World View: The Iraqi Catastrophe Worsens as European Youth Join ISIS

World View: The Iraqi Catastrophe Worsens as European Youth Join ISIS

This morning’s key headlines from

  • The Iraqi catastrophe worsens as European youth join ISIS
  • ISIS conducts sophisticated media campaign to attract European youth
  • Russia may revoke its March 1 resolution authorizing Ukraine invasion
  • Boko Haram in Nigeria abducts 60 more girls and 30 boys

The Iraqi catastrophe worsens as European youth join ISIS

European authorities are becoming increasingly concerned about thenumbers of European youth who are going to Syria to join the IslamicState of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and the jihad against the regimes inSyria and Iraq. Media interviews with some of these young jihadistsindicate an enormous level of ignorance: 

I’m from the south of England. I grew up in a middleclass family. Life was easy back home. I had a life. I had acar. But the thing is: You cannot practice Islam back home. We seeall around us evil. We see pedophiles. We see homosexuality. Wesee crime. We see rape.

There are hundreds and, more likely, thousands of young men who havegone to fight with ISIS, as are would-be jihadists from around theworld, from America to Indonesia to Pakistan to Africa to Russia.

According to a Lebanese analyst, the Western media are ignoring thedanger posed by ISIS by vastly underestimating its power andaccomplishments and even sometimes portraying it as a benign people’srevolution of tribal youths. 

ISIS was formed only a little over a year ago in Syria, and it’srepeatedly fought off and beaten not only attacks by Syria’s army, butalso other Sunni militant groups such as Jabhat al-Nusra. Despitehaving to fight battles on several fronts, in the last few weeks it’saccomplish an extremely complex and sophisticated victory in Iraq,taking control of an Iraqi land area that is bigger than several Arabcountries combined, and is threatening Saudi Arabia and Jordan. ISIShas taken control of many of the border crossings between Iraq andSyria, effectively erasing the border between the two countries. 

The Western media have also given an unlikely impression of the sizeof ISIS, sometimes describing it as having only a few hundred or a fewthousand fighters. In fact, the old Al-Qaeda in Iraq, led by AbuMusab al-Zarqawi, had at least 15,000 fighters, and possibly manytimes more. ISIS is likely to have all those fighters available, andthose are buttressed by foreign jihadists coming from around theworld. 

None of this should be any surprise to long-time readers ofGenerational Dynamics World View, as we’ve been describing theincreasing strength of the jihadist movement in Syria for well over ayear. It’s also worth taking a moment to repeat the main factors thathave made this possible: 

  • The “industrial strength” torture and extermination of Sunni civilians by Syria’s president Bashar al-Assad, even reportedly using sarin gas and other chemical weapons with impunity.
  • The support by Russia’s president Vladimir Putin, who is a war criminal for providing unlimited supplies of heavy weapons to al-Assad to continue his genocide.
  • The disastrous and incompetent foreign policy of President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry, which has caused one debacle after another. The most disastrous event was Obama’s flip-flop on the chemical weapons “red line” in Syria, which convinced jihadists around the world that America is no longer strong or credible.

CNN and Al Monitor

ISIS conducts sophisticated media campaign to attract European youth

In the last few months, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) haslaunched a sophisticated Al-Hayat Media (“Life is belief and jihad”)and a media campaign in English, German, French, and other languages,targeting Western audiences. The character and quality of theproductions suggest that the staff is experienced in producing mediamaterials for Western audiences. Apparently, one of the main figuresactive in the new media branch is German rapper-turned-jihad-fighterAbu Talha Al Almani (aka Deso Dogg), who was wounded twice in thefighting in Syria. Al-Hayat’s Twitter account was shut down becauseof its offensive material, but Al-Hayat’s videos and materialsare also distributed in other ways. 

One British youth who goes by the name Abu Abdullah Al Brittani gives online advice to underage British youth on how to exchangecurrencies, how to travel to Syria and join ISIS, and even givesadvice on marriage and family. MEMRI and Daily Mail (London)

Russia may revoke its March 1 resolution authorizing Ukraine invasion

Russia’s president Vladimir Putin has asked Russia’s FederationCouncil to cancel the resolution, passed on March 1, that authorizedan invasion of Ukraine by Russia’s armed forces. Putin’s call is aresponse to the unilateral ceasefire called by Ukraine’s PresidentPetro Poroshenko. A decision will be reached today (Wednesday).Voice of Russia

Boko Haram in Nigeria abducts 60 more girls and 30 boys

The Nigerian terrorist group Boko Haram has abducted60 more girls and young women, some as young as three-years old. In addition, some30 boys were abducted. The abduction took place during a three-daysiege of a village in northeast Nigeria, during which many people werekilled, the entire village was burned down, and Boko Haram took their time picking out the girls that they wanted toabduct. These new kidnappings come over two months after 200-300schoolgirls were abducted. 

The Nigerian army and government is viewedas helpless against the crimes of Boko Haram. However, Boko Haram hasindicated that it may be willing to release 219 schoolgirls in returnfor the release of all Boko Haram militants currently in Nigerianjails. The government has rejected such suggestions in the past butis now said to be considering it. AFP and AP

KEYS: Generational Dynamics, Iraq, Europe, Syria, Jabhat al-Nusra,Islamic Emirate in Iraq and Syria/Sham/the Levant, ISIS, ISIL,Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, Al-Qaeda in Iraq,Bashar al-Assad, Russia, Vladimir Putin, Al-Hayat Media,Abu Talha Al Almani, Deso Dogg, Abu Abdullah Al Brittani,Ukraine, Petr Poroshenko, Nigeria, Boko Haram 

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