Westerners Are Flocking to Iraq’s Top Terror Group—and There Seems to Be Very Little We Can Do About It

Mother Jones

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC “-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN” “http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd”>

In May, Moner Mohammed Abusalha, a 22-year-old American who had joined Jabhat al-Nusra, an Al-Qaeda-allied group in Syria, drove a bomb-laden truck into a restaurant in the northern province of Idlib, killing dozens.* Before carrying out this suicide bombing, the New York Times reported last week, Abusalha had briefly returned home to his native Florida. Abusalha’s story underscores a mounting concern among Western national security officials, for though he detonated his truck bomb in Syria he could have easily struck within the US. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s Islamic State, the Sunni extremist group that has seized control of a swath of territory in Syria and northern Iraq, has enlisted thousands of fundamentalist volunteers from Germany, France, the Netherlands, Australia, the US, and elsewhere. Counterterrorism officials fear that jihadists like Abusalha, holding European Union or US passports, can all too easily return to their home countries and possibly import terrorism. US officials, says former New Jersey Gov. Tom Kean, who co-chaired the 9/11 Commission, are “scared, really scared.” FBI Director James Comey recently told reporters that the threat of Westerners with European Union and US passports joining the Islamic State “keeps me up at night” and that he believes another wave of September 11-style attacks are a possibility. Attorney General Eric Holder told ABC News, “in some ways, it’s more frightening than anything I’ve seen as attorney general.”

Recruits have flocked to Baghdadi’s cause from places such as Austria, where in April, two girls, 15 and 16 years old, left their homes in Vienna and flew to Adana, Turkey, leaving notes saying they had “chosen the right path”—that is, they were likely trying to join up with the Islamic State. A month earlier, a young Austrian man, now a foot soldier in Baghdadi’s crusade, posted footage online of Islamic State fighters obliterating a Shia mosque in the Syrian city of Raqqa, according to Der Standard. All told, about 100 young Austrians have left the country to answer Baghdadi’s call for jihadist recruits.

Continue Reading »

Original article – 

Westerners Are Flocking to Iraq’s Top Terror Group—and There Seems to Be Very Little We Can Do About It

This entry was posted in Anchor, ATTRA, Citizen, FF, G & F, GE, LAI, LG, ONA, Oster, PUR, Radius, Uncategorized, Venta and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.