Vehicular Jihad Comes to Barcelona

Meanwhile, on CNN, the denial and willful ignorance continue.

Front Page Magazine, by Robert Spencer, Aug. 18, 2017:

In Spain Thursday, a man drove a truck into a crowd at Barcelona’s popular Costa Dorada area, killing at least 13 and injuring 100. On CNN, Wolf Blitzer asked, “There will be questions about copycats. Questions, if what happened in Barcelona, was at all, at all, a copycat version of what happened in Charlottesville, Virginia.”

No, Wolf, it was a phenomenon with which you and your CNN colleagues have only a glancing familiarity: Islamic jihad. Of course Wolf Blitzer immediately reached for a connection with Charlottesville, because he most likely doesn’t believe that there are Islamic jihadis at all, just mentally ill lone wolves driven to violence by “Islamophobia.” Jihad doesn’t fit his network’s narrative. And vehicular jihad? Wolf has never heard of such a thing.

Last June, the Islamic State published a poster depicting an SUV driving over a heap of skulls and bearing the legend “Run Over Them Without Mercy.”

And the Islamic State issued this call in September 2014:

So O muwahhid, do not let this battle pass you by wherever you may be. You must strike the soldiers, patrons, and troops of the tawaghit. Strike their police, security, and intelligence members, as well as their treacherous agents. Destroy their beds. Embitter their lives for them and busy them with themselves. If you can kill a disbelieving American or European — especially the spiteful and filthy French — or an Australian, or a Canadian, or any other disbeliever from the disbelievers waging war, including the citizens of the countries that entered into a coalition against the Islamic State, then rely upon Allah, and kill him in any manner or way however it may be….If you are not able to find an IED or a bullet, then single out the disbelieving American, Frenchman, or any of their allies. Smash his head with a rock, or slaughter him with a knife, or run him over with your car, or throw him down from a high place, or choke him, or poison him….

Many Muslims in the West have heeded this call. The man who rented the van used in the Barcelona attack was a Muslim from Morocco named Driss Oukabier, who was arrested, while one of his apparent accomplices was killed in a gun battle with police. This could have been just one part of a much larger jihad plot, as Spanish police now believe that a massive explosion in a house in Alcanar, 120 miles south of Barcelona, was also linked to the Barcelona jihad plotters.

There have been many other vehicular jihad attacks. Just last week in France, a Muslim named Hamou Bachirhit six French soldiers with his car in Levallois-Perret, where the headquarters of the DGSI (General Directorate for Internal Security), the country’s primary counter-terrorism intelligence agency, are located. In June, a Muslim drove his car into a crowd on the London Bridge and then jumped out and started stabbing people. We have seen several other vehicular jihadis get out of the car after they plowed into pedestrians, and start stabbing people. In June 2015, a Muslim in Austria drove his car into a crowd, killing three, and then got out and stabbed passersby. Then in November 2016, a Muslim student at Ohio State University named Abdul Razak Ali Artan drove his car into a crowd, then got out and stabbed several others.

There have been many others in 2016 and this year: in Nice, in Berlin, in Jerusalem, in Paris, and elsewhere. Yet on CNN and elsewhere in the establishment media, no analysts have connected the dots between these jihad attacks, which have an obvious connection with one another in sharing the same motivating ideology and the same goal. But Wolf Blitzer readily sees a wholly imaginary connection between Charlottesville (in which a neo-Nazi was imitating jihadis, not the other way around) and Barcelona, because he wishes to exaggerate the importance and influence of white supremacists, while minimizing the magnitude of the jihad threat.

And so it goes in the daily news of the contemporary West: another jihad massacre, and another reason to turn off CNN.

Also see:

Remedial ISIS Tutorial Steers Jihadists Toward Heavier, Deadlier Truck Attacks

A stolen beer truck crashed into an Ahlens department store in Stockholm in a possible terror attack April 7, 2017. (Rex Features via AP Images)

PJ Media, by Bridget Johnson, May 5, 2017:

The Islamic State just published a remedial step-by-step pictorial for lone jihadists on how to use a heavy vehicle to kill, walking would-be terrorists through how to acquire a vehicle and which targets to strike.

ISIS’ monthly Rumiyah magazine, which publishes online in 10 languages including English, last covered vehicle attacks in their November issue “Just Terror Tactics” segment, using Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel, who plowed a cargo truck through a crowd of Bastille Day revelers in Nice, France, last summer, as their key example.

In that article, ISIS encouraged shying away from budget sedans and “off-roaders, SUVs, and four-wheel drive vehicles” that “lack the necessary attributes required for causing a blood bath” as “smaller vehicles lack the weight and wheel span required for crushing many victims.” They recommended trucks with double wheels for “giving victims less of a chance to escape being crushed by the vehicle’s tires.” Long semi trucks were discouraged because of the possibility of jack-knifing.

The terror group encouraged jihadists to find a vehicle with a “metal outer frame which are usually found in older cars, as the stronger outer frame allows for more damage to be caused when the vehicle is slammed into crowds, contrary to newer cars that are usually made of plastics and other weaker materials.” A picture of a U-Haul truck was shown with the caption “an affordable weapon.” A picture of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade was shown with the words “an excellent target.”

Shortly after the article was published, a ram-and-stab attack by Ohio State student Abdul Razak Ali Artan on a sidewalk full of students and faculty caused several injuries, but no fatalities. He used a silver sedan in the attack.

In December, Anis Amri hijacked a Polish semi truck and killed the driver, then plowed the big rig into a Christmas market in Berlin, killing 11.

This March, Khalid Masood rented the Hyundai Tuscon he used to run over five pedestrians on Westminster Bridge before crashing into the palace fence and stabbing a police officer. Last month, Rakhmot Akilov stole a beer truck and drove it down a busy Stockholm shopping street, killing four.

Eager to build on those attacks no matter the IQ of the jihadist, ISIS this week published the how-to with pictures — trying to steer terrorists toward vehicles more like Berlin and Stockholm.

“The ideal vehicle,” says the page, has a “slightly raised chassis and bumper,” is a “double-wheeled, load-bearing truck” that “large in size, heavy in weight” and is “fast in speed or rate of acceleration.”

Then comes the very remedial lesson on where to get the attack vehicle (“kafir” means disbeliever, while “murtadd” means apostate Muslim):

(From ISIS’ Rumiyah magazine)

The suggestions for ideal targets also illustrates examples. Corresponding to “large outdoor festivals, conventions, celebrations, and parades” is a photo of an LGBT event.

A busy London street next to an Underground stop is shown as the “pedestrian-congested streets” example. After “outdoor markets,” ISIS suggests “outdoor rallies,” and uses a photo of a 2012 May Day rally in Paris.

(From ISIS’ Rumiyah magazine)

After the Ohio State attack in which no one suffered life-threatening wounds, ISIS published a similar remedial pictorial telling lone jihadists how to go on stabbing sprees.

In the December issue of Rumiyah, ISIS told knife jihadists to aim for the neck, chest or stomach and to pick a suitable blade while not choosing targets above their skill level.

***

TSA Warns Trucking Companies of ‘Truck-Ramming’ Terrorism Threat

Central Stockholm Shut Down After Terror Truck Attack

Front Page Magazine, by Daniel Greenfield, April 7, 2017:

Terror is the new normal in Western countries with large Muslim populations. Car Jihad has now become ubiquitous and it makes a mockery of gun control arguments.

According to the police, there are 9 seriously injured and 4 dead when the terrorist slammed a hijacked beer truck into a department store. Just as in the London attack, the numbers can easily change. Two children are among the injured. One child is severly hurt.

The attackers fled to the subway. Two men were taken into custody. One appears to have confessed to the attack.

But it’s this part of the account which really captures how thoroughly Islamic terror has put countries on a domestic war footing.

Police discourage people from staying in the city. Police urge people to quickly get away from central Stockholm. Shop employees in the area have been asked to remain in the stores and not go out. Police have also urged people not to move to the Old Town and to the people of Södermalm should stay indoors. – Our general recommendation is to avoid the city at all now, both on foot and in cars, says Lars Byström, spokesperson of the Stockholm police.

That’s how you know there’s a war at home. And if at first they don’t succeed, they will keep trying and trying.

Friday’s crash is near the site of a December 2010 attack in which Taimour Abdulwahab, a Swedish citizen who lived in Britain, detonated a suicide bomb, killing himself and injuring two others.

Abdulwahab rigged a car with explosives in the hope that the blast would drive people to Drottninggatan — the street hit Friday — where he would set off devices strapped to his chest and back. The car bomb never went off, and Abdulwahab died when one of his devices exploded among panicked Christmas shoppers.

His successor appears to have achieved a better death toll. This is the reality we’re all living with. This is what we’re going to be living with until real common sense migration reform that closes the door on terror states is implemented.

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Islamic State propagandist was ‘brainwashing’ children, US military says

Long War Journal, by Thomas Joscelyn, March 3, 2017:

The US military announced today that a senior Islamic State (ISIS) propaganda official was killed in an airstrike on Mar. 25 in Al-Qa’im, Iraq. The propagandist, Ibrahim al-Ansari, was killed along with “four of his associates,” according to Joe Scrocca, the public affairs director for Combined Joint Task Force – Operation Inherent Resolve (CJTF-OIR).

Al-Ansari “was a leader in producing and disseminating propaganda to direct, encourage and instruct terror attacks, as well as to recruit foreign terrorist fighters,” Scrocca said. He “promoted terror attacks against US and Turkish citizens” and was also responsible for “the brainwashing of young children to perpetuate ISIS’s brutal message,” Scrocca added.

The Islamic State is not only “brainwashing” children, but has also used dozens of them in suicide bombings, including during its defense of the city of Mosul. And the group openly boasts of using children in its vehicle-borne improvised explosive device (VBIED) attacks. See FDD’s Long War Journal report, Islamic State uses improvised weapons of war in Mosul, Iraq, for two photos of children recently used in VBIED operations. The Islamic State’s propaganda machine regularly produces many more examples.

Some of the organization’s gruesome videos also feature children performing executions on behalf of their elders.

Al-Ansari’s “propaganda encouraged ISIS followers to conduct knife attacks, vehicle attacks and arson attacks against American and other Western citizens,” Scrocca explained. “This strike will disrupt ISIS’s ability to create propaganda — propaganda to [incite] terror into the region as well as in our homeland, and has struck communications between other ISIS members.”

The US and its coalition partners have repeatedly targeted the jihadists’ senior media personnel. This effort goes back to the height of the Iraq War, when al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) became a prolific producer of videos, photos and other media. AQI and its successor, the Islamic State, have repeatedly replaced these propagandists. But the targeted strikes do, at times, slow the group’s ability to produce content.

Al-Ansari was not alone in promoting knife and vehicle attacks. This is one of the Islamic State’s long-standing themes.

For example, the group’s first spokesman, Abu Muhammad al Adnani, implored followers to use such crude tools in the West. “The best thing you can do is to strive to your best and kill any disbeliever, whether he be French, American, or from any of their allies,” Adnani said in one speech (titled, “Indeed Your Lord Is Ever Watchful”). Adnani continued: “If you are not able to find an IED or a bullet, then single out the disbelieving American, Frenchman, or any of their allies. Smash his head with a rock, or slaughter him with a knife, or
run him over with your car, or throw him down from a high place, or choke him, or poison him.”

Adnani was killed in a US airstrike near Al Bab, Syria in Aug. 2016. Another jihadist, known as Abu al Hassan al Muhajir, was announced as Adnani’s successor in Dec. 2016. In his first message, al Muhajir promoted attacks Turkey and the West.

The Islamic State has continued to promulgate Adnani’s guidance long after his death. The third issue of Rumiyah (Rome) magazine, which was released in Nov. 2016, included an article devoted to vehicle attacks that was entitled, “Just Terror Tactics.” The author wrote: “Having a secondary weapon, such as a gun or a knife, is also a great way to combine a vehicle attack with other forms of attacks. Depending on what is obtained, the kill count can be maximized and the level of terror resulting from the attack can be raised.”

The so-called caliphate’s followers have apparently followed through with this advice on multiple occasions, sometimes using knives, trucks, or both. Just weeks after Rumiyah was published last November, a Somali refugee named Abdul Razak Ali Artan drove his car into a crowd of people at Ohio State University before exiting the vehicle and using a knife to assault his victims. Eleven people were hospitalized as a result. Artan was quickly shot dead by a campus police officer. Amaq News Agency, the Islamic State’s main propaganda arm, claimed afterwards that Artan was a “soldier” of the caliphate.

On Mar. 22, Khalid Masood drove his car into a crowd near the British parliament in London and then jumped out and used a blade to assault others. Four people were killed and dozens more wounded. Amaq again claimed that Masood was a “soldier” of the caliphate. Still other Islamic State supporters have driven their vehicles into large gatherings elsewhere.

The Islamic State celebrates its media personnel as “martyrs” after they are killed either in combat, or in airstrikes by the US-led coalition. For instance, the two photos below purportedly depict members of the group’s propaganda division who were recently killed. The first one was identified Abu Ibrahim al-Iraqi.

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

Also see:

David Wood explains vehicular jihad

Published on Mar 28, 2017 by Acts17Apologetics

http://www.answeringmuslims.com
In the past year, we’ve seen vehicular terrorist attacks in France, the United States, Germany, and Great Britain. Given the success of these attacks, we certainly haven’t seen the last of them. Hence, our task now should be to understand vehicular jihad, so that we can eventually stop such attacks.

In this video, David Wood explains the rise of vehicular jihad.

Also see:

For more on jihad, be sure to watch these videos:

“Three Stages of Jihad”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ERou_…

“The Jihad Triangle”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qjvfa…

“Top Ten Quran Verses for Understanding ISIS”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LXBgq…

“Three Questions for Moderate Muslims”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lpR0q.

London Terrorist Followed the Jihadist’s Twisted Path From Prison to Terrorist

by Patrick Dunleavy
IPT News
March 27, 2017

Before he drove violently into the crowd on Westminster Bridge, before plunging the knives into the police officer’s body, Khalid Masood‘s twisted path into terrorism followed an all too familiar pattern from petty crimes to prison radicalization, to violent jihadist.

Radical Islamist terrorism once again struck innocent victims in Europe, this time killing four people in London and injuring at least 50 more.

Radical Islamist terrorist organizations like ISIS recommend the instruments of cruelty used in this attack, a motor vehicle and a knife. They have been used in the past to kill non-believers in Berlin, Nice, Woolwich, Jerusalem, Quebec, Oklahoma City and beyond.

The emerging profile of the terrorist, Khalid Masood, also paints an all too familiar image of a jihadist bent on killing as many people as possible on the path to paradise.

Masood, a 52-year-old UK native, was born on Christmas day in Kent as Adrian Elms and was raised as a Christian. He was known as an intelligent student and an excelling athlete during his time in Huntley School for Boys. He spiraled downward from there, starting with a 1983 arrest for property damage. He spent at least two periods in three different HMPS correctional facilities, including for assault.

It was there in prison where he was believed to have been radicalized. The susceptibility of an inmate in British prisons to Islamist radicalization is well documented. Extremist literature, like ISIS’s Inspire magazine, is present, as well as convicted terrorists who exert undue influence on the general prison population.

The vast majority of imprisoned terrorists refuse to attend any de-radicalization programs, leading former Scotland Yard Counter Terrorism Commander Richard Walton to tell Sky News that “very few” inmates convicted for ISIS-related crimes had reformed. Other critics go even further, noting “that many “deradicalization” programs established by Western governments have been fraught with repeated and embarrassing failures.”

Hanif Qadir, a former jihadist, believes that prison chaplains are unable to address the problem. Many of them may sympathize with a form of Islam that is both Wahhabi and Salafist in nature. This problem, unvetted Islamic clergy, was also found to exist in the U.S. prison system, according to a report done by the inspector general for the Department of Justice in 2004.

Government records show that thousands of articles by Islamist ideologues like Hasan al Banna, founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, Syed Qutb, and Anwar al-Awlaki have been available in U.S. prison libraries.

My book, The Fertile Soil of Jihad, documented how ex-cons have often followed up their prison radicalization with travel to Islamist hotspots in the Middle East for further indoctrination. Masood went down that road as well.

He traveled to Saudi Arabia and worked there for several years after his release, settling upon his return into Luton, a city well known for radical Islamist elements, including the radical Islamic cleric Anjem Choudary, now serving time in prison for terrorism-related crimes. It was sometime after returning to the UK that Masood became a person of interest in an ongoing terrorism investigation, although MI-5 never connected him directly to any specific terror plot. He simply fell off the radar until Wednesday’s attack in London.

An alarming number of terror plots and attacks involve people who started out as criminals, were radicalized in prison, and then re-entered society bent on killing in the name of Allah. The 2010 New York State Police Vigilance Report found that almost 50 percent of people charted with terrorist-related crimes had prior contact with the criminal justice system. The Paris and Brussels attacks were in part carried out by former inmates. The Berlin, Copenhagen, and Toulouse attacks were similarly committed by individuals radicalized in prison.

Islamist radicalization in the prison system is a global problem that must be recognized and addressed effectively. Yet some groups, like the Anti Defamation League, choose to focus more on the threat posed by white supremacist prison gangs and appear to overlook the threat posed by radicalized Islamist ex-cons, some of whom have specifically targeted the Jewish population for attacks.

Examples include the Newburgh Four plot to bomb a New York synagogue, Mohammed Merah’s shooting attack on a Jewish school in Toulouse, France, and Amedy Coulibaly’s massacre inside a Paris kosher grocery store.

As to which is the greater threat, prison gangs or Islamist radicalization, Kevin Smith, the former Assistant U.S. Attorney who successfully prosecuted a group of inmates who formed a terrorism cell within the California Department of Corrections known as Jam’iyyat Ul-Islam Is-Saheeh (JIS), articulated it most succinctly when he testified before the House Committee for Homeland Security looking into the threat posed by Islamist radicalization in the prison system. Smith said, “It is my professional opinion that this particular group of radicalized inmates presents an exponentially greater danger to innocent individuals and civilians out on the outside.”

Members of most prison gangs do not blow up themselves (and others) to gain 70 virgins.

Counter terrorism authorities have an opportunity now to act decisively against this group of potential terrorist recruits before the next attack occurs. Prison is a controlled environment. Radical literature must be removed. Clergy must be better vetted. And inmate associations and communications must be better monitored. Prison officials do not need a FISA warrant to listen to an inmate’s telephone call or read his mail.

Monitoring terrorists who are about to be released from prison must be enhanced to include a registry, much like that required for sex offenders, that gives authorities the ability to know where the subject is living and working. Information regarding radicalized inmates must be shared between correctional, law enforcement and intelligence agencies seamlessly. The present system of cooperation is sporadic and often subject to turf wars.

Without these tools, we again will be forced to watch the familiar story of the common criminal turned violent terrorist unfold.

IPT Senior Fellow Patrick Dunleavy is the former Deputy Inspector General for New York State Department of Corrections and author of The Fertile Soil of Jihad. He currently teaches a class on terrorism for the United States Military Special Operations School.

London Parliament attack was straight out of the ISIS playbook

A man is treated by British officials following the attack outside the House of Parliament in London. Getty Images

New York Post, by  Paul Sperry, March 26, 2017:

Using vehicles to mow down pedestrians, as horrified Londoners witnessed Wednesday, is a terrorist tactic right out of the ISIS playbook. Instead of driving heavy trucks, the terror group’s followers are now using smaller vehicles with similar devastating effect — making it even harder to detect and foil such brutal attacks.

The terror group, which took credit for the London attack, has specifically called on followers to weaponize vehicles and kill “infidels” gathered in outdoor spaces throughout the West.

In November, it instructed such terrorists to drive at “a high speed into a large congregation of kufar (infidel), smashing their bodies with the vehicle’s strong outer frame, while advancing forward – crushing their heads, torsos and limbs under the vehicle’s wheels and chassis – and leaving behind a trail of carnage.”

Sickeningly, the order, which added gruesome detail to a similar 2013 exhortation, encouraged drivers to use “a gun or a knife” to increase “the kill count.”

Allegedly following such orders, ISIS-claimed “soldier” Khalid Masood rented a small Hyundai SUV and ran down tourists walking along London’s Westminster Bridge, killing four and hospitalizing 29, before storming Parliament and stabbing a police officer to death.

Such vehicle-mounted terrorist attacks are effective — and increasingly popular — because they defeat Western security systems, which are designed to screen for bombs and guns. Unlike conventional weapons, motor vehicles are cheap and easy to obtain, and require little training to use.

And there’s no shortage of vulnerable targets. ISIS advises hitting “large outdoor conventions and celebrations, pedestrian-congested streets, outdoor markets, festivals, parades (and) political rallies.” Times Square, the Coney Island boardwalk and the Thanksgiving Day Parade all fall within that target list. (So, for that matter, do candlelight vigils to mourn the victims of such attacks.)

Al-Qaeda has also urged jihadists to plow vehicles into large crowds of innocent bystanders, going so far as to suggest wielding steel blades on bumpers to “achieve maximum carnage,” according to a 2010 article in its propaganda rag.

It’s plain from recent attacks that vehicles have become the jihadists’ weapon of choice. The London assault, which was followed the next day by a copycat strike in Brussels foiled by police, was the third deadly car attack in Europe in less than a year. They follow a pattern of similar incidents:

  • January: An ISIS-inspired Palestinian terrorist driving a large truck jumped a curb and killed four Israeli soldiers; and earlier that month, German police arrested an ISIS-tied Syrian immigrant for plotting to use police cars to ram into New Year’s Eve crowds.
  • December 2016: A Tunisian immigrant hijacked a truck and killed 12 shoppers in a Berlin Christmas market.
  • July 2016: An Islamic terrorist in Nice, France, rented a 19-ton cargo truck and plowed into a Bastille Day crowd, killing 86 and injuring 484.
  • 2014: A driver shouting “Allah Akbar!” crashed his car into pedestrians in Nantes, France, killing one and wounding nine.
  • 2014: An ISIS follower in Quebec struck two Canadian soldiers with a car, killing one and injuring the other.
  • 2014: A Palestinian terrorist swerved off the road and slammed into a crowd in Jerusalem, killing an American baby girl and another tourist.

Could it happen here? It already has. In fact, an Iranian-American student may have started the trend in 2006, when he rammed a rented Jeep into a crowd at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, injuring nine. Mohammed Reza Taheri-azar said he was taking revenge for “the deaths of Muslims worldwide.”

Last November, another Muslim student at Ohio State University rammed a car into a crowd and stabbed several people. ISIS called Abdul Razak Ali Artan, who said on Facebook he was protesting “the killing of the Muslims in Burma,” a “soldier.”

What can be done to foil such attacks? Adding barriers between streets and walkways with heavy foot traffic — as they have done in Times Square — for starters. Masood was able to mount the payment along the Westminster Bridge because there are no bollards between the street and sidewalk; and he was able to build speeds in excess of 70 mph because there are no obstacles, such as concrete flower pots, on the sidewalk itself. The large pots, reinforced with steel bars, are commonly used as security barricades.

“Blocker trucks” can also be deployed. After Berlin, NYPD used hundreds of dump trucks to protect pedestrians celebrating New Year’s Eve at Times Square and the Coney boardwalk. Sanitation trucks were also stationed along last year’s Thanksgiving parade.

During last month’s Mardi Gras, New Orleans police deployed portable steel walls that were raised electronically at night to protect Bourbon Street crowds from car attacks.

London authorities, in contrast, reportedly opted for a “lower-key” approach to protecting the tourist area around Parliament in reaction to Nice and Berlin.

Since many of the vehicles used in recent attacks have been rentals, NYPD and other police have been checking with auto rental agencies, especially large truck rental locations, for suspicious renters. Red flags include: SUV or truck rentals, no previous history of rentals, and customers with Arabic surnames, religious head coverings or beards and behaving nervously at the counter.

Reporting to authorities signs of surveillance, casing and targeting by suspicious individuals can also help thwart car attacks. ISIS advises would-be terrorists to survey the route of attack they’ve mapped out — including on the day of attack — for “obstacles, such as posts, signs, barriers, humps, bus stops, dumpsters, etc., which is important for sidewalk-mounted attacks.”

Sperry, former Hoover Institution media fellow, is author of several books on terrorism including the bestseller “Infiltration.”