Islamic Radicalization in the Military Surfaces Again

In November 2009, U.S. Army psychiatrist Major Nidal Hasan opened fire on fellow soldiers at a Fort Hood, Texas processing facility, killing 13 people and wounding 30 others. An ensuing investigation determined Hasan had exhibited outward signs of his Islamist radicalization to fellow Army officers. Even though his superiors were aware, officials did nothing to counter Hasan's radicalization nor his position in the Army.

In July 2011, another U.S. Army soldier, Naser Jason Abdo, was arrested by the FBI near Fort Hood with bomb making materials and a firearm. He planned to bomb his fellow soldiers at a nearby restaurant and shoot any survivors trying to escape to safety. Abdo was convicted for attempting use of a weapon of mass destruction and sentenced to life imprisonment. Abdo told his mother the reason for his actions was religion.

There have been other cases of Islamic radicals in uniform, to include here. The latest case appeared Saturday, with the arrest of U.S. Army Sgt. First Class Ikaika Kang in Hawaii on federal terrorism charges. An FBI affidavit describes Kang's radicalization process beginning as early as 2011. Kang publicly expressed his radical Islamic intentions, to include his support for ISIS and his desire to commit violence against fellow soldiers. The Army, in response, merely temporarily revoked Kang's security clearance in 2012 but reinstated it in 2013 after Kang "complied with military requirements stemming from the investigation."

By early 2016, the affidavit says, "it appeared that Kang was becoming radicalized" and the Army referred the matter to the FBI that August. From December 2016 to March 2017, the Army provided "negative counseling" to Kang, apparently in an attempt to counter his radicalization that included his pro-ISIS statements to his fellow service members. Among them, if deployed to Iraq he would not shoot at ISIS fighters, that U.S. military personnel were terrorists and the 9/11 attacks were an inside job by the U.S. government.

The Kang case demonstrates the longstanding military practice of genuflection before the altar of political correctness remains. Lethal lessons from Fort Hood have not been learned. Outside the military, the government's Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) program founded under the prior administration sought to downplay radical Islamic terrorism and up-focus "right-wing" extremism, even when facts and statistics failed that narrative. The current administration has begun the effort to turn that CVE process in the better direction, but that process is not easy.

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By IPT News  |  July 11, 2017 at 5:11 pm  |  Permalink

Palestinian Group Hosts Terrorist Fundraising Event in Germany

The Democratic Committee of Palestine hosted an event in Berlin Saturday to raise money for the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) terrorist group, according to the Berlin daily Tagesspiegl and reported by the Jerusalem Post.

The event reportedly took place in the building that also hosts Neues Deutschland's publishing house – a socialist newspaper.

A recent NGO Monitor report outlines how several European governments fund organizations with PFLP links. The PFLP is a Marxist-Leninist terrorist organization designated by the EU and other Western states. These NGOs often justify attacks against Israeli civilians and maintain ties to known terrorists.

According to the NGO Monitor report, PFLP operatives founded some of the listed organizations directly, while other groups include staff members who were convicted of terrorism-related charges by Israeli courts. These so-called human rights organizations are at the forefront for the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, while prominent individuals within some of the NGOs are known to promote violence and anti-Semitism.

Berlin Mayor Michael Müller faced criticism for not blocking the PFLP fundraiser. Müller also faced backlash for allowing Hizballah sympathizers and members to participate in an annual al-Quds Day march in Berlin last month.

There are roughly 250 active Hizballah operatives in Berlin and a total of 950 Hizballah members throughout Germany, according to a 2014 Berlin intelligence report summarized by the Jerusalem Post. Though the number of Hizballah supporters in Germany is believed to be far higher.

While the European Union, including Germany, designated Hizballah's military wing as a terrorist entity, Germany allows Hizballah's political wing to operate freely.

Recent developments suggest that political and fundraising groups affiliated with Palestinian terrorist organizations are tolerated in Germany as well.

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By IPT News  |  July 11, 2017 at 4:36 pm  |  Permalink

Students for Justice in Palestine Normalizes Hatred

Photo: NYU SJP / Facebook

Three terrorists are shot and killed after fatally stabbing a police officer. A student activist group echoes social media accounts calling their deaths an "execution."

This warped reaction can only involve Israel and those bent on its destruction.

In this case, three Palestinians attacked and killed Israeli border police officer Hadas Malka outside Jerusalem's Damascus Gate before being killed by other officers nearby. Student's for Justice in Palestine (SJP) expressed its displeasure by sharing a Facebook post that states, "Three Palestinian teens were executed this evening by Zionist occupation forces at the Damascus Gate in occupied Jerusalem..."

ISIS claimed responsibility for Malka's murder. Hamas praised the attack, the Jerusalem Post reported, "but disputed Islamic State's claim, stating that the perpetrators were affiliated with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine."

Terrorist organizations therefore are competing for credit in killing a 23-year-old woman. SJP could have condemned her death, or it could have stayed silent. Instead, it turned the attack into an opportunity to accuse Israel of wrongdoing.

Such twisted logic is entirely consistent for SJP.

Its University of Chicago chapter hosted convicted felon Rasmieh Odeh in May. Odeh spent 10 years in an Israeli prison after being convicted for her role in a 1969 Jerusalem supermarket bombing that killed two students.

SJP's New York University chapter managed to turn the controversial police shootings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile into an attack on Israel exactly one year ago: "We must remember that many US police departments train with the #IsraeliDefenseForces," the group wrote on it Facebook page. "The same forces behind the genocide of black people in America are behind the genocide of Palestinians."

The Fordham University dean of students faced backlash after banning an SJP chapter on his campus because he said it was hard to accept a group whose entire focus was delegitimizing one country only, Israel.

SJP consistently spews anti-Semitic sentiments as well as hatred for the state of Israel. As such, it is quite skilled at making noise and getting attention, but less successful in accomplishing any of its goals.

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By Ariel Behar  |  July 7, 2017 at 4:40 pm  |  Permalink

Study: European Muslims Perpetrate Disproportionate Number of Anti-Semitic Attacks

A disproportionate number of perpetrators of anti-Semitic violence in Western Europe are "individuals of Muslim background," a rigorous new study shows.

Johannes Due Enstad authored the study, "Antisemitic Violence in Europe, 2005-2015," jointly published this month by the Center for Studies of the Holocaust and Religious Minorities and Center for Research on Extremism (C-REX) at the University of Oslo. The report systematically compares anti-Semitic violence in various countries, relying on incident data compiled from police reports and a 2012 survey on anti-Semitism carried out by the European Union's Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA).

The study examines seven countries, including France, the United Kingdom, Sweden, and Germany. Among respondents within these four countries, victims of anti-Semitic violence and threats "most often perceived the perpetrator(s) to be 'someone with a Muslim extremist view'." France experiences the highest level of violent anti-Semitic incidents in the broader sample.

From "Antisemitic Violence in Europe, 2005-2015", p 17

"It is also worth noting that in France, Sweden and the UK (but not in Germany) the perpetrator was perceived to be left-wing more often than right-wing," the study's author finds.

As opposed to the Western European experience, right-wing extremists exclusively perpetrate reported incidents of violent anti-Semitism in Russia, despite hosting Europe's biggest Muslim population and a relatively large Jewish constituency. These stark differences suggest that it is important to differentiate between particular Muslim communities and radicalization processes across Europe.

"Country of origin appears to play a major role, as does the level of religiosity—the more religious people are, the more anti-Semitic they are likely to be," the study concludes.

The study also shows that while there is a marked increase in anti-Semitic violence associated with major episodes in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, not all surges in Middle East tensions lead to more attacks against Jews in Europe. Though events in the Middle East may offer opportunities for potential violent offenders to lash out, the study's author argues that "anti-Semitic attitudes and violence propensity are likely necessary conditions to trigger such attacks."

With Muslim perpetrators conducting the bulk of anti-Semitic violence across Western Europe, it is no surprise that the report also finds that Muslims in the region maintain significantly higher levels of anti-Semitic attitudes compared to the general population. This finding has been corroborated by several recent studies focusing on anti-Semitism among Europe's Muslim communities.

For example, the Institute for the Study of Global Anti-Semitism and Policy (ISGAP) published a study in 2015 showing that Muslims have been responsible for a "disproportionate" number of anti-Semitic attacks and incidents in Europe over the last 15 years.

That study examined several surveys related to European Muslim attitudes conducted since 2006 and compares results from various European countries, with an emphasis on the United Kingdom and France. Most of those surveys focused on respondents' views toward Jewish stereotypes, asking subjects whether they agree with statements such as, "the Jews have too much power in politics" and "the Jews have too much power in the media." In each country under study, the number of Muslims agreeing with those anti-Semitic statements far exceeded that of non-Muslims.

Though the ISGAP report acknowledged that surveys comparing Muslim and non-Muslim beliefs are subject to criticism, "the sum of available studies to date provides strong evidence that the level of anti-Semitism is indeed particularly high among Muslims."

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By IPT News  |  June 30, 2017 at 7:39 pm  |  Permalink

Hizballah-linked Paraguayan is Charged in Miami in a Drug Conspiracy

A Paraguayan man with ties to Hizballah pleaded not guilty in Miami federal court on Monday, after being charged with conspiring to distribute massive amounts of cocaine to the United States, the Miami Herald reports.

Paraguay's authorities arrested Ali Issa Chamas in August at an international airport for attempting to smuggle 39 kilos of cocaine. Chamas was extradited to Miami in June and now awaits trial.

But Chamas' indictment failed to reference his intimate relationship to Hizballah associates and operatives.

Chamas is of Lebanese origin and lived in Paraguay over the last decade. In addition to Brazil and Argentina, Paraguay is part of the Tri-Border Area (TBA), a region that enables Hizballah to cultivate a major base of operations. With a large Muslim population featuring significant numbers of Hizballah sympathizers, the terrorist organization uses this area for recruitment, arms smuggling and drug trafficking, and logistics planning for terrorist operations.

The State Department has stated that the TBA remains "an important regional nexus of arms, narcotics, pirated goods, human smuggling, counterfeiting, and money laundering – all potential funding sources for terrorist organizations."

Hizballah also relies on legitimate businesses and front organizations in the region, diversifying its terrorist financing profile to generate a significant portion of its revenues from its Latin American operations.

With Venezuelan government help, the terrorist group continues to expand its presence and consolidate support in other Latin American countries. The Treasury Department revealed that Venezuela's Vice President Tareck El Aissami maintains intimate ties to Hizballah and helped coordinate narcotics shipments to drug cartels operating on the U.S. border, including Mexico's infamous Los Zetas. In 2011, Virginia prosecutors said that a Lebanese man helped the Mexican Los Zetas drug cartel smuggle of more than 100 tons of Colombian cocaine. The U.S. Treasury Department claimed that Hizballah benefitted financially from the criminal network.

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By IPT News  |  June 27, 2017 at 4:01 pm  |  Permalink

Muslim Brotherhood Affiliate Claims Responsibility for Cairo Attack

The Muslim Brotherhood-linked Hasm Movement claimed responsibility for a deadly terrorist attack targeting Egyptian security forces in Cairo on Sunday.

Its operatives detonated an "anti-vehicle explosive device" under a road "at the Maadi Autostrada south of Cairo... which led to the destruction of the military vehicle and the killing of two officers and the wounding of three other soldiers who still fighting death," said a Hasm Movement statement released shortly after the attack and translated by the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT).

Intelligence collected by Egypt's interior ministry suggests that the Muslim Brotherhood is establishing "terrorist entities," including the Hasm Movement and others, to carry out attacks in an attempt to conceal the Brotherhood's responsibility.

In May, Najah Ibrahim, a former leader of the terrorist organization Gamma'a Islamiya, revealed these terrorist offshoots consist of Muslim Brotherhood youth seeking to escalate violence against the Egyptian regime. Ibrahim told al-Hayat news that some Brotherhood leaders encouraged the terrorist groups to commit violence, according to an IPT translation.

Part of the terrorist group's justification for Sunday's attack alluded to Egypt's controversial and impending transfer of two small islands in the Red Sea to Saudi Arabia.

"The continuation of the criminal coup [Egyptian] regime in selling the homeland, giving up its land and capabilities ... obliges us to undertake more resistance activity to tear them off the chest of this helpless people," the statement said.

Muslim Brotherhood figures continue to engage in violence incitement and encouraging others to conduct terrorist attacks.

In April, a senior Muslim Brotherhood member, 'Izz Al-Din Dwedar, called for an "intifada" targeting Egyptian embassies around the world, in a Facebook post translated by The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).

In protest of death sentences handed to members of the Brotherhood in Egypt, Dwedar suggested for violent action on May 3.

Egyptians abroad should "protest [outside] Egyptian embassies and lay siege to them, and steadily escalate [their actions], up to and including raiding the embassies in some countries, disrupting their work and occupying them if possible, in order to raises awareness to our cause," Dwedar wrote.

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By IPT News  |  June 19, 2017 at 1:53 pm  |  Permalink

Former Obama DHS Adviser Tweets Support for Qatar

A former Homeland Security Advisory Council (HSAC) member with Muslim Brotherhood sympathies expressed support for Qatar this week, as the Gulf State finds itself increasingly isolated for its terror support.

Even the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) called on Qatar to halt its terror support, but Mohamed Elibiary retweeted several statements supporting the Gulf emirate. "Qatar is a land of civilization, peace, success, love, vision, respect, cooperation and challenge: international report (UN)," said one post Elibiary reposted.

Another retweet shows Gazans rallying in support of Qatar five days after Saudi Arabia and its allies announced a blockade.

"People should not be surprised that many in West support Qatar & rightly see the coordinated KSA-UAE-Trump blockade as unjust. #QatarCrisis," Elibiary said in a June 11 Facebook post. In May, Elibiary insinuated that Egypt's Coptic Christians had it coming when ISIS attacked them.

"Reading ISIS's latest mag 'otherizing' Egypt's Copts. Subhanallah how what goes around comes around. Coptic ldrs did same to MB Egyptians," Elibiary tweeted on May 7.

Elibiary served on the DHS advisory council until early 2014. He whipped up a firestorm with tweets suggesting that the restoration of the Caliphate was inevitable after ISIS began its rampage across Iraq and Syria.

"Y'all in the #NatSec ubber hawks camp misread 9/11 & should reassess ur belligerence. #CSP #IPT #Blaze," Elibiary tweeted.

He also drew criticism in 2013 for describing America as an "Islamic country" with an "Islamically compliant constitution."

Elibiary has praised the late Muslim Brotherhood ideologue Sayyid Qutb, whose ideas have undergirded the modern jihadist movement – especially Qutb's call for violent jihad and for the purification of Islam from the forces of unbelief.

Researcher Patrick Poole reported in 2011 that Elibiary accessed confidential information from a Texas state database and shopped it to journalists in hopes of harming then Gov. Rick Perry. Rep. Louis Gohmert, R-Texas, confronted then Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano at a 2012 congressional hearing about Elibiary's actions. Napolitano deflected Gohmert's criticism suggesting he only cared because Elibiary was Muslim.

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By John Rossomando  |  June 14, 2017 at 6:15 pm  |  Permalink

Most Bavarian Muslim Refugees Hold Anti-Semitic Beliefs, Study Shows

More than half of Muslim refugees in the German state of Bavaria hold anti-Semitic sentiments, according to a new study by the Hanns Seidel Foundation and reported by the Jerusalem Post.

Their poll of 800 asylum seekers found that Muslim refugees exhibited "clear tendencies of an anti-Semitic attitude pattern."

Respondents were asked whether "Jews have too much influence in the world." 52 percent of Syrians, 53 percent of Iraqis, and 60 percent of Afghans agreed with the assertion, while only 5.4 percent of Eritreans surveyed believed in this anti-Semitic worldview. Eritrea is a Christian-majority country.

Among the overall German population, 20 percent agreed with the anti-Semitic statement.

The investigators conclude that religion is "the decisive factor that explains anti-Semitic opinions." In addition, education in the refugees' homelands facilitates "antisemitism in all age groups and educational background of Muslim asylum seekers."

"We are importing Islamic extremism, Arab antisemitism, national and ethnic conflicts of other peoples as well as a different societal and legal understanding," concludes a 2015 German intelligence report concerning migrant integration. "German security agencies... will not be in the position to solve these imported security problems and thereby the arising reactions from the Germany's population."

The Institute for the Study of Global Anti-Semitism and Policy (ISGAP) published a study in 2015 showing that Muslims are responsible for a "disproportionate" number of anti-Semitic attacks and incidents in Europe over the last 15 years.

That study examined several surveys related to European Muslim attitudes conducted since 2006 and compares results from various European countries, with an emphasis on the United Kingdom and France. Most of those surveys focused on respondents' views toward Jewish stereotypes, asking subjects whether they agree with statements such as, "the Jews have too much power in politics" and "the Jews have too much power in the media." In each country under study, the number of Muslims agreeing with those anti-Semitic statements far exceeded that of non-Muslims.

For example, a 2014 French study showed that 25 percent of the general public agreed with the statement "Jews have too much power in the economy and the financial world," compared with 67 percent of the Muslim population.

Though the ISGAP report acknowledged that surveys comparing Muslim and non-Muslim beliefs are subject to criticism, "the sum of available studies to date provides strong evidence that the level of anti-Semitism is indeed particularly high among Muslims."

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By IPT News  |  June 6, 2017 at 11:22 am  |  Permalink

Dar al-Hijrah Imam Endorses (Partial) Female Genital Mutilation

Female genital mutilation (FGM) can be an effective tool to prevent promiscuity among girls, the imam at a prominent northern Virginia mosque claimed in a recent lecture flagged by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).

Without it, "hyper-sexuality takes over the entire society and a woman is not satisfied with one person or two or three," said Dar al-Hijrah Islamic Center Imam Shaker Elsayed in a May 19 talk, "Foundation of a Happy Family." Only tip of a girl's clitoris should be cut, he said, otherwise it creates "serious harm in the sexual life of the child when she grows up. And this is why the West thinks of alkhikah as sexual mutilation..."

The video remains posted on the Falls Church, Va. mosque's YouTube channel.

Muslim societies which prohibit FGM are making a mistake "to prohibit the tradition and they end up causing a lot of damage on the other extreme side of the sexual life of a woman," Elsayed said.

He isn't the only prominent voice in the U.S. Muslim community endorsing female genital mutilation. The Assembly of Muslim Jurists in America (AMJA) endorses the practice in two fatwas posted on its website, using justifications similar to Elsayed's. While not required, one fatwa says, "it is considered an honorable thing for females."

Islamist advocates argue that FGM has nothing to do with Islam.

After several Detroit area doctors were charged with violating Michigan's ban on female genital mutilation in April, activist Linda Sarsour denounced denouncing the practice as contrary to Islam.

"FGM has no place in Detroit or anywhere else in the world. FGM is barbaric & not an Islamic practice," Sarsour wrote.

She should target that message to its proponents. Sarsour spoke at a fundraiser at Elsayed's mosque six days before his talk on female anatomy and promiscuity. FGM did not come up, but Sarsour described Islam's prophet Mohammed as "a feminist in his own right."

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By John Rossomando  |  June 2, 2017 at 12:54 pm  |  Permalink

Air Force Vet Sentenced to 35 Years for Attempting to Join ISIS

A former member of the U.S. Air Force was sentenced to 35 years in prison for trying to provide material support to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Tairod Nathan Webster Pugh was an Air Force avionics instrument system specialist from 1986-1990 and worked as an airplane mechanic for companies in the U.S. and the Middle East.

U.S. District Judge Nicholas G. Garaufis reportedly applauded Pugh's military service while meting out the long sentence, but noted it was "a long time ago" and that Pugh's decision to join ISIS is "a very sad thing."

Court records trace Pugh's radicalization to 2013, when he was working with Kalitta Air, an air transportation company in Dubai. A co-worker saw Pugh watching jihadi content online, including images accompanied by messages such as, "If fighting for my religious freedom makes me a terrorist, I am a terrorist."

In late 2014, he made several comments supporting ISIS to his co-workers while working with a charter airline company in Kuwait City. He told a co-worker about an ISIS advertisement "looking for pilots and mechanics, and they are paying big salaries."

Computer records show Pugh started extensively viewing and downloading ISIS propaganda videos in late 2014 and early 2015, searching for ways to travel to Syria to join ISIS. A search of Pugh's laptop revealed searches for "borders controlled by Islamic state," ISIS propaganda videos such as "Flames of War" and "Virtues of Seeking Martyrdom" and execution videos.

An execution video showed ISIS executioner "Jihadi John" holding up the severed head of American aid worker Peter Kassig and rebuking then-President Obama for refusing to withdraw U.S. forces from Iraq. "The spark has been lit here in Iraq and its heat will continue to intensify by Allah's permission until it burns the Crusader army," al-Qaida in Iraq leader Sheikh Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi said in the video.

"That the defendant saved this video, among many others, establishes his knowledge that [ISIS] committed acts calculated to influence or affect the conduct of government by intimidation and coercion, and it retaliated against government conduct," prosecutors wrote in a sentencing memo.

Pugh bought a one-way ticket from Cairo, Egypt to Istanbul, Turkey in January 2015. Around the same time, he drafted a letter to his Egyptian wife in which he called himself a "Mujahid" and said that he would "use the talents and skills given to me by Allah to establish and defend the Islamic State." "There are only 2 possible outcomes for me. Victory or Martyr," he added.

But he was denied entry in Istanbul and returned to Egypt where he was detained and eventually deported to the United States.

Pugh's "military service is admirable," prosecutors wrote, but "his decision to turn his back on his country to support a terrorist organization committed to the destruction of the United States and all it stands for represents a particularly stark betrayal in light of his prior military service and the training, support, and opportunities he received through his affiliation with the U.S. Air Force."

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By Abha Shankar  |  June 1, 2017 at 4:05 pm  |  Permalink

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