Congressmen at Conservative Opportunity Society

intro-geert-wilders

Geert Wilders Weblog, April 29, 2015:

Dear Friends,

It is an honor to be here, among so many colleagues. Thank you Steve for inviting me here at the Conservative Opportunity Society.

I am a politician under attack. For over ten years now, I have been living under 24 hour police protection. I am on the death list of Al Qaida. The Pakistani Taliban also want me dead and terrorists from the Islamic State in Syria made similar threats. In order to be safe, my wife and live in a safe house and have stayed in army barracks and even in prison cells, actually the same cells and beds where the Lockerbie suspects were held in the Netherlands. I am driven around in armored cars and even during TV debates in election time in my home country I have to wear a bullet proof vest. Leftist and liberal activists call me a xenophobe and a racist and the extreme right calls me a Zionist and Mossad agent because of my love for Israel.

So what did I do to deserve all this?
The reason for all this is that I speak out against the Islamization of the West. The reason is that I tell the truth about the totalitarian ideology called Islam and that I nonetheless lead one of the major parties in the Netherlands. A national poll yesterday even indicated that my party, the Party for Freedom, is currently the biggest party in the Netherlands.

But enough about me. It is not about me.
I am not the only one under attack. My country is under attack. My continent is under attack. Your country and your continent are under attack. We are all under attack. Our western civilization based on Christianity and Judaism is under attack. The whole free Western world is under attack.

And remember, we have been under attack before.
As it happens, we are gathered here this morning on a symbolic day.
Exactly 70 years ago, on April 29, 1945, two divisions of the US Seventh Army liberated the concentration camp of Dachau, the oldest of the Nazi concentration camps.
One of the American liberators wrote: “Since we saw this camp, we understood that we were not engaged in war against soldiers and officers, but against criminals.”

After the Second World War, our leaders vowed: Never again!
Never again will we tolerate anti-Semitism, political assassinations, mass murders, oppression, slavery. And they vowed that they would never forget and always remember the lessons of history.

Here is one of these lessons:
When confronted with evil, do not put your heads in the sand, but act before it is too late.

In the 1930s, most politicians in Europe had looked away. They tried to appease evil, hoping that it would react to appeasement by growing moderate. What fools they had been! And what a terrible price the world had to pay for this foolishness. Neutrality in the face of evil is evil.
But appeasement is downright suicide.

And here we are today.
Despite all the promises that we would not make the same awful mistake all over again, many Western leaders are doing exactly that. Looking away and appeasing evil.

I often wonder what part of the Koran our leaders find so difficult to understand?
Is it sura 47:4? “When ye meet the unbelievers, smite at their necks and cause a bloodbath among them”? Or is it sura 4:89, “Seize them and kill them wherever ye find them”? Or sura 8:60, “Strike terror into the hearts of the enemies of Allah”? Or is it another of the over 150 Koranic verses which call for jihad against non-Muslims? Or any of the many verses which call for the subjugation of Christians and Jews, or the murder of apostates?

We have a huge problem with Islam in the West today. First, let us look at the causes, then at the consequences, and finally at ways to solve this problem.

The Islamization process has been caused by immigration, combined with our failure to demand that immigrants adapt our values. Fifty years ago, the Netherlands had one thousand Islamic immigrants. Today, we have one million, or 6% of our population.
In the Netherlands, Muhammad is currently already the second most popular name among newborn boys nationwide and the most popular name in our three largest cities, Amsterdam, Rotterdam and The Hague. This is also the case in the Belgian capital Brussels, the Norwegian capital Oslo, the British capital London and as a matter of fact even in the whole of Great-Britain.

We failed to demand that immigrants adopt our Judeo-Christian values and assimilate into our society. And here are some of the consequences: There is little loyalty to our home countries.
A survey last November among Turkish youths in the Netherlands found that 80% do not consider the violence which groups such like IS use against non-believers to be wrong. An earlier poll showed that 73% of the Muslims in my country say that Dutch Muslims who go and fight in Syria are heroes. You have heard right: Heroes!

Of course – I repeat it wherever I go – I have nothing against Muslims. Before the death threats started I have visited almost every Islamic country and I met many friendly people. I know there are many moderate Muslims who do not live according to the violent commands of the Koran. Muslims can be moderates. But there is no moderate Islam. Islam has changed Europe beyond recognition.

I invite you to come to Europe and visit some of our inner cities. I will show you around. We will drive you around. You can see it with your own eyes. You will not believe your eyes.
Many neighborhoods of European cities no longer look European. We are confronted with headscarves and burkas, polygamy, and huge sympathy for the goals and the practices of terror groups such as Islamic State and al-Qaeda.

The floodgates of immigration are wide open.
Last year, a record 218,000 immigrants reached Europe by boats across the Mediterranean Sea.
Those who made it were the lucky ones. Many of the boats sink and the immigrants drown.
A human catastrophe is unfolding. The Mediterranean is becoming a Sea of Death.
At this very moment, there are up to 1 million immigrants, mostly Islamic, waiting in North Africa to cross the Mediterranean in shabby boats. They take the risk of drowning because they know that Europe is not sending them back once they have made it. That is why ever more people try to cross. This situation must stop.

The European Union has decided to send navy vessels to pick up the immigrants and transport them to Europe. This policy is stupid. It will encourage even more people to attempt crossing the sea. What Europe should do is to follow the example of Australia. The Australian navy pushes boats with immigrants back, out of the Australian waters. If the boats of the immigrants are too shabby, the Australians provide them with new boats with food and water, but they do not allow one single illegal immigrant to enter their country. The Australians results are excellent: fewer people try to reach Australia by boat, fewer people drown and the criminal human traffickers lose their income.

The boats also constitute a huge security risk. ISIS is using them as a gateway to Europe. ISIS recently boasted from Libya: “We will conquer Rome with Allah’s permissions.” The British Quilliam Foundation saw an ISIS document revealing that jihadis are about to sail across the Mediterranean posing as migrants on people trafficking vessels. They want to attack what they call “the Crusader states” in Europe.

The UN plan to resettle 1 million immigrants in Western nations will provide jihadis an opportunity to infiltrate Western countries, including the US. It will give terrorists the opportunity to settle in our countries without the extra scrutiny involved in obtaining a visa or a residence permit.
We should not do this. The vast majority of the European citizens disapprove of the way their governments are handling immigration. Moreover, there are plenty of other safe countries where immigrants bound for the West can go to, including the wealthy Gulf States that have almost zero asylum-seekers today.

Immigration, especially Islamic immigration, had devastating consequences. It has made our countries less safe. What this means, we witnessed last Summer in my home town, The Hague. Sympathizers of the Islamic State paraded in the streets. They carried swastikas, they carried the black flags of IS. They shouted “Death to the Jews.”
It was a truly frightening sight, bringing back memories of the darkest period in our history.
It indicates how much a once so peaceful and tolerant society as the Netherlands has changed as a result of Islamic mass immigration.

In every Western nation, there are homegrown jihadis, prepared to commit violence. ISIS calls them “city wolves.” Our media prefer to speak of “lone wolves,” but they are not alone; there are thousands of them. According to the European police agency Europol, 5,000 homegrown jihadis have left Europe to fight in Syria and Iraq.

The situation is extremely serious.
Last January, an ISIS operative said that his organization had already sent some 4,000 fighters into Europe. 4,000 city wolves are on the loose in Europe. In Germany, the Military Intelligence Service even warns for jihadis having infiltrated the German army.

In my country, the University of Amsterdam found that 11% of the 1 million Muslims in the Netherlands is prepared to use violence for the sake of Islam. That is a staggering 100,000 people in a country of 17 million inhabitants!

Our duty is clear. In order to solve the problem, we have to stop mass immigration to the West from Islamic countries. And we have to get rid of the cultural relativism.

The authorities in both Europe and America try to prevent Jihadis from leaving for Syria and Iraq.
But I say: This is wrong. Let them leave if they want to leave. But let them never return.
Blocking the exodus of those who want to wage Jihad elsewhere and not detain them is sheer stupidity. Perhaps you remember that the Jihadis who last Autumn murdered soldiers in Canada were people whom the authorities had previously prevented to leave for Syria and who were not arrested but allowed to go free on the street.
We must hasten their exit instead of preventing it. But we must never allow them to return. If you leave for jihad you lose the right to our citizenship and we will never let you come back again. This is how it should be.

In my country and the other EU member states, which signed the so-called Schengen Treaty, we have abolished all border controls between the 26 member states of the Schengen zone. This means that Jihadis from one of these states can freely travel to the others and commit their crimes there. And it has already happened. Last year a Jihadi from France, who had just returned from Syria, went to Belgium and murdered four people at the Jewish Museum in Brussels.

Without borders a nation-cannot guarantee the security of its citizens. Neither can it preserve its national identity and culture. I believe that one of the most vital things which we Europeans must do is to leave Schengen and reinstate national border control.

My friends, we are all in the same boat.
And we must do our duty.
We must speak the truth about Islam, so that our electorates be aware of the danger.
We must protect our Judeo-Christian civilization, so that their children can leave in peace and prosperity.
We must defend our borders, so that our families be safe and our nation’s identity preserved.
We must stand with Israel and all the free nations threatened by Islam.
And above all, we must be brave.
As the great Ronald Reagan said: The future does not belong to the fainthearted.

Thank you.

Admiral Warns: Potential for Islamist Raids on European Islands

Chris-Parry-640x480Breitbart, by OLIVER LANE, April 24, 2015:

The security situation in the Mediterranean will continue to deteriorate to the point where we can expect Islamist raids on A, a recently retired Royal Navy Admiral has told Breitbart London.

HMS BULWARK

Rear Admiral Chris Parry CBE, the straight-talking former Director General of the Ministry of Defence Development, Concepts, and Doctrine Centre, the government body tasked with foreseeing future strategic threats, made the comments in an interview this week as European nations gathered to discuss the sudden migrant crisis gripping the Mediterranean.

The Threat of Islam

Parry, who warned in a government paper in 1990 that Islam would replace Communism as the main threat against the West and accurately predicted the collapse of African and Arab nations during the so-called ‘Arab Spring’, told Breitbart London he regretted the government was only taking action now, and had not heeded his warning earlier. The Falklands veteran said his warnings were ignored in 2006 when he wrote a major paper on future threats, as the Labour government of the day deemed speaking about Immigration as racist.

Migrants Italy Reuters Large

Parry remarked:

“When I said these things in 2006, my political masters told me to drop it, that it was racist, but I told them it was just what came out of the analysis of the raw data.

“the government interpreted my report as having a go at immigration which was a ‘verboten’ subject in those days, it was all about multiculturalism. Any mention of immigration was considered to be ideologically incorrect. But I didn’t mention immigration, I merely said the world was heading for a migratory pattern that is on a par with the end of the fifth century”.

A speech given by Parry in 2006 at the Royal United Services Institute was reported by The Times after he said the migratory patterns that would emerge in the coming decade would resemble “the 5th century Roman empire facing the Goths and the Vandals”, as European nations experienced a process of “reverse colonisation”.

Piracy on Europe’s Doorstep

Although Parry said he stood by his comments of moving diasporas and large populations of migrants with no allegiance to their new homes destabilising nations such as the UK, he said the increasingly fragile Mediterranean was more of a threat to Europe. Libya, now an increasingly lawless state after the British-backed toppling of former dictator Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, is fuelling this change in the Mediterranean as it becomes a haven for criminals engaging in people smuggling.

Parry said at first, the switch from people smuggling as a profitable and comparatively risk-free criminal activity to piracy of the sort seen off the lawless Horn of Africa would be driven by a profit motive. He said:

“It is only a matter of time before we get crime and piracy off the North African coast. People will see it as a business opportunity and they will take it.

“People used to call them Barbary pirates, and they will come back when you have a collapse of governance if there isn’t a strong system of international control in the Mediterranean. You can compare it to what Jessie James is reputed to have said when asked ‘why do you rob banks?’ – ‘it’s where the money is’!”.

Mumbai Terror Attacks

During the last Caliphate, ‘Barbary’ pirates from North Africa grew incredibly rich by attacking European and American ships in the Mediterranean, taking the cargoes and holding the crews hostage. Many would be sold into slavery, with young white women and girls being particularly prized, while others were ransomed back at enormous profit, creating an income stream also used by the new Caliphate established by the Islamic State today.

Terror From the Sea

Parry said that isolated attacks on easily overpowered craft such as yachts could be expected soon. At least two coast guard ships have already been fired upon by Libyan people smugglers, as they used AK-47s to recapture impounded smuggling boats.

Pirates Reuters

Citing the 2008 Mumbai terror attack in which Islamist killers used inflatable speedboats to land commandos to kill over 150, Parry said terrorist groups in Northern Africa, a number of which have already sworn allegiance to the Islamic State, could launch raids against southern Europe. Such attacks were common in the 17th and 19th centuries, when Caliphate ships would raid coastal settlements in Italy, Spain, and even as far afeild as Cornwall in England to capture slaves and hostages for ransom. Parry remarked:

“90 per cent of the wealth, both personal and corporate in the Mediterranean is on the northern shore and 10 per cent is on the south. You have a demographic explosion all across North Africa, and an ageing demographic in Europe. That is all the historic ingredients for terror and crime.

“We will soon be experiencing minor hit and run attacks on remote parts of Europe, like Malta and the Greek Islands”.

Message to Policy Makers: How to Avert Disaster

It is possible for Europe and Western civilisation to forestall these attacks, Rear Admiral Parry said, even if the best chance for peace in the Mediterranean had already been lost, as the governments capable of maintaining peace in North Africa and the Levant had already collapsed in the Arab Spring. In his message to policy makers, Parry was unapologetic about the role Britain and other maritime nations like the United States, Canada and Australia had to play:

“Long term, we have to stabilise the whole community around the Mediterranean… we have to be able to hold our maritime borders, because we have very aggressive Islamism which wants to recreate the extent of Islamic lands the Middle Ages.

“If you look at the maps put out by the Islamic State, it is pretty clear what they want back. Italy, Spain. They want back what they once had. Islam is a very territorial religion.

“If there isn’t the political will or military ability to face down threats off the North African littoral, be it migration, criminality, or terrorism, then we will get progressive erosion. We will get raids on coasts, we will get yachts intercepted at sea, we will get merchant ships subject to terrorist, pirate, or criminal attack.

“The Western world needs to have more self belief in its own values, it has to hold its nerve, and we have to rediscover a lot of self-reliance”.

Praising Tony Abbott’s policy of sinking migrant ships with naval gunfire and returning people to their home countries where possible, Parry remained sceptic that the sudden tough talk about sinking smuggler boats in Europe would actually happen, remarking that sending in special forces teams to Libya would be like “putting your fingers in a mangle”.

The United Nation’s International Maritime Organisation (IMO) should be taking the lead in the Mediterranean, but he didn’t hold out much hope for their getting involved in a meaningful way either:

“If this sort of thing was happening on land, the area would be crawling with United Nations blue helmets [peacekeepers], but because it’s at sea, it is ignored. The gutless IMO always go for the low-hanging fruit like climate change and emissions control, collecting their grossly inflated pensions and doing bugger all”.

Also see:

Major Italian Blitz on Terrorist Cell Reveals Bombing Plot against Vatican

Reuters

Reuters

Breitbart, by Thomas D. Williams, April 24, 2015:

ROME, Italy– Counterterrorism police conducted coordinated raids across Italy on Friday against an Islamist cell based in Sardinia and linked to al-Qaeda, arresting eight Pakistanis and an Afghan.

Of the nine arrested, three were taken in Olbia, two in Civitanova Marche and the others in Bergamo, Rome, Sora and Foggia. The terrorist organization was mainly active in Olbia and Lazio, according to police reports.

The ideological leader of the cell, a radical fundamentalist imam living in Bergamo, was among those arrested.

The alleged terrorists are being charged with various crimes ranging from the commission of terrorist acts abroad to abetting illegal immigration.

Two of those arrested have a history as supporters of Bin Laden, while others are wanted for numerous bloody acts of terrorism and sabotage in Pakistan, including the massacre at the market of Peshawar and the Meena Bazar in October of 2009, where more than one hundred people were killed.

Intercepted phone conversations revealed the presence in 2010 of two suicide bombers in Italy, whom investigators suspect were planning a bombing attack on the Vatican. The chief prosecutor of the Republic of Cagliari, Mauro Mura, who coordinated the investigation, stated that the alleged assault on the Vatican will not, however, be charged against those arrested.

Investigators reported that the suspects said they would launch a “big jihad in Italy” against a major leader, and that conversations suggested the target might be the Vatican.

“Get ready, the bombs will explode,” is a phrase that emerged from phone records reported Friday morning by investigators. But the organization apparently abandoned the plot, after the men drew the attention of law enforcement, and the two suicide bombers quickly moved on to Olbia and northern Italy, covering their tracks. During a search in Olbia, police found a sheet of paper with the “vow of martyrdom” of one of the terrorists.

Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi downplayed the threat, noting that the planned attack “dates back to 2010 and was not carried out.” Lombardi said the threat is no longer relevant “and is not cause for particular concern.”

The arrest warrants speak of a criminal organization “inspired by al-Qaeda and other groups of a radical matrix espousing armed conflict against the West and uprising against the current government in Pakistan.”

The cell had a stockpile of weapons as well as “many adherents willing to commit acts of terrorism in Pakistan and Afghanistan, after which to return to Italy.”

Italy’s Interior Minister Angelino Alfano said the successful blitz “means that our system works” and “that ours is a great country able to dismantle these plots.”

The investigation revealed intercepted calls showing that two members of the organization were part of the protective group surrounding Osama Bin Laden in Pakistan. In a wiretap one of those arrested asked a relative of Bin Laden “how is he doing?”

The cell also reportedly facilitated the illegal immigration of Pakistani and Afghani nationals into Italy. The police report states that the organization sought “to fuel the criminal network by allocating a portion of its resources to the phenomenon of the illegal introduction of Pakistanis or Afghans onto Italian soil, who in some cases were also destined to certain countries of northern Europe.”

According to the police, to evade the rules governing the entry or residence in the country of non-EU citizens, those arrested were using simple but tried-and-true methods. In some cases they “had recourse to labor contracts with compliant employers in order to obtain entry visas.” In other cases, the organization used “false documents and fraudulent claims to seek political asylum, passing off Islamists as victims of ethnic or religious persecution.”

The organization allegedly also provided financial and logistical support to illegal immigrants: ensuring their patronage at the competent immigration offices, furnishing instructions regarding the correct statements to be made ​​to get political asylum, and providing telephones, SIM cards and personal contacts.

The unidentified spiritual ringleader of the group was a leader of the pietistic movement Tabligh Eddawa (Society of Propaganda). Operating between Brescia and Bergamo, the man proving to be an effective fundraiser among the Pakistani-Afghan community in Italy, thanks to his religious authority as an imam and teacher of Koranic studies. In one case, police discovered the transfer of 55,268 euros via courier on a flight to Islamabad from Rome’s Fiumicino airport.

More often, the imam employed the money transfer system known as “hawala,” a mechanism for the hidden transfer of funds based on a bond of trust widespread in Muslim communities in Europe. Hawala operates parallel to the traditional banking system allowing for the transferal of a sum of money abroad by delivering it to a money broker, called a “hawaladar,” and providing him with a code or password. The broker in turn contacts another hawaladar in the receiving country authorizing the disbursal of the sum, which the beneficiary then obtains by furnishing the agreed-upon password.

Known terrorists received money from the collections or donations raised by the activity of the imam arrested in Bergamo. Along with al-Qaeda, the associations “Theerek and Taliban,” “Theerek and Enifaz” and “Sharia and Mihammadi” were beneficiaries of his efforts.

The police still have nine pending arrest warrants for members of the terrorist cell. Of the suspected terrorists still at large, three are considered to certainly still be in Italy, while others are thought to have fled the country.

***

Also see:

Islamic Awareness Week in Tuscon – Univ of AZ, the MSA and ties to terror

By Rebecca Noble / The Daily Wildcat  Members of the UA's Muslim Student Association gather at the Islamic Center of Tucson on Friday afternoon to prepare for a week's worth of events for Islamic Awareness Week. Co-vice President Azba Khan (far left), Secretary Sumaiyya Zehri (center left), President Asim Zehri (center right), Co-vice President Taha Hasan (far right) and club members said they hope these events will "clarify any misconceptions" and "bring awareness to other aspects" of Islam.

By Rebecca Noble / The Daily Wildcat
Members of the UA’s Muslim Student Association gather at the Islamic Center of Tucson on Friday afternoon to prepare for a week’s worth of events for Islamic Awareness Week. Co-vice President Azba Khan (far left), Secretary Sumaiyya Zehri (center left), President Asim Zehri (center right), Co-vice President Taha Hasan (far right) and club members said they hope these events will “clarify any misconceptions” and “bring awareness to other aspects” of Islam.

Cultural Jihad, April 23, 2015:

The Daily Wildcat (an independent University of Arizona news publication) and OnIslam.net report that University of Arizona (UA) Muslim Students Association (MSA) is holding an Islam awareness campaign set to run the week of April 20-24.

Such campaigns are yearly events promoted by MSA through out the country.  A few that we’ve covered in the past include:

MSA “awareness” type events focus on proselytizing (Da’wa) and presenting Islam in a positive light.  The Islamic Center of Tucson (ICT) will be providing a tour and sermon as part of US MSA’s awareness week.  The Wildcat article mentions a UA senior who feels the negative connotation attached to Islam has been getting worse since the early 2000s.

The 9/11 Commission report references the Tuscon area and it’s Islamic terror ties, specifically in regards to Hani Hanjour, one of the hijackers who piloted the airliner that crashed into the Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001:

The fact that Hanjour spent so much time in Arizona may be significant. A number of important al Qaeda figures attended the University of Arizona in Tucson or lived in Tucson in the 1980s and early 1990s.  Some of Hanjour’s known Arizona associates from the time of his flight training in the late 1990s have also raised suspicion. FBI investigators have speculated that al Qaeda may have directed other extremist Muslims in the Phoenix area to enroll in aviation training. It is clear that when Hanjour lived in Arizona in the 1990s, he associated with several individuals holding extremist beliefs who have been the subject of counterterrorism investigations. Some of them trained with Hanjour to be pilots. Others had apparent connections to al Qaeda, including training in Afghanistan.

Tuscon, AZ  has had a history of Islamic terror related activity since the 1980s. The ICT and several of it’s members  have been linked to Islamic terrorist groups that have included Al-Qaeda and Hamas.  The Investigative Project on Terrorism reports:

Between 1985 and 1993 the Islamic Center of Tucson (ICT) is alleged to have served as the de-facto Al-Qaeda headquarters in the United States.[1] In the mid 1980s, the ICT was the US satellite office of the Mektab Al Khidmat, an organization considered to be the “precursor to al Qaeda.”[2] Several leaders and attendees of this mosque became Al Qaeda leaders. Among them, former ICT president and Imam Wael Julaidan became a senior bin Laden advisor[3] and was named a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) because of his work with Rabita Trust, an Al Qaeda funding source.[4] Wadih el Hage, whom government officials say acted as Usama bin Laden’s secretary, was convicted of conspiracy to kill U.S. nationals, conspiracy to destroy buildings and property of the U.S., perjury and murder in May of 2001.[5] El Hage, who regularly attended the ICT, told a federal grand jury that he heard ICT attendees say that dissident Muslim leaders “should be killed” as “infidels.”[6]Ramzi Yousef, the future mastermind of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing carried a fake identification provided by Al Bunyan Islamic Information Centre (AIIC) in Tucson when detained at an airport in 1992.[7] The post office box number given on their badges for the Al Bunyan Center was the same as that on the letterhead of ICT’s Al Kifah Refugee Center.[8]Abdullah Azzam, Usama bin Laden’s mentor, also spoke at this mosque.[9] Al Kifah Refugee Center and Mektab al Khidmat, the al-Qaeda linked organization mentioned above, were named as Specially Designated Terrorist organizations on September 23, 2001.[10] Al-Kifah Refugee Center was established as the American-based affiliate of Mekhtab al-Khidemat.[11]

Omar Shahin, who became the mosque’s imam in 2000, headed up efforts at the mosque to collect money for the Holy Land Foundation (HLF) and Global Relief Foundation (GRF) in 2001.[12] Specifically, Shahin told reporters that the ICT collected $7,000 for HLF in November of 2001and that he had raised money for HLF in the past. [13] Shahin served as the imam and as director of the ICT from 2000-2003.[14] HLF and five of its leaders were convicted of funneling money to Hamas in November 2008. [15] GRF was raided and shut down on December 14, 2001[16] and designated under Executive Order 13224 by the U.S. Treasury on October 18, 2002 for its ties to Al Qaeda.[17]

Former ICT president and Imam Wael Julaidan (mentioned above)  was a past president of the UA MSA in the 1980s.

Julaidan is not alone in  being involved in Islamic terrorism and holding a MSA leadership position.   Patrick Poole, in “The Muslim Student Association’s Terror Problem” (PJ Media, Aug 2010), writes:

Since its inception, the MSA has chronically been a vehicle of extremism, hatred, and incitement to violence. Its chapters host a wide variety of extremist speakers and have repeatedly raised funds for Islamic groups that have later been closed by the U.S. government for funding terrorism. For this reason, the MSA was identified in 2004 as one of 27 Islamic charities and groups in the U.S. under investigation by the Senate Finance Committee for terrorist support.

As a result of the long-time institutional extremism, the MSAs have also proved to be a fertile recruiting ground for terrorist organizations, such that a 2007 report on Islamic radicalizationpublished by the New York City Police Department identified the MSA as one of the key “radicalization incubators” for homegrown terrorists (p. 68). This dubious distinction is not without cause.

One of the darkest secrets of the MSA, certainly never advertised by the organization or mentioned in their publications, is a rather lengthy list of top MSA leaders who have been arrested and convicted on a wide array of terrorism charges, ranging from material support of terrorist groups to being actively involved in terrorist plots.

The Wildcat article closed with this statement by UA MSA Co-vice President Azba Khan …

Blindly accepting what we are told by unreliable people is the biggest mistake in society. We need to take advantage of the sources and intellect we have and challenge the ignorance in society with knowledge.

The students and faculty of the University of Arizona may need to challenge the UA MSA as to what their agenda is.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

The Muslim Students Association was formed in 1963 by members of the Muslim Brotherhood.

The Islamic Center of Tucson (ICT) real estate documents lists the The North American Islamic Trust (NAIT) as trustee.  The ICT Constitution indicates it is affiliated with the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA).  The Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Watch indicates:

Former FBI special agent Robert Stauffer headed an investigation in the 1980s of Muslim Brotherhood finances and reportedlydiscovered that the Islamic Society of North America had received “Millions and millions of dollars” through NAIT which, he says, “served as a financial holding company for Muslim Brotherhood-related groups.” The money, he says, was wired into the United States from Islamic countries, including Iran, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Afghanistan, Egypt, Malaysia and Libya.

The ISNA research report also describes examples of how NAIT played a role in the ideological takeover of two U.S. mosques, driving out moderate leaders and replacing them with those close to the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood. One of those mosques was the Bridgeview mosque who imam, Jamal Said, is one of the Allied Asset Advisers trustees listed above. A document released in 2007 by the prosecution in the Holy Land Terrorism financing case names NAIT as one of the entities that is part of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood.

Up to 1 Million Libyan Refugees Waiting to Board Ship for Europe

Yesterday, survivors of the smuggler’s boat that overturned off the coast of Libya rest on the deck of an  Italian Coast Guard ship in Valletta’s Grand Harbour. The UN estimates more than 800 people were believed to have drowned in the weekend sinking of a boat packed with migrants trying to reach Europe, making it the deadliest such disaster in the Mediterranean. (AP Photo/Lino Azzopardi, File)

Yesterday, survivors of the smuggler’s boat that overturned off the coast of Libya rest on the deck of an Italian Coast Guard ship in Valletta’s Grand Harbour. The UN estimates more than 800 people were believed to have drowned in the weekend sinking of a boat packed with migrants trying to reach Europe, making it the deadliest such disaster in the Mediterranean. (AP Photo/Lino Azzopardi, File)

PJ Media, by Richard Fernandez, April 21, 2015:

According to EU’s border chief [1], up to one million refugees are waiting on the Libyan beach to board ship for Europe. “Up to one million migrants could reach Europe from Libya amid collapsing security in the northern African country, the European Union’s border agency chief has warned.”

Frontex executive director Fabrice Leggeri said he expects asylum seekers’ crossings to skyrocket in 2015 and urged EU governments to ready themselves to “face a way more difficult situation than last year”.

“We are told there are between 500,000 and one million migrants ready to leave from Libya,” Leggeri told Italian news agency Ansa. “We have to be aware of the risks”.

One of the more interesting aspects of this flood of human misery is that it is not entirely spontaneous.  Jihadi groups are doing their best to encourage it.

With the country now locked in a three-way power-struggle pitting government troops against different Islamist groups including Islamic State (Isis) affiliates, fears have been raised that extremists could mingle with the hundreds of migrants crossing by boat every week or drastically increase the number of crossings to strain EU border forces.

“We have evidence that migrants have been forcibly boarded on vessels at gunpoint,” Leggeri said. “I do not have elements to say they were terrorists but there are worries among states.”

That would not be surprising. In 2004 [2] Europe agreed to pay Muhammar Gaddafi four billion pounds a year in exchange for a promise to halt people smuggling to Europe.

Experts have also drawn links between the massive rise in would-be migrants and a so-called ‘deal in the desert’ struck by Tony Blair in 2004 – which saw the late Muammar Gaddafi agree to crack down on human traffickers as well as renouncing Libya’s possession of WMDs and decommissioning the country’s chemical and nuclear weapons programs.

In 2008 Gaddafi sought to stiff the European Union for £4.1 billion a year in return for halting the flows of migrants in and out of Libya. …

As Blair’s much touted ‘deal in the desert’ turned sour, Gaddafi gave people smugglers in Zuwara the green light to resume their trade and the migrant routes have flourished ever since.

The people-smuggling networks once controlled by the Duck of Death have almost certainly been taken over by the Jihadis, who have turned them to their own purposes. This view is not yet widely shared. The general perception is that the refugee flood is a “humanitarian crisis.” The Washington Post [3], for example, exhorts the Europeans to take more migrants to solve the problem. “Europe needs to take a lead role in solving the African migrant crisis.”

Only the European Union can help these migrants, especially once they take to the sea. Shamefully, however, governments under pressure from domestic anti-immigrant parties have shrunk from the task. Last year Italy undertook its own, much-praised operation to rescue people from boats, saving many; but it was scaled back in October after other governments declined to join in and some complained, wrongheadedly, that the effort itself might be attracting migrants. In recent months a much smaller E.U. search-and-rescue mission has been limited to Italy’s territorial waters, making it far more likely that sinkings and other accidents will lead to mass deaths.

Thankfully, the weekend disaster appears to have galvanized — or maybe shamed — E.U. governments, who agreed to hold a summit meeting Thursday to consider solutions. The starting point should be obvious: the resumption of a large-scale search-and-rescue operation like that abandoned by Italy. But European leaders should also consider providing more legal ways for African refugees to seek refuge in their countries, without having to board smuggling boats; and they should consider more forceful steps to combat the smugglers and to help restore order in Libya. What shouldn’t be an option is continuing to ignore the humanitarian crisis spilling into the Mediterranean.

While the refugee flood is most certainly a humanitarian tragedy, it is very probably a deliberate component of the rapid advance of Islamist forces through North Africa, Arabia and the Levant.  The probable reason why the establishment can’t see this is because they’ve willed themselves not to see the war.  The constant mantra is that there is no war on terror; that the enemy is nothing to do with Islam.  See the war and you can see the tactic. In fact, it is reminiscent of the old Nazi 1940 method [4] of driving refugees onto the roads before them to tie up the French [5] while the Panzers advanced behind them.

France’s vaunted Maginot Line failed to hold back the Nazi onslaught and the German Blitzkrieg poured into France. (see Blizkrieg, 1940) Thousands of civilians fled before it. Traveling south in cars, wagons, bicycles or simply on foot, the desperate refugees took with them what few possessions they could salvage. It wasn’t long before the roads were impassable to the French troops who were headed north in an attempt to reach the battlefield. …

Its aim was to create panic amongst the civilian population. A civil population on the move can be absolute havoc for a defending army trying to get its forces to the war front. With so much focus placed on the frontline, if this could be penetrated then the ensuing doubt, confusion and rumour were sure to paralyse both the government and the defending military.

This was very effective and France fell in 40 days. The 2015 boat people tide is the equivalent of the 1940 stream of refugees. That Blitzkrieg kind of comparison may be unfamiliar ancient history [6] to today’s leaders. But they may still be familiar with the more current term of ethnic cleansing [7], which is really an updated term for an older concept, the displaced person [8] (DP). One of the interesting characteristics of the recent wars in Islamic regions is how many DPs they’ve generated [9].

“The number of refugees, asylum seekers and internally displaced people worldwide has exceeded 50 million for the first time since World War II, a United Nations report shows.” The biggest number of refugees come from Syria, Afghanistan, Somalia, Sudan and South Sudan, according to a UNHCR report [10]. “The top 10 source countries of refugees combined accounted for 78 per cent of all refugees under UNHCR’s mandate. The top three alone – the Syrian Arab Republic, Afghanistan, and Somalia – made up 52 per cent. Half of these 10 countries, it should be noted, are in sub-Saharan Africa.”

Chaos, in ISIS’ view, is a weapon and as the refugee report shows, it is a massive weapon. Perhaps not coincidentally, deliberate population displacement largely coincides with Jihadi doctrine. The Management of Savagery [11], which is the Mein Kampf of the ISIS movement, advises the destruction of ordinary life.  It

argues that carrying out a campaign of constant violent attacks in Muslim states will eventually exhaust their ability and will to enforce their authority, and that as the writ of the state withers away, chaos—or ‘savagery’—will ensue. Jihadists can take advantage of this savagery to win popular support …

Management of Savagery advocates destroying people’s lives so they are left with no choice but to build a new world — the Caliphate — because the old world is gone. The Management of Savagery [12] is going to ride the wave of chaos to reestablish the return of true Islam to power.

We must make this battle very violent, such that death is a heartbeat away … When savagery happens in several regions … a spontaneous kind of polarization begins to happen among the people who live in the region of chaos. The people, seeking security, rally around the great personages of the country or a party organization or a jihadi organization or a military organization composed of the remainders of the army or the police of the regimes of apostasy.

Set against a highly sophisticated, albeit perverted strategy that one might call deliberate “inhumanitarianism” and carried out by iron-willed terrorists, the half-baked liberal ideology in opposition to it has all the force of wet spaghetti. In many ways the image of jihadi leaders as illiterate rubes in comparison to the sophisticated likes of Hillary Clinton is a complete inversion of the truth. The jihadi enemy is quick, intelligent and ruthless by comparison to the EU bureaucracy and the geniuses of the Obama administration.  Despite the disparity in material resources, the contest is closer than one might think.

Ohio Terror Suspect Was Caught Lying to FBI Two Days After Becoming Naturalized U.S. Citizen

Image: Abdirahman Sheik MohamudThe FBI allowed Abdirahman Sheik Mohamud to obtain a passport, travel to Syria to fight with al-Qaeda, and return to conduct terror attacks.

PJ Media, by Patrick Poole, April 21, 2015:

An Ohio man indicted by a federal grand jury on terrorism support charges last week,  was questioned by the FBI two days after becoming a naturalized U.S. citizen.

During that questioning, he was caught lying about his identity.

Several days later, Mohamud applied for a U.S. passport and was allowed to travel to Syria. There, he fought and trained with Jabhat al-Nusra — an official al-Qaeda affiliate — and then was allowed to return to the U.S. where he planned to launch terror attacks inside the U.S.

These remarkable revelations of FBI failure emerged from documents unsealed by the federal court and from last week’s indictment.

According to the indictment (p.2), Mohamud became a naturalized U.S. citizen on February 18 last year, and applied for a U.S. passport a week later:

On or about February 18, 2014, MOHAMUD became a naturalized U.S. citizen. On or about February 25, 2014, MOHAMUD submitted his U.S. passport application.

But as the Wall Street Journal reports today, the FBI interviewed Mohamud on Feb. 20th — two days after his naturalization ceremony — during which FBI agents caught him lying about his identity:

The FBI first spoke to Mr. Mohamud more than a year ago, but that intervention didn’t appear to prevent the native of Somalia from traveling overseas. During the Feb. 20, 2014, interview, federal agents said Mr. Mohamud tried to lie about his identity. He first told investigators he was his older brother, Abdifatah Aden, who had already left the U.S. in 2013 and was believed to be fighting in Syria on behalf of Nusra Front and raising money for the cause, according to court documents.

“When challenged about his truthfulness, he admitted his true identity,” Mr. Flowers of the FBI wrote in a court affidavit. It wasn’t clear from court documents how agents reacted to Mr. Mohamud’s reversal.

And yet, Mohamud was allowed to obtain a U.S. passport and travel to Turkey six weeks later, where he joined up with terror operatives after crossing the border into Syria.

After Mohamud returned to the U.S. last June, the newly unsealed court documents claim that he then began weapons training with others in the Columbus area. The Wall Street Journal article continues:

Three months after he returned from training with violent extremists in Syria, a 23-year-old Ohio man hosted a shooting group at a local gun range, federal authorities allege in newly unsealed court papers.

Abdirahman Sheik Mohamud rented a shooting lane in the Columbus area last September, court papers say. When a range officer offered to instruct him and his two associates how to use their borrowed pistol, Mr. Mohamud allegedly declined, implying he could teach the others.

“Organizing weapons training is consistent with individuals who previously obtained training from … training camps to, upon return to their homeland, seek to recruit a group of young male adults in order to lead them to be like-minded jihadist believers prepared to fight,” Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent Stephen Flowers wrote in court documents.

For eight months until his arrest in late February this year, Mohamud was allowed to roam freely within the U.S. and train others in handling firearms.

Here is a timeline of events:

Feb. 18, 2014: Mohamud becomes a naturalized U.S. citizen.

Feb. 20, 2014: The FBI interviews Mohamud, during which time he is caught lying about his identity. The same day he communicates with his brother already in Syria about his travel plans to join him.

Feb. 25, 2014: Mohamud applies for a U.S. passport.

April 8, 2014: He purchases a one-way airline ticket with a stopover in Istanbul, Turkey.

April 18, 2014: He departs the U.S. and arrives in Turkey the following day.

June 3, 2014: His older brother, Aden, is reported killed fighting in Syria.

June 8, 2014: He returns to the U.S.

Approx. Sept 2014: He trains others in handling weapons at a Columbus firing range.

Feb. 25, 2015: Mohamud is arrested on state terrorism support charges.

April 16, 2015: He is indicted by a federal grand jury.

Even with an FBI informant among Mohamud’s associates, it would be hard to paint this as the Bureau’s finest hour. As I noted here at PJ Media last week, the FBI has been less than forthcoming to the public about the scope of the threat of U.S. persons who have traveled to fight in Syria and the number of those who have returned.

As additional details become available, it may become even more clear how the FBI botched the handling of this potential threat.

***

Terrorism expert Patrick Poole discusses the latest on threats from ISIS and other extremist groups operating in the American heartland.

 

Minnesota Martyrs

 

Also see:

How DHS Ineptitude Facilitates Terrorist Operations

Image: Abdirahman Sheik MohamudFrontpage, April 20, 2015 by Michael Cutler:

On April 16, 2015 Fox News posted an Associated Press report, “Ohio man accused of traveling to Syria, plotting terror act.” [1]

My focus today will be on the way that the alleged terrorist was provided with United States citizenship and consequently, a United States passport. The adjudications process failed to uncover material facts that would have barred the individual, Abdirahman Sheik Mohamud, from becoming a naturalized citizen and hence receive that highly valuable United States passport.

The immigration component of this story and similar stories, has been largely ignored by the media, although the issue about his having immigrated to the United States from Somalia and then becoming a naturalized U.S. citizen was raised in some news reports.

The complete immigration component of this case is extremely important, as you will see — indeed, this element, had it worked as it should have, could have thwarted the ability of this alleged terrorist to have traveled to Syria to join his brother who was killed in combat while fighting on the side of terrorists. This is why I frequently make the point that our borders and our immigration laws are our first and last line of defense against international terrorists and transnational criminals.

While the Fox News headline simply identified Mohamud as being an “Ohio man” the body of the article did provide solid information about his country of birth and his having become a naturalized citizen, unlike many other news reports that were content to simply describe the alleged terrorist as simply being “An Ohio Man.”

Here is how the Fox News news report began:

COLUMBUS, Ohio – An Ohio man traveled to Syria and trained alongside terrorists, then returned to the U.S. with plans to attack a military base or a prison, according to a federal indictment announced Thursday.

Abdirahman Sheik Mohamud, a U.S. citizen originally from Somalia, wanted to “kill three or four American soldiers execution style,” according to the indictment. Attacking the prison was part of a backup plan if that didn’t work, the charges said.

The indictment also says Mohamud’s brother, Abdifatah Aden, fought with Jabhat al-Nusrah, a State Department-designated terrorist group, until he was killed in battle in Syria in June 2014.

Mohamud, 23, of Columbus was charged with supporting terrorism, supporting the same terrorist group and making a false statement involving international terrorism when he allegedly lied to an Ohio FBI agent by saying he was in Istanbul when authorities say he was in Syria.

Here is critical bit information contained in the report:

Mohamud became a U.S. citizen in February 2014, according to the government.

The government didn’t say how it learned of the plot, but the indictment mentions two “unnamed” associates of Mohamud in the U.S. to whom he gave information about his activities, including a video of Mohamud carrying an AK-47.

One of them said he believed Mohamud was trying to recruit him to participate in the plot, according to the indictment. The government also said Mohamud made terrorism-related Facebook posts in 2013.

An April 16, 2015 New York Post article. “ISIS-trained Ohio man was ordered to attack US: feds [2]” pinned down the nexus between Mohamud becoming a United States citizen and his departure for the Middle East in these paragraphs:

An Ohio man who left the US a year ago to train with Islamic State jihadists was nabbed by the feds Thursday for allegedly plotting to unleash terror in the country, authorities said.

Abdirahman Sheik Mohamud, 23, of Columbus, left in April 2014 — two months after becoming a naturalized citizen —to train and fight with the extremists in Syria, the Justice Department said, ABC News reported.

Islamic State wannabe Mohamud — who has posted the group’s propaganda online — was charged with providing material support to al Nusrah, an al Qaeda affiliate in Syria, according to the feds.

The jihadists trained him in shooting, home break-ins, explosives and hand-to-hand combat, authorities said. He was then ordered to return to the US and commit a terror act, an indictment said.

He returned in June 2014.

A review of his indictment [3] will dispel any doubts (should any exist) as to whether or not Mohamud made acquiring United States citizenship and a U.S. passport an integral part of his plans, you need to review in which it is alleged that he had communicated with his brother Aden who asked him how his “papers” were coming along. He responded by saying that, having obtained his U.S. citizenship, he was waiting to receive his U.S. passport before traveling to meet Aden. The indictment states that Aden was killed in combat in Syria in June 2014.

When disclosures were made about the NSA spying on Americans the argument was made that this was done to protect our citizens and our nation. I am cautiously supportive of appropriate measures, within reason, being taken to protect us, however, for the NSA to scrutinize U.S. citizens, yet apparently failing to uncover the postings of the alleged terrorist in this case, raises many serious questions.

If the NSA did have this information, was it shared with the DHS?

The indictment states that Mohamud was posting material online about his desire to carry out terror attacks in 2013. How did USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services), an agency that is under the aegis of the DHS, conduct its investigation into his application to become a naturalized American citizen at least six months later and then approve that application?

Back when I was an INS Special Agent, applications for naturalization required that a GMC (Good Moral Conduct) investigation was conducted to determine that the alien not only had no criminal convictions but also met other, more stringent standards. Today our government makes a big deal about running fingerprints to verify criminal histories.

A critical question is whether or not any GMC field investigations are still being conducted by USCIS. Indeed, how are applications for citizenship vetted? The likelihood is that there are no such field investigations being conducted. Even without knowing about the FaceBook postings noted in the indictment, it would not be a stretch of the imagination to say that individuals who know Mohamud would have potentially raised some questions about his hostility to the United States.

Let’s in fact consider the obvious in this specific case: Abdirahman Sheik Mohamud immigrated to the United States from Somalia, a country that has a strong association with terrorist organizations. In point of fact, there have been a succession of reports of young members of the Somali community, from Minnesota and elsewhere, abruptly leaving the United States to join terror groups in the Middle East. At the time he applied for naturalization Mohamud was in his early twenties, an age often shared by terrorists. USCIS adjudicates hundreds of thousands of applications for naturalization each and every year and consequently there is an abject lack of resources available to thoroughly screen each application.

However given the ongoing concerns about terrorism, it would certainly seem that applications filed by those who may be prone to involvement with terrorism should come under extra scrutiny including an actual field investigation.

There is ample justification for such investigation. The USCIS Policy Manual, contains specific guidelines about how the naturalization process is to be conducted. The obvious question hopefully that will be asked at a hearing that should be conducted by Congress is whether or not USCIS is meeting these standards. The consequences can, as we have seen, be of grave significance.

***

Recommendation: Targeting travel is at least as powerful a weapon against terrorists as targeting their money. The United States should combine terrorist travel intelligence, operations, and law enforcement in a strategy to intercept terrorists, find terrorist travel facilitators, and constrain terrorist mobility.

Read more

6 ISIS-Related Arrests in San Diego, Minneapolis Over Alleged Terror Plot

AP

AP

Washington Free Beacon, By David Bailey, April 20, 2015:

MINNEAPOLIS (Reuters) – U.S. authorities have charged six men from Minnesota with planning to join Islamic State and fight for the militant group in Syria, the U.S. attorney for Minnesota said on Monday.

All six Somali Minnesotans are friends and had been conspiring for the past 10 months, many trying multiple times to leave the country, U.S. prosecutors alleged.

They were arrested as part of a yearlong FBI investigation into mainly young men from the area trying to travel to Syria to join Islamic State, according to prosecutors. There is no evidence they had plans to conduct an attack inside the United States, prosecutors said.

Zacharia Yusuf Abdurahman, 19, Adnan Farah, 19, Hanad Mustafe Musse, 19, and Guled Ali Omar, 20, were arrested in Minneapolis on Sunday. Abdirahman Yasin Daud, 21, and Mohamed Abdihamid Farah, 21, were arrested on Sunday in California after driving from Minneapolis to San Diego.

“We have a terror recruiting problem in Minnesota,” U.S. Attorney for Minnesota Andrew Luger told a news conference.

Dozens of people from the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, many of them young Somali-American men, have traveled or attempted to travel overseas to support Islamic State or al Shabaab, a militant group based in Somalia, since 2007, according to U.S. prosecutors.

They have said the Islamic State began recruiting in the Somali community in Minnesota in 2013.

Another Minnesota man, Hamza Ahmed, was stopped in New York last November en route to Syria and indicted in February on charges of conspiring to support Islamic State and lying to federal agents investigating recruitment by militant groups.

Three of the men arrested on Sunday had traveled to New York with Ahmed, prosecutors said.

One member of the group, which met regularly to plan the trips, had doubts, changed his mind and recorded their meetings, Luger said.

“They are not confused young men, they were not easily influenced,” Luger said. “These were focused men who were intent on joining a terrorist organization by any means possible.”

They received advice and encouragement from another group member, Abdi Nur, who joined the Islamic State and remained in contact with them, prosecutors said. Nur was charged in November.

The six men arrested in Minnesota are due to appear in U.S. District Court in St. Paul on Monday afternoon. The men arrested in San Diego are expected to appear in court on Monday and be returned to Minnesota.

(Additional reporting by Lindsay Dunsmuir; Editing by Susan Heavey, Bill Trott and Ted Botha)

Minneapolis men allegedly trying to join ISIS highlight role of American recruiter

On Anniversary of Boko Haram Kidnapping, 85% of Chibok Girls Still Missing

Bring-Back-Our-Girls-March-1-Year-Later-ap-640x480Breitbart, by Frances Martel, April 14, 2015:

On April 14, 2014, the Nigerian terrorist group Boko Haram abducted more than 300 schoolgirls from the village of Chibok, cementing their international reputation as one of the most ruthless and dangerous terror groups in the world. One year later, more than 200 of those girls remain missing, and Nigeria’s president-elect is making no promises to find them.

The exact number of girls abducted out of Chibok’s secondary school during their physics examination that day remains unconfirmed. Africa Check, a project by the Agence-France Presse, notes that estimates range from 200-500 girls and estimates the exact number to be at 360 girls. According to the Nigerian police commissioner in charge of the investigation, 53 of those abducted escaped. Still missing are 219 girls, or 85%, not seen since Boko Haram released a horrifying video of more than 100 of the girls wearing black Islamic garb and reciting Koranic verses.

Nigeria is commemorating their loss today with a large march in its capital, Abuja, demanding the girls be returned home safely. Two hundred nineteen girls marched today, one representing each of the victims still missing. Every day that passes makes the possibility of their safe return less likely.

The international community’s immediate reaction to the Chibok kidnapping was lackluster enough to embolden Boko Haram to embark on at least 38 other abduction sprees in the past year, according to Amnesty International. At least 2,000 women are estimated to be in their custody, though Amnesty notes that number may be much higher.

Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau said in a video released shortly after the Chibok kidnapping that the girls would be sold into slavery or married off. While this is true for many of Boko Haram’s victims, a number of others have been used as suicide bombers to attack public squares in northern Nigeria.

The United States responded to the alarm following the Chibok kidnapping with the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls, with which First Lady Michelle Obama posed for a photo. Even before the Chibok kidnappings, the Obama State Department was reticent to acknowledge the Boko Haram threat, with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton actively objecting to placing the jihadist group on terror lists.

President Obama also sent a team of American military personnel to help Nigeria find the girls, though this was widely criticized as insufficient support, and detractors have been proven correct by the continued absence of the Chibok girls in their families’ lives–that is, those family members who themselves have not fallen victim to Boko Haram. Eleven parents of Chibok girls died in a Boko Haram attack in July 2014, long before the jihadist group took temporary control of Chibok in November, slaughtering more residents who attempted to defend themselves. The Nigerian military eventually liberated the town of the Boko Haram threat–an attempt to thwart the final humiliation of losing the town that has become emblematic of Nigeria’s inability to defeat the group.

Nigeria’s failure to eradicate the group is believed to have been a deciding factor in incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan’s loss to Muhammadu Buhari, who served as the nation’s military dictator in 1983 before becoming a serial presidential candidate. In an election postponed but otherwise unmarred by Boko Haram, Buhari–who himself survived a Boko Haram car bomb–vowed to eradicate the group.

And yet even Buhari, who played a pivotal role in the destruction of the violent Maitatsine sect, is making no promises about the Chibok girls. “We do not know if the Chibok girls can be rescued. Their whereabouts remain unknown. As much as I wish to, I cannot promise that we can find them,” Buhari said in remarks on Tuesday, nonetheless promising to place all efforts towards finding them.

In the past two months, escaped Boko Haram captives have claimed to have either spotted personally or heard rumors from other captives of where the Chibok girls are being held. Nigerian military sources have said in the past that the group has likely been split into smaller groups and hidden in the woodlands of the north.

Also see: