Jihadists returning to UK have skills and connections to be ‘very dangerous’, says MI6 chief
Speaking to journalists at the annual Munich security conference, Mr Younger said that returning Isis members could be very dangerous.
Alex Younger also warns that ‘military defeat of the caliphate does not represent the end of the terrorist threat that we face’
Certainly not. Every Mohammedan carries the jihad ideology in his mental baggage.
Should we forgive ISIS wives like Hoda Muthana and Shamima Begum?
Schoolgirl Bride brood sow of ISIS. You gave up your right to call this country your home when you went to join the enemy… and many true Brits sacrificed their sons & daughters to fight against. Stay in your refugee camp and own your choices.
Paul Maley The Australian February 22, 2019
At what point did Hoda Muthana realise she had been brainwashed? The 24-year-old American, who after leaving her home in Alabama four years ago has been a paid-up member of Islamic State, was one of several western women located this week by journalists in refugee camps on the fringes of Syria.
“I interpreted everything wrong,” Muthana said. “I’m a normal human being who has been manipulated.”
Muthana told America’s ABC News that she had been “brainwashed’’ by Islamic State, although it is not clear when she came to this realisation. Was it as she was walking past the putrefying heads impaled on the fence around Raqqa’s Naem traffic circle? Was it when her husband, Australian fighter, Suhan Abdul Rahman, was killed in battle? Perhaps the mass rape of Yazidi women arouses some latent feminist sympathy. Or maybe it was after she fired off this Tweet back in 2015
“Americans wake up. Men and women altogether. You have much to do while you live under our greatest enemy, enough of your sleeping! Go on drive-bys and spill all of their blood, or rent a big truck and drive all over them. Veterans, Patriot, Memorial etc Day parades … go on drive by’s + spill all of their blood or rent a big truck n drive all over them. Kill them.”
Either way, Muthana would like the state she once pledged to destroy to take her back. “I hope America doesn’t think I am a threat to them and I hope they accept me,” she said. “I hope they excuse me because of how young and ignorant I was.”
That’s unlikely. Not long after Muthana’s plight came to light, Donald Trump fired off a Tweet of his own.
“I have instructed Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and he fully agrees, not to allow Hoda Muthana back into the Country!’
Muthana’s case is wearingly familiar. Islamic State is brimming with idiot Westerners whose commitment to the cause turned to water the moment the bullets start to fly, the bombs start of explode or the drones started circling overhead. Or it was. After years of grinding conflict, most of those idiots are now dead. ASIO believes most of the 100 Australians who joined Islamic State and who remain unaccounted for are among them.
The so-called “cloudburst’’ effect authorities feared once ISIS was defeated, whereby thousands of tooled-up foreign fighters returned to their homes to wreak untold havoc, never materialised.
Instead of creating a new generation of jihadists Syria’s civil war seems to have eliminated an existing one. It is difficult to have sympathy for those that remain.
What has happened instead it that the thousands of women and children, the wives and offspring of these dead fighters, are now pouring from the conflict zone. Many were born in Syria and will lay claim to foreign citizenship, including Australian.
Their imminent return is creating a unique dilemma for governments and publics around the world. We must decide what to do with them and who must do it.
At around the same time Hoda Muthana was asking her countrymen to overlook her earlier attempts at murdering them, another Western woman, Shamima Begum was also pleading her case.
“I actually do support some British values and I am willing to go back to the UK and settle back again and rehabilitate and that stuff,” she said.
Begum’s case has attracted zero sympathy from British authorities. Home Secretary Sajid Javid has cancelled her citizenship, making her the responsibility of Bangladesh, the country of her birth, although the Bangladeshis have indicated they won’t be taking her either.
That seems harsh.
Begum’s case is quite different from Muthana’s. Begum was just 15-years-old when she abandoned life in Bethnal Green and travelled, along with two of her schoolmates, to Syria. Now 19, she has given birth to three children, two of whom died. To put a 15-year-old in the same category as a grown adult is neither fair nor humane.
If we accept that Islamic State propagandists “groomed’’ teenagers to become terrorists, which it did, it follows targets of that process are in part victims themselves.
In 2017 ASIO estimated that around 70 children had been sired by Australian jihadist in Syria and Iraq. Last year The Australian reported the first of these, a young woman and her child, returned secretly to Australia.
As the last vestiges of the Caliphate crumbles, expect more. Having spent years cloistered among the most radicalised zealots on the planet, these people will struggle to shed their views, as reportedly Begum has. As Anthony Loyd, the Times journalist who discovered the schoolgirl wrote, “To expend anger over her point of view is a waste of energy. To expect different is naive.’’
1/ Hoda Muthana, left, wants to return to the US and Shamima Begum, right, has begged to return to her family in London.