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A notorious al Qaeda magazine is encouraging lone-wolf terrorist attacks on U.S. economic leaders, including Bill Gates, Michael Bloomberg and Warren Buffett.
The list in Inspire magazine also included industrialist brothers Charles and David Koch, internet entrepreneur Larry Ellison, and casino magnate Sheldon Adelson. A prominent economist was also on the list but asked that his name be withheld. Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke was named, though not Janet Yellen, who succeeded him.
Also pictured was Jim Walton, one of the heirs to the Wal-Mart fortune, although he was misidentified in the caption as his late father, Sam Walton.
Tag Archives | Terrorism
One imagines that business is thriving, even sans Muslim customers. Via Talking Points Memo:
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I’m going to try to scoot you guys across the finish line before you suck a bullet,” barks Larry Vickers, addressing his men with disdain. He was once among elite U.S. Army warriors, but today his troop is a ragtag assortment of two dozen male gun enthusiasts, predominantly white and beefy, on a sandy gun range in a rural South New Jersey abyss between Philadelphia and Atlantic City.
The men sport earmuffs and digital camouflage cargo shorts bought on clearance, and their beer bellies hang over gun belts stocked with pistols and extra clips. Lunch was at a diner where every overstuffed sandwich came with a side of soup—plus somebody’s wife made brownies. Yet they soldier through the cheeseburger-and-chicken-noodle fatigue.
Many assume Enlightenment values will triumph over violence and prejudice. But in the wake of ISIS and Charlie Hebdo, victory seems less inevitable and the age of reason less secure. Might history not be on our side after all? Do we need more passion to combat zealotry’s allure or will reason alone win in the end?
Philospher and theologian Christopher Hamilton, author of Contesting the Saudi State and visiting professor at LSE Madawi al-Rasheed, and editor of Spiked Online Brendan O’Neill push reason to the extreme.
The situation in the Islamic world is very grave. I can tell you that when the situation with ISIS is over, we will see the rise of a very militant regime in Iraq. There are different paramilitary factions within Iraq battling ISIS, each of them following the belief that the word of their religious leader is holy, all power is vested in him and he makes law. When this militant state is erected in Iraq after the defeat of ISIS, it is probable that Iraq shall join a union with other Islamic nations, a sort of Islamic Soviet Union.
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Yesterday I witnessed the extraordinary sight of hordes of suicide bombers, dressed in black and brandishing Kalashnikovs, marching through the slums of Baghdad.
Grouped into makeshift platoons – some wearing white shrouds to denote their readiness to die – they demonstrated their deadly skills in an astonishing display by ‘detonating’ the bombs they carried.
On Wednesday, a man approached a couple talking on a patio, a man and a woman. It became apparent that the two were News reporters. How they spoke, the put-together clothes, and makeup , gave it all away. We see the scene in the first person, as if we’re watching Half-life or Call of Duty. This sense is increased when the point of view pulls a guns and fires repeatedly into the bodies of three reporters.
So runs Bryce Williams’ video footage that was discovered on social media minutes after the shooting. Traumatic real world violence, performed for the camera both on live TV and social media. We discovered his account moments before CNN did, so I didn’t know what I would find when I clicked it.
When I saw it, for a moment, I couldn’t believe it was real. This is a common reaction even in the midst of real violence — somehow the surreal cuts in.… Read the rest
For example, in January 2015 self-proclaimed Anonymous spokesman Barrett Brown was sentenced to 63 months in prison for hacking-related activities including linking to leaked material online. Edward Snowden is currently exiled in Russia after leaking the global surveillance operations of the NSA and GCHQ.
Prosecutions of hacktivists intensified in 2013, when Andrew “weev” Auernheimer was sentenced to 41 months after exposing a vulnerability that affected 114,000 iPad users on AT&T’s service. Jeremy Hammond was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison after hacking and releasing documents about military subcontractor Stratfor. Aaron Swartz, who was facing a prison sentence of 25 years after hacking into JSTOR – a database of academic articles – committed suicide in January of that year.… Read the rest
Back in September of 2014, Newsweek ran this article: The West’s Greatest Threat is the ‘Lone Wolf’ Terrorist, Say Security Experts. The article mentions that, “Jean-Pierre Filiu, professor of Middle East studies at Paris School of International Affairs…is sceptical about the term ‘lone wolf’ in its purest sense, because only very rare cases – like Norway’s Anders Breivik – involve no outside help at all, but he says the threat from IS figures is becoming big.”
The term “outside help” is left undefined.
Last week, I came across this article: GOP senator warns of threat of ‘imminent’ terror plots. “…Sen. James Risch, R-Idaho, said he has no doubt a lone wolf attack will eventually be successful in the U.S. The terror threat environment has shifted from terrorist groups focusing on complex terror plots like the 9/11 attacks to smaller-scale attacks carried out by lone wolves who may have been inspired by groups like ISIS.” It basically says that since individual (and presumably Isis-inspired Muslim) terrorists don’t coordinate with anyone else, they are simply harder to anticipate, and capable of “slipping through the cracks” in security.… Read the rest
Some claim false flag event for whatever fever pitched purpose that fits snugly into whatever conspiracy “theory” flavor of the day/week/month/year. I won’t even go there, from my perspective that line of thinking for these events is a distraction and like a mental pacifier for people who do not want to admit that the universe is rudderless. I hate to burst bubbles, but random bad stuff does indeed happen sometimes. Others blame mental health, but in reality those with mental health issues are more likely to be a victim.
Often it’s the police doing the victimizing, but that is a whole other article. Many blame guns in some sort of odd anthropomorphizing mental gymnastics. There may be some truth that, but where there’s a will there’s a way. Perhaps we should be talking about anti-government groups/right-wing extremists and their online revisionist propaganda. The recent spree killer did claim he got his inspiration from online racist indoctrination.… Read the rest
Mia Bloom and John Horgan write at Foreign Affairs:
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On January 15, a video surfaced on the Internet that depicted a 10-year-old Kazakh boy using a gun to execute two Russian members of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) who had been accused of being spies. ISIS claimed ownership of the video, although it has not yet been authenticated. Only a few days earlier, twin suicide bombings rocked northern Nigeria, involving three girls, who appeared to have been only 10 years old, all wearing explosives that may have been remotely detonated by members of Boko Haram. A year before, a nine-year-old girl named Spozhmai, who is the sibling of an Afghan Taliban commander, was detained at a border checkpoint in Kandahar. Rather than go through with her mission, she confessed to the authorities that she had been forced to wear a suicide belt.
The exploitation of children by terrorist groups is not new, but groups such as ISIS, Boko Haram, and the Pakistani Taliban are increasingly using children to carry out their activities.
Islamic State is definitely the FBI’s new bogeyman. USA Today reports on Director James Comey’s comments:
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In a dramatic assessment of the domestic threat posed by the Islamic State, FBI Director James Comey said Thursday there are “hundreds, maybe thousands” of people across the country who are receiving recruitment overtures from the terrorist group or directives to attack the U.S.
Comey said the Islamic State, also known as ISIL, is leveraging social media in unprecedented ways through Twitter and other platforms, directing messages to the smartphones of “disturbed people” who could be pushed to launch assaults on U.S. targets.
“It’s like the devil sitting on their shoulders, saying ‘kill, kill, kill,”’ Comey said in a meeting with reporters.
The FBI director’s comments come in the midst of a federal investigation into a foiled attack in Garland, Texas, involving two ISIL sympathizers, one of whom, Elton Simpson, was long known to federal authorities.