Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Does ISIS Operate in the U.S. and Europe? - Elliot Friedland

by Elliot Friedland

 “Do not ask for anyone’s advice and do not seek anyone’s verdict. Kill the disbeliever whether he is civilian or military, for they have the same ruling. Both of them are disbelievers.”

When there is a terrorist attack and the Islamic State claims responsibility questions are immediately raised. How is Islamic State, the world’s most wanted organization, able to project its power around the world and carry out terrorist attacks without the knowledge of the many security services tasked with tracking the group?

The short answer is that they don’t.

The Islamic State encourages its supporters to carry out attacks anywhere and at any time, without getting in touch with central command. For example, in the latest issue of the Islamic State’s glossy propaganda magazine Dabiq, the Tunisian jihadist Abu Muqatil exhorted ISIS supporters in France to kill the unbelievers immediately.

He said: “I call them to follow the method of the brothers who executed operations in Europe. Weapons are easy to acquire in those countries. Rely upon Allah (‘azza wa jall). I also say to them, do not look for specific targets. Kill anybody. All the kuffār over there are targets. Don’t tire yourself and look for difficult targets. Kill whoever is over there from the kuffār.”

This echoed a similar call made in October 2014 by the Islamic State’s official spokesman Muhammed al-Adnani in a lengthy video address.

He entreated “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.”

Al-Adnani was explicit about not waiting for instructions.

“Do not ask for anyone’s advice and do not seek anyone’s verdict. Kill the disbeliever whether he is civilian or military, for they have the same ruling. Both of them are disbelievers.”

The May 2015 Garland, Texas shooters are not believed to have been sent by Islamic State. They are thought to have been radicalized online.

ABC News reported that one of the gunmen, Elton Simpson, had been in contact with an Islamic State recruiter known as Miski over Twitter.

Miski is the nickname of Muhammed Hassan, a Somali-American who fled Minneapolis as a teenager to join the terrorist group Al-Shabaab in Somalia. In April shortly before the Garland event he tweeted to Simpson: "Where are the warriors of this Ummah [community]?" And then, "The brothers from the Charlie Hebdo attack did their part. It's time for brothers in the #US to do their part."

Amedy Coulibaly, the jihadist who killed four people in an attack on a kosher supermarket in Paris in January pledged allegiance to the Islamic State in an Internet video shortly before he carried out his terror attack. Yet he is also not believed to have been in contact with the Islamic State’s central organization.

Similarly Man Haron Monis, the jihadist who held 17 people hostage in Sydney Australia, pledged allegiance to the Islamic State before he carried out his attack but did not communicate with them prior to the event.

Yet after the event both were praised in the Islamic State’s literature and on their social media.

Would-be jihadists and the Islamic State both benefit by this arrangement. Jihadists gain brand recognition and global fame by affiliating themselves with the world’s most notorious terrorist organization – but do not take on the risks of getting caught that immediately arise when attempting to make contact with Islamic State infrastructure.

The Islamic State gains the ability to project power and a fearsome reputation of being able to strike anywhere and at any time.

The organization claims to have sleeper cells in America ready to strike – 71 fighters across 15 states. It also claims to be on the streets of Rome awaiting the order to carry out attacks. It is possible that these claims are true.

The attacks that have been carried out in the West so far, however, have been overwhelmingly from lone-wolves who have affiliated themselves with the self-declared caliphate, rather than soldiers sent from abroad with instructions to kill.

Elliot Friedland

Source: http://www.clarionproject.org/analysis/islamic-state-%E2%80%93-organization-west

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

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