WATCH: Anti-Semitic Hate Crimes in UK Soar to Record Levels, Police Accused of ‘Betrayal’

Breitbart, by Simon Kent, July 17, 2017:

Hate crime targeting Jews in the UK has escalated for the third year running, reaching the worst level on record according to a new report. The shock result has prompted a warning from Jewish people that they are enduring “intolerable” levels of hate crime.

At the same time the number of charges for those perpetrating hate crimes against Jews fell “drastically”, with alleged perpetrators charged in fewer than a tenth of cases, campaigners say. They also claim a “paltry” 15 cases were prosecuted last year.

The new figures were obtained from all UK police forces by the Campaign Against Antisemitism for its National Antisemitic Crime Audit. In summary it highlights:

  • Antisemitic hate crime has surged 44 per cent since 2014, making 2016 the worst year on record
  • 1 in 10 antisemitic crimes were violent but only one violent antisemitic crime was prosecuted in 2016
  • Almost half of police forces did not charge a single one of the antisemitic crimes reported to them
  • Only 1.4 per cent of antisemitic crime was prosecuted — just 15 cases last year
  • The Home Secretary has issued a statement promising to “consider the report’s recommendations carefully”

In 2016, anti-Semitic crime rose by 14.9 per cent against 2015, or 44.5 per cent against 2014. There were 1,078 anti-Semitic crimes in 2016 and a consistently elevated level of anti-Semitic crime has become the new normality for British Jews.

Gideon Falter, chairman of the Campaign Against Antisemitism, which compiled the analysis, said:

“The failure of police forces and the Crown Prosecution Service to protect British Jews is a betrayal. The solutions are simple, but whilst the right promises are being made, little has been implemented. The result is that British Jews continue to endure intolerable levels of hate crime.”

The campaign’s report warned that a consistently elevated level of anti-Semitic crime has become the “new normality” for British Jews since the middle of 2014.

Forces recorded 105 violent offences against Jews in 2016 – which was down by 44 per cent on the previous year, the assessment found.

In a statement, the Rt Hon. Amber Rudd MP, Home Secretary, responded to the new report, saying hate crime of any type is not acceptable. She continued:

“Everyone in this country has the right to be safe from violence and persecution. We are working together to tackle antisemitic hate crime in all its forms and using the full force of the law to protect every person in the UK. Our Hate Crime Action Plan has encouraged further action against hate crime across the police and criminal justice system.

“This includes encouraging more victims to report incidents to the police. We will consider the report’s recommendations carefully as we develop new ways to rid the country of this sickening crime.”

This is not the first time a study has revealed the level of anti-Semitic hate crime in the UK. As Breitbart Jerusalem reported, in February a different study revealed anti-Semitic hate incidents are surging to record highs in Britain.

The Community Security Trust charity said there were on average more than three anti-Semitic incidents per day in 2016.

It said there were 1,309 incidents last year, a 36 percent increase over the year before. It is the highest total since the group started keeping records in 1984.

Most of the incidents involved verbal abuse, hate mail and graffiti. There were also 81 cases of vandalism and damage to Jewish property.

Report: Saudi Arabia Funding Extremism, PM May Accused of ‘Kowtowing’

Getty Images

Breitbart, by Liam Deacon, July 5, 2017:

An extensive new report has drawn a link between recent terror attacks and the foreign funding of UK mosques, mainly coming from Saudi Arabia, which “is heavily involved in exporting an illiberal, bigoted Wahhabi ideology.”

The document also slams the Prime Minister Theresa May, who visited Saudi Arabia earlier this year, for “kowtowing” to Saudi Arabia by “suppressing” a government report into the funding of extremism in the UK. Last month she was accused of a “cover-up”

The inquiry was authorised by former Prime Minster David Cameron in 2015 in exchange for Liberal Democrat support for bombing Islamic State in Syria. It was initially due to be shown to then-Home Secretary Mrs. May and Mr. Cameron.

The Henry Jackson Society, who produced the recent report, is now calling for a public inquiry into the Gulf States allegedly fuelling Islamist extremism and even terrorism in British mosques.

The think tank list “numerous” example of violent jihadists who have been linked to foreign-funded mosques and preachers, some of whom have travelled to fight with Islamic State in Syria and Iraq.

Labour MP Dan Jarvis, a former soldier, said in a statement: “This report from the Henry Jackson Society sheds light on what are extremely worrying links between Saudi Arabia and the funding of extremism here in the UK.

“In the wake of the terrible and tragic terrorist attacks we’ve seen this year, it is vital that we use every tool at our disposal to protect our communities.

“This includes identifying the networks that promote and support extremism and shutting down the financial networks that fund it.

“I’m calling on the Government to release its foreign funding report, and guarantee that the new counter-extremism commission will make tackling the funding of extremism a priority.”

The report explains that Saudi Arabia has been using its wealth to export its ideology since the 1960s, and “this funding has primarily taken the form of endowments to mosques and Islamic educational institutions…”

Adding: “A number of Britain’s most serious Islamist hate preachers sit within the Salafi-Wahhabi ideology and are apparently linked to Islamist extremism sponsored from overseas, either by having studied in Saudi Arabia as part of scholarship programmes, or by having been provided with extreme literature and material within the UK itself.”

Former UK Intel Official Says 23,000 Jihadists Living in Britain Is Probably ‘the Tip of the Iceberg’

PJ MEDIA, BY PATRICK POOLE, JUNE 28, 2017:

Colonel Richard Kemp is a former senior UK intelligence official and former chairman of the Cobra Intelligence Group who briefed the British government on secret intelligence.

Speaking with BBC Newsnight this week, Kemp said that the 23,000 jihadists MI5 officials have publicly admitted are living in the UK “may be the tip of the iceberg”:

The 23,000 number was reported in the days following the Manchester arena attack last month that left 22 victims dead and 250 injured.

The Times reported:

Intelligence officers have identified 23,000 jihadist extremists living in Britain as potential terrorist attackers, it emerged yesterday.

The scale of the challenge facing the police and security services was disclosed by Whitehall sources after criticism that multiple opportunities to stop the Manchester bomber had been missed.

About 3,000 people from the total group are judged to pose a threat and are under investigation or active monitoring in 500 operationsbeing run by police and intelligence services. The 20,000 others have featured in previous inquiries and are categorised as posing a “residual risk”.

Those MI5 figures were confirmed by UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd the following day on Andrew Marr’s BBC show.

But Kemp’s stunning admission that these figures on the number of jihadists may be vastly understated lends evidence to the claim that the extent of the threat in the UK may exceed authorities’ ability to deal with it.

The pace of terror attacks in the UK this year has been staggering.

Notwithstanding that arrests have been taking place at a blistering speed:

Top among the terror concerns are those returning foreign fighters who have traveled to terror zones, most recently Syria and Iraq, to fight with terror organizations:

Read more

Why the Odds Favor Islam

(Photo credit: Associated Press)

Crisis Magazine, by William Kirkpatrick, June 12, 2017:

On May 22, an Islamic suicide bomber detonated himself outside a pop concert in Manchester, England, killing and wounding dozens, many of them young children.

The terrorist was a 22-year-old named Salman Abedi. A few days after the attack, I was reading an article about the mosque he attended—the Didsbury Mosque. “That’s funny,” I thought looking at the accompanying photo, “that doesn’t look like a mosque, it looks like a church.”

Sure enough, as I discovered, the Didsbury Mosque was once the Albert Park Methodist Chapel. It had been bought by the local Syrian Muslim community and transformed into a Muslim place of worship.

Similar transformations have been taking place in other parts of the UK. St. Mark’s Church in London is now the New Peckham Mosque, St. Peter’s Church in Cobridge was sold to the Madina Mosque. The Brick Lane Mosque in London was originally a Methodist church. But church-to-mosque conversions are only part of a larger story. There are now 423 mosques in London, and the number is expected to grow. Meanwhile, 500 London churches have closed since 2001, and in all of England 10,000 churches have closed since 1960.

The transformation of the Albert Park Methodist Church to the Didsbury Mosque is emblematic of one of the most significant shifts in history: the transformation of Europe from a largely Christian continent to a largely Islamic one. The transformation is far from complete, and there’s an outside chance the process can be reversed, but time and demographics favor Islam.

In several of Europe’s cities, the Muslim population now hovers around the thirty percent mark. In ten years’ time, that will be forty percent. Of course that doesn’t mean 40 percent of highly committed Muslims facing 60 percent of deeply devout Christians. Both faiths have their share of half-hearted “nominals” for whom religion is more a cultural inheritance than a deeply held conviction. Still, the “nominal” problem is a much greater problem for European Christians than for European Muslims. In many European countries, Sunday church attendance is the 5-10 percent range whereas mosque attendance is very high in relation to the size of the Muslim population. In England, there are already more Muslims attending Friday prayers than there are Christians attending Anglican services on Sundays. A study by Christian Research predicts that by 2020 the number of Muslims attending prayer service in England and Wales will exceed the number of Catholics attending weekly Mass.

It’s also noteworthy that the expanding Muslim population in Europe is relatively young, whereas the declining “Christian” population is an aging one. Sixty-forty seems like good odds until you realize that the average age of the 60 percenters will be around 55 while the average age of the 40 percenters will be around 25.

You may object that if there is any fighting to be done, most of the fighting on the “Christian” side will be done by the army, not by citizens in walkers and wheelchairs. But keep in mind that the military draws its recruits from the ranks of the young. As the population of the people that Islamists refer to as “crusaders” ages, European governments will be forced to draw more of their new recruits from the Muslim population. The same goes for the police forces. Many Muslims will serve their country or their city faithfully, but many will have divided loyalties, and some will have signed up in the first place with mutiny in mind.

Most likely, however, the transformation will be effected without major battles. It won’t be a matter of numbers or of military strength, but of strength of belief. Those with the strongest beliefs will prevail. Those who are not sure what to believe will submit without a fight.

Will Europe Defend its “Values”?
That’s the theme of Michel Houellebecq’s Submission, a novel about the gradual Islamization of France. The protagonist, a middle-aged professor, has a number of qualms about the Islamic takeover of the university system, but nothing sufficient to resist it. The things he values most—literature, good food, and sex—are, in the end, no impediment to accepting Islam. True, he is offered several inducements to convert—career advancement, plenty of money, and several “wives”—but one gets the impression that, even without these incentives, he would still eventually convert. At one point prior to his submission, he thinks about joining a monastic order as his literary hero, J.K. Huysmans, had done, but he soon realizes that he lacks the necessary Christian conviction. Indeed, he has no strong convictions.

His plight is the plight of contemporary Europe in a nutshell. Many Europeans see no sense in resisting Islamization because they have nothing worth defending. To be sure, European leaders still talk about “our values,” but they can’t seem to specify what those values are, beyond appeals to “diversity” and “pluralism.” For example, after the Manchester massacre, British Prime Minister Theresa May stated that “our values—the liberal, pluralistic values of Britain—will always prevail over the hateful ideology of the terrorists.”

I’m not so sure of that. In an earlier era, Brits would have connected their values to God, country, family, and honor. In other words, things worth fighting for. But “liberal, pluralistic values”? That’s not very solid ground on which to take your stand. Who wants to die for diversity? Indeed, it can be argued that the worship of diversity for its own sake is what allowed terrorists to get a foothold in England in the first place. No one wanted to question all those diverse preachers spreading their diverse message about Jews, infidels, and homosexuals. The trouble is, unless there are higher values than diversity, there’s no way of judging between good diversities and bad diversities—between, say, honoring your wife and honor-killing her if she displeases you.

The same is true of freedom. Freedom is a fundamental right, but what you do with your freedom is also important. There has to be some higher objective value that directs our choices to good ends rather than bad ones. Otherwise, freedom becomes a license to do anything one pleases.

An Attack on Childhood
Here we touch on a very touchy subject. I would not like to be in Theresa May’s shoes when, after a horrifying attack, she has to come up with just the right words. But one thing she said struck me as not quite right. She said: “We struggle to comprehend the warped and twisted mind that sees a room packed with young children not as a scene to cherish, but as an opportunity for carnage.”

It’s possible to fully agree with May’s sentiments while, at the same time, noting that there once was a time when a room full of children watching an Ariana Grande concert would not be considered “a scene to cherish.” “Her dress, dancing, and song lyrics,” wrote one columnist, “are deliberately decadent and immodest.” And, after watching some YouTube clips of her performances, I would have to agree. I’m pretty sure that most of the parents I know would not want their children to attend one of her concerts.

While the world was justly outraged at Salman Abedi’s attack on innocent children, no one seems to notice the attack on childhood innocence that the typical pop concert represents. The two “attacks” should not be equated, of course. The producers of pop concerts are not the moral equivalents of a suicide bomber. Still, the fact that so many parents saw nothing wrong with dropping their children off at the Manchester concert suggests a great deal of moral confusion in the West.

Unfortunately, such moral confusion leaves people vulnerable to those who are absolutely certain about their beliefs. The moral relativism of the West is one of the chief reasons why the Islamic cultural jihad has been so successful. People who can’t see that the soft-porn style of Lady Gaga, Miley Cyrus, and Ariana Grande is not good for children will have difficulty seeing the problem with polygamy, child marriage, and other aspects of sharia law. In a relativistic society, the safest default position is “who’s to judge?”

Relativism Leads to Islamic Dominance
Earlier I said that Europe is being transformed from a Christian culture to an Islamic culture, but that’s not quite accurate because it’s actually a three-stage transformation. Much of Europe has already transitioned out of its Christian stage and into a post-Christian or secular stage. There are still many Christians in Europe, but Europe’s Christian consciousness has been largely lost. The next stage is the transition from secularism to Islam. That’s not inevitable, but it’s likely because without a framework of Judeo-Christian beliefs, secularism becomes relativism and relativism can’t offer much resistance to determined true believers.

Back in 2014, Theresa May said “we celebrate different ways of life, we value diversity, and we cherish our freedom to lead our lives as we choose.” But if your culture stands for nothing more than the freedom to shop for different lifestyles, it won’t last long. The contemporary Western fascination with pop culture highlights the problem. Pop culture is by its very nature a transient phenomenon. What is pop today won’t be pop tomorrow. Indeed, the popular culture of tomorrow may very well favor burqas, multiple wives, and male supremacy. There may still be a place for singer-dancers like Ariana Grande and Miley Cyrus, but that place would most likely be as a harem dancer in a Sultan’s palace or as entertainment for a Saudi prince who has bought up a country estate in Oxfordshire.

It’s hard to beat transcendent values with transient values. That’s especially the case when the transcendent crowd are willing to die (and kill you in the process) for their values. Most Brits, on the other hand, are not willing to lay down their lives for the sake of keeping bacon on the menu or porn on the telly.

Christianity vs. Two Forms of Totalitarianism
When I use the word “transcendent,” I refer only to a belief in an eternal life beyond this worldly existence. Quite obviously, as in the case of Salman Abedi, transcendent values can be twisted. The idea that God will reward you for murdering innocent young women in Manchester by furnishing you with virginal young women in paradise is a truly twisted concept. But apparently it is widely shared in the Muslim world. When, during a World Cup qualifier in Australia, a minute of silence was called to commemorate the London terror victims, the whole Saudi soccer team refused to observe it. As Sheik Mohammad Tawhidi later explained:

In their eyes the attackers are martyrs who are going to paradise. And if they stand for a minute of silence they are against their Muslim brothers who fought for jihad and fought the infidels.

As twisted as these values may be, it’s beginning to look as though secular values aren’t up to the job of opposing them. The trouble with secular values when they are cut off from their Judeo-Christian roots is that they are arbitrary. Autonomy? Dignity? Equality? Says who?

“If there is no God,” wrote Dostoevsky, “everything is permitted.” Secularism has no God and, therefore, no ultimate standard of judgment. The end result is that each man becomes his own god and does his own thing—even if that “thing” involves the exploitation of childhood innocence. Islam, on the other hand, does believe in God, but not the God Dostoevsky had in mind. The God of Islam is an arbitrary despot whose commands are not rooted in reason, love, or justice.

So we have two arbitrary systems vying for control of the West—the soft totalitarianism of secularism and the hard totalitarianism of Islam. Both are really forms of slavery. Muslims are slaves of a tyrannical God, and secular man becomes the slave of his own desires and addictions. It may seem unthinkable that the West will ever submit to Islam, but many Western citizens are already in submission mode. Submission to their desires has put them in a bad spot. As a result, they are looking for something bigger to submit to—something outside and above their own fragile selves. Some have already turned to Islam. Many more will unless…

Unless, that is, there is a recovery of the Judeo-Christian belief that God is a God of love, justice, reason, and goodness—and that we are made in his image (a concept which does not exist in Islam). In the context of that vision, belief in human dignity and the rights of man is thoroughly justified.

People who believe that they and their neighbor are made in the image of God will generally have a strong sense of their responsibility to act accordingly. Such people will be far from perfect, but they will at least realize that it is wrong to submit both to Islam’s warped image of God and to secularism’s degraded image of man.

In the end, the choice for the West is not between Islam and pluralistic secularism. A rootless secularism will almost certainly submit to Islam. The only real hope for the West is the recovery of the faith that once inspired Christians to build a beautiful church near Albert Park in West Didsbury, England.

William Kilpatrick taught for many years at Boston College. He is the author of several books about cultural and religious issues, including Why Johnny Can’t Tell Right From Wrong; and Christianity, Islam and Atheism: The Struggle for the Soul of the West and The Politically Incorrect Guide to Jihad. His articles have appeared in numerous publications, including Catholic World Report, National Catholic Register, Aleteia, Saint Austin Review, Investor’s Business Daily, and First Things. His work is supported in part by the Shillman Foundation. For more on his work and writings, visit his website, turningpointproject.com

5 Lessons for Us From the Manchester Bombing

Clarion Project, by Ryan Mauro, May 30, 2017:

Suspects continue to be arrested following the suicide bombing at the Manchester Arena, with 13 people arrested in the U.K. and Libya at the time of this writing. One person detonated the explosive but the attack was the product of a global Islamist insurgency—and insurgencies can be defeated if we learn from their operations.

Here are 5 lessons from the bombing and follow-up investigation, in no particular order:

  1. Manchester is a hub in the Islamist insurgency network.
    Items left in memorial for the victims of the Manchester attack.
    Items left in memorial for the victims of the Manchester attack. (Photo: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

    It was a single bomb set off by a single jihadist, but he belonged to a hub in the Islamist insurgency. Apparently, independent Islamists often exist in geographic clusters that are linked together through a multilayered infrastructure. South Manchester is one such cluster.

    Earlier this year, The Guardian found that 16 convicted or killed terrorists lived within a 2.5-mile space in southern Manchester. That was before the bombing and the subsequent arrests in the area.

    Salman Abedi is believed to have links to ISIS recruiter Raphael Hostey, who was killed in Syria. Hostey acted as a “central node” in the Manchester jihadist network; a person whom others gravitate to and are somewhat directed by.

    In 2000, Abedi also lived on the same street as Abd al-Basset Azzouz, a member of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG), explosives expert for al-Qaeda, and al-Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri’s leader of Libyan operations. After they separated from the same street in 2000, the two were never more than a mile apart in Manchester.

    Azzouz traveled to Afghanistan and Pakistan in 2009. Zawahiri then dispatched him to Libya. He is suspected of involvement in the 2012 Benghazi attacks. He was reportedly captured in Turkey in 2014 and then transferred to Jordan.

    The United Nations sanctioned him as a “key al-Qaeda operative” in February 2016. The U.N. says he recruited 200 terrorists in eastern Libya. Some U.S. officials put the number higher, estimating his Libyan network’s strength to be 200-300 as of 2014. It is very possible that Abedi learned how to make the bomb used at the Manchester Arena from this al-Qaeda affiliate in Libya.

    Manchester became a hub for the global Islamist insurgency because Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) members fled there to escape the wrath of then Libyan dictator Qaddafi. The LIFG developed an infrastructure in Manchester and other parts of the UK to continue the jihad away from Qaddafi’s grip.

    One such member was Ramadan Abedi, the father of the Manchester bomber, Salman. Ramadan fled Libya in 1993 to Saudi Arabia and, from there, was granted asylum by the United Kingdom. He moved to London and then southern Manchester.

    In 2011, when Salman Abedi was only 16 years old, he reportedly moved to Libya to fight against Qaddafi’s forces alongside his father. A member of the Didsbury Mosque claims he personally saw Ramadan Abedi fighting as a member of the LIFG. The associate did not say that he saw Salman.

    The mosque attendee, who claims to have known Ramadan since the early 1990s, said the LIFG had so many recruits from Manchester that their unit was known as the “Manchester fighters—we even had our own logo. Three-quarters of the fighters at the beginning of the revolution were from Manchester.”

  2. Islamists who condemn ISIS are still part of the problem—and that includes the Didsbury Mosque in Manchester.
    Didsbury Mosque, Manchester.
    Didsbury Mosque, Manchester. (Photo: OLI SCARFF / AFP / Getty Images)

    Yes, the imam of the Didsbury Mosque, also known as the Manchester Islamic Center, is said to have condemned ISIS and Ansar al-Sharia (the al-Qaeda affiliate linked to the Benghazi attacks), which enraged Salman Abedi. The mosque banned Abedi after he confronted the imam, accusing him of talking “bullocks” [sic] and says it reported him to the proper authorities.

    It’s still not good enough.

    Salman Abedi got his Islamist foundations from some place and there is nowhere more influential in his life than the mosque he and his family attended. The family is “very religious” and a member of the Libyan community in Manchester said the boys “learned the Quran by heart.”

    Salman Abedi’s father, a known member of the al-Qaeda-linked LIFG, was a long-time mosque official who led the call to prayer. Salman’s brother, who has since been arrested, is a teaching assistant for Arabic classes at the mosque’s school.

    The Islamism of the LIFG and the mosque is only a hair’s breadth away from that of the more aggressive Islamism of al-Qaeda and ISIS. They are all acting upon the same fundamental principles, albeit in different ways.

    The Quilliam Foundation, a moderate Muslim organization, says those who originally formed the Libyan community in Manchester attended the Didsbury Mosque because it was Arab and run by the Muslim Brotherhood.

    The top leadership is part of the Muslim Brotherhood/Hamas apparatus. Its imam and its supervisor of its Sharia Department are also officials in international Brotherhood/Hamas groups led by Sheikh Yousef al-Qaradawi, one of the most influential extremists in the world. His support for suicide bombing, violent jihad, theocracy, anti-Semitism and other ISIS-like beliefs are well-known.

    According to the Global Muslim Brotherhood Watch, a former trustee is a “known Hamas activist.” He was present during a pivotal secret Brotherhood/Hamas meeting in Philadelphia in 1993 to set up the U.S. branch of the Brotherhood.

    Anti-Semitic tweets from another trustee, Fawzi Haffar, have been discovered. The content is so ferocious that it would lead any Muslim who trusts his word to believe they are obligated to engage in violent jihad.

    The mosque’s imam personally engaged in violent jihad in Libya against Qaddafi’s forces in 2011. There is a video that purportedly shows him in military attire discussing plans for attack, with militants loading bombs and discussing upcoming operations. He previously claimed he was only helping his family members to escape the violence.

    In 2005, a member of the al-Qaeda-linked LIFG was arrested in Libya. He said he was granted asylum by the U.K. and moved to Manchester. He said he then began fundraising for LIFG through the Didsbury Mosque. When asked about it, a mosque spokesperson blatantly lied by saying they hadn’t even heard of the LIFG, much less the arrested individual.

    The mosque also has a history of choosing guest lecturers who spout radicalism of the vilest nature.

    One Muslim says he began attending the mosque in 1994 but left in 1999 after it repeatedly invited Abu Qatada to teach its congregants. Qatada’s extremism was well-known and present in a lecture to an audience of 300 that this Muslim says he attended. The individual confronted Qatada and had repeated arguments with other mosque members which escalated into assaults. The former attendee says his nose was broken in one fight.

    One blogger noticed at least three other extremist speakers who were brought into the Didsbury Mosque as authorities the audience should hear. Their preaching includes ferocious anti-Semitism; advocacy for Sharia-based theocracies; condemnations of secular-democracy; wild conspiracy theories; glorifying of violent jihad and executing adulterers, homosexuals, those who leave Islam and those who commit blasphemy against Islam.

    Other teachings that the preachers are known for include condemning Jewish and Christian influence on Muslims and that Muslims cannot be close friends with non-Muslims. Non-Muslims are not deserving of true respect. Jews are orchestrating the spread of homosexuality, engineering a conspiracy through the media and will be part of the Antichrist’s army.

    One speaker preached that women do not belong in the workplace and should only leave the home when it is unavoidable. Other quotes from the selected speakers include statements that Muslims cannot help those who converted to Christianity to escape from countries like Iran where apostasy is punished with death. One condemned secular and liberal Muslims as the “biggest danger” to the community.

    With this type of preaching, it isn’t hard to see how Abedi could be motivated to take that extra step to join ISIS or al-Qaeda or why at least two other ISIS recruits worshipped at the mosque.

  3. We must dismantle the Islamist ideological infrastructure that produces violent jihad and its prerequisite radicalism.
    British soldiers outside the House of Parliament in London in the wake of the May 2017 Manchester terror attack.
    British soldiers outside the House of Parliament in London in the wake of the May 2017 Manchester terror attack. (Photo: DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS / AFP / Getty Images)

    Notice the overlaps in membership and brands of Islamism in the above lesson. Because jihadist groups are just a manifestation of the Islamist ideology, group membership is fluid. A recent study found that half of the most prominent violent jihadists came from tamer Islamist movements not directly engaged in violence.

    A mosque operated by the Muslim Brotherhood/Hamas was a centerpiece in setting up the LIFG’s network in Manchester, even though LIFG was aligned with al-Qaeda, supposedly a rival of the Brotherhood and Hamas. This same network produces ISIS recruits, even though the mosque imam condemns ISIS, as does the Brotherhood and other parts of the LIFG network.

    One possible associate of Abedi from the Manchester hub joined a Libyan Islamist group called the 17 February Martyrs’ Brigade, which was disastrously chosen to protect Americans in Benghazi. This individual later became an advocate for ISIS after returning to the UK.

    Ramadan Abedi may also have fought for an Islamist group in Libya and been injured in 2014.

    That is why the common thread—the Islamist ideology and the factories producing it—must be the focus of our efforts. As Elliot Friedland wrote about, a Muslim woman called into BBC’s Question Time program and warned that Saudi-trained clerics were coming into her community and promoting Wahhabism to children as young as seven.

  4. The anti-Islamists are your allies, not the “moderate” Islamists.
    Police cordon off an area in Moss Side Manchester to carry out investigations.
    Police cordon off an area in Moss Side Manchester to carry out investigations. (Photo: JOHN SUPER/AFP/Getty Images)

     The investigation into the Manchester bombing is resulting in scrutiny of the LIFG network in the U.K. that spawned so many al-Qaeda and ISIS recruits. It’s worth pointing out that our Egyptian and Libyan allies are fighting that same network and have been asking for U.S. help in defeating them since the civil war began in 2011.

     After Libyan dictator Qaddafi fell, a very predictable civil war between “moderate” Islamist militias and secular-democratic forces began. ISIS gained a foothold and fought both. The civil war became a proxy war between the anti-Islamist secularists backed by Egypt and the United Arab Emirates and a coalition of Islamists backed by Qatar, Turkey and Sudan that includes al-Qaeda-linked Ansar al-Sharia, the Libyan Muslim Brotherhood and the successors to the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group—the group whose network bred the Manchester terror hub.

     The anti-Islamist forces, spearheaded by General Khalifah Haftar’s Libyan National Army, are the most popular and strongest of the approximately 1,700 militias in Libya. It is successful, openly disdains Political Islam, vows to separate mosque and state. Haftar wants to ban the major Islamist forces, including the Muslim Brotherhood and the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, as terrorist organizations.

    There are some reports that Salman Abedi himself might have been injured in 2014 fighting as a member of an Islamist militia battling Haftar’s forces.

    “From day one, the Muslim Brotherhood has served as a Trojan horse, bringing foreign combatants into Libya after they had received training in regional and Western capitals and cities…The Muslim Brotherhood provided them with entry visas or Libyan identity papers, furnished them with weapons and offered logistical support,” Haftar says.

    They openly sought an alliance with the U.S. and Europe, only to be disappointed. The Libyan and Egyptian governments viewed the Obama Administration’s neutrality and urging of a unity government as a pro-Muslim Brotherhood position.

    Egypt and its Libyan allies continue to demand a change in policy. We should remember that they are fighting the same Islamist network whose tentacles in Manchester sparked the May 22 bombing.

  5. The Western security agencies are not on the ball.
    Police escort concert goers from the site of the Ariana Grande concert following last nights attack. (Photo: Dave Thompson/Getty Images)

    MI5 has 500 active investigations and 3,000 subjects of interest. There are reports that there’s an additional 20,000 considered to pose a “residual risk” because they were previously investigated. It appears that Abedi was considered a “residual risk.”

    Abedi was reported to the government 5 times over 5 years by people who felt he posed a serious terrorist threat. This count presumably includes two friends who separately reported him in 2012 and 2016 after he justified suicide bombings and expressed support for terrorism. Members of his own family warned he was “dangerous.”

    He was still able to travel to Libya and Turkey (where he may have entered Syria) without questioning upon his return. He also visited Germany, and the Germans say he did not appear on any watch lists.

    Now it’s being reported the U.S. government told MI5 in early January that Abedi was part of a North African cell of ISIS members plotting an attack on a political target, which was thought to be an assassination. According to the unconfirmed report, the U.S. put Abedi on a watch list in mid-2016 after intercepting some of his communications.

    In another blunder, the U.K. designated the LIFG as a terrorist group in 2005. Ramadan Abedi, a member of LIFG, didn’t move to Libya until 2008. He was never arrested. Perhaps this is because of the difficulty in proving that someone is a “member” of a terrorist group instead of just a “supporter.”

    Ramadan Abedi denies being a member of the LIFG. He says, “I condemn anyone who says I belong to the LIFG, but I praise them.”

    Terrorists are often recruited by family members or close friends. The Abedi family’s ties to LIFG, involvement with a radical mosque, location near so many other terrorists in Manchester, the father’s move to Libya and involvement in the fighting, and various tips should have put him higher up on the priority list.

    When Salman Abedi spent three weeks in Libya, it should have triggered alarm bells in the intelligence system so he’d at least be questioned upon his return to the UK. That didn’t even happen. He committed a suicide bombing at the Manchester Arena shortly thereafter.

Ryan Mauro is ClarionProject.org’s Shillman Fellow and national security analyst and an adjunct professor of counter-terrorism. He is frequently interviewed on top-tier television and radio. To invite Ryan to speak, please contact us.

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Denial Still Flows Over Londonistan

By Melanie Phillips, May 25, 2017:

In the wake of the jihadi human bomb attack in Manchester, Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May said: “We struggle to comprehend the warped and twisted mind that sees a room packed with young children not as a scene to cherish but an opportunity for carnage.”

Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel said: “ It is unbelievable that somebody has used a joyful pop concert to kill or seriously injure so many people.”

A headline in the Washington Post read: “In suburban Manchester, a search for what might have motivated the attacker”.

“Struggle to comprehend”? “Unbelievable”? “What might have motivated the attacker”? Really??

In 2006 I published my book Londonistan which analysed the supine response of the British political, legal and religious establishment to Islamic jihadi terrorism and the Islamisation of Britain. What follows below is the concluding chapter of that book. As the army patrols the streets of Britain to guard against further expected terrorist attacks, my warning about the deadly failure to face up to the true nature of the threat facing the west is surely even more urgent today.

LONDONISTAN CONCLUSION

Britain is in denial. Having allowed the country to turn into a global hub of the Islamic jihad without apparently giving it a second thought, the British establishment is still failing even now — despite the wake-up calls of both 9/11 and the London bomb attacks of 2005 — to acknowledge what it is actually facing and take the appropriate action. Instead, it is deep into a policy of appeasement of the phenomenon that threatens it, throwing sops to both radical Islamism and the Muslim community in a panic-stricken attempt to curry favour and buy off the chances of any further attacks.

This disastrous policy ignores the first law of terrorism which is that it preys on weakness. The only way to defeat it is through strength — the strength of a response based on absolute consistency and moral integrity, which arises in turn from the strength of belief in the values that are being defended. By choosing instead the path of least resistance, Britain is advertising its fundamental weakness and is thus not only greatly enhancing the danger to itself but is also enfeebling the alliance in the defence of the west.

Britain has a long and inglorious history of appeasing terrorism, thus bringing true the aphorism in which its ruling class so cynically believes that ‘terrorism works’. Now, however, this dubious national trait has been cemented even more firmly into the national psyche by the governing doctrine of multiculturalism, which has made it all but impossible even to acknowledge that this is a problem rooted within the religion of a particular minority community. The fervent embrace of ‘victim culture’ means instead that this minority has to be treated on its own assessment as a victim of the majority and its grievances attended to on the basis that it is these grievances which are the cause of terrorism. At the same time, however, this minority disavows any connection with terrorism and vilifies anyone who dares suggest to the contrary. Thus Britain is being forced to act on the basis that if it does not do so it will be attacked — by people who claim that terrorism runs totally counter to the values of their religion, but then demand that the grievances of members of that religion are addressed as the price of averting further attacks. This deeply manipulative and mind-twisting behaviour is the equivalent of holding a gun to Britain’s head while denying that this is being done, and threatening to run out of town anyone who points it out.

The intersection of an aggressive religious fanaticism with the multicultural ideology of victimhood has created a state of paralysis across British institutions. The refusal to admit the religious character of the threat means not only that Britain is failing to take the action it should be taking but, worse still, is providing Islamist ideologues with an even more powerful platform from which to disseminate the anti-western views which have so inflamed a section of Britain’s Muslims. The refusal to acknowledge that this is principally a war of religious ideology, and that dangerous ideas that can kill are spread across a continuum of religious thought which acts as a recruiting-sergeant for violence, is the most egregious failure by the British political and security establishment. The deeply-rooted British belief that violence always arises from rational grievances, and the resulting inability to comprehend the cultural dynamics of religious fanaticism, have furthermore created a widespread climate of irrationality and prejudice in which the principal victims of the war against the west, America and Israel, are demonised instead as its cause.

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Manchester Arena bombed at conclusion of Ariana Grande concert

Long War Journal, by Thomas Joscelyn, May 23, 2017:

An explosion rocked the Manchester Arena in England at the conclusion of an Ariana Grande concert last night. At least 22 people were killed and 59 others wounded by the blast.

The Islamic State has issued a statement claiming responsibility for the bombing. The message doesn’t provide any details about the bomber.

“With Allah’s grace and support, a soldier of the Khilafah managed to place explosive devices in the midst of the gatherings of the Crusaders in the British city of Manchester, in revenge for Allah’s religion, in an endeavor to terrorize the mushrikin [polytheists], and in response to their transgressions against the lands of the Muslims,” the statement reads.

The Islamic State’s claim continues: “The explosive devices were detonated in the shameless concert arena, resulting in 30 Crusaders being killed and 70 others being wounded. And what comes next will be more severe on the worshipers of the Cross and their allies, by Allah’s permission. And all praise is due to Allah, Lord of the creation.”

The statement doesn’t indicate that the attack was carried out by a suicide bomber and implies that multiple improvised explosive devices (IEDs) were used. Also, the Islamic State claims that 30 people were killed, which is more than independent reports say.

It is suspected that a suicide bomber was responsible and it appears that only one bomb was detonated. It is possible that the terrorist responsible accidentally killed himself in the explosion. But the precise details still need to be confirmed.

Manchester police think that a lone individual detonated the IED, but they are investigating the possibility that other people were involved.

“We have been treating this as a terrorist incident and we believe, at this stage, the attack last night was conducted by one man,” Chief Constable Ian Hopkins said in a statement released online. “The priority is to establish whether he was acting along or as part of a network.”

“The attacker, I can confirm, died at the arena,” Hopkins added. “We believe the attacker was carrying an improvise explosive device which he detonated causing this atrocity.”

During a press conference this morning, British Prime Minister Theresa May said that authorities have identified the perpetrator, but his name cannot be publicly confirmed at this time. British officials are attempting to identify any possible accomplices.

Initial reports indicate that the bomb may have been packed with shrapnel, such as nails, nuts or bolts. The first issue of AQAP’s English-language Inspire magazine, which was released in 2010, provided step-by-step instructions on how to build such a device. The article, “Make a bomb in the kitchen of your mom,” instructed followers to “use iron pipes, pressure cookers, fire extinguishers, or empty propane canisters.”

“You need to also include shrapnel,” AQAP explained. “The best shrapnel are the spherical shaped ones.” But AQAP advised that jihadists “may use nails” if “steel pellets are not available.”

Similar explosive devices were used by two brothers in the Apr. 15, 2013 Boston Marathon bombings, which were celebrated in another edition of AQAP’s Inspire.

Improvised explosive devices were also used during the Sept. 2016 attacks in New York and New Jersey. The man accused of committing those bombings, Ahmad Khan Rahami, left behind a notebook in which he cited both Al Qaeda and Islamic State figures.

Although AQAP first sought to inspire would-be jihadists to carry out “lone mujahid” attacks in the West, the Islamic State has had more success in inspiring and guiding such plots since 2014. Islamic State members, such as Reyaad Khan, have used online applications to guide their followers in the UK and elsewhere.

Khan provided his would-be accomplices with “construction plans” for IEDs and also helped them identify “targets,” according to an investigation by the UK Parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee. Khan was killed in Britain’s first targeted drone strike ever in Raqqa, Syria on Aug. 21, 2015. British officials justified the bombing by citing intelligence indicating that Khan and his co-conspirators generated threats on an “unprecedented scale.” [See FDD’s Long War Journal report, Why the UK launched its first targeted drone strike ever.]

Most of the attacks connected to Islamic State in Europe have used vehicles, knives or other means, as opposed to IEDs. For example, a jihadist who struck near the UK Parliament in March drove his vehicle into a crowd, then jumped out and used a blade to assault other people.

A jihadist did use backpack bomb in a July 2016 attack in Ansbach, Germany. That bombing was also claimed by the Islamic State.

Thomas Joscelyn is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Senior Editor for FDD’s Long War Journal.

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