A new monthly series to be posted the ninth of every month bringing you the best news in the world of Islamic terrorism. Some were big stories; some were barely covered in the mainstream media. Happy reading.
THE FRONT PAGE
Well, the Christmas season has passed and there were no major attacks in the United States. That does not mean that Islamic radicals- and some countries- did not perpetrate violence against Christians or Christianity. In fact, three Muslim countries passed outright bans on the celebration- Brunei, Sudan and Somalia. It was declared that such celebrations are contrary to Islam tradition. Well...duh! In Sudan, "redevelopment" is used as a pretext to destroy churches. In Bangladesh, Muslim extremists so threatened Christians that many simply cancelled midnight masses over security concerns. At least 36 Christian ministers and Catholic priests have received death threats over the past two months. And in Israel, the Latin patriarch of Jerusalem had his car pelted with rocks by Palestinian protesters as he made his way to Bethlehem. Note: The patriarch has in the past been highly critical of Israeli policies and very accommodating towards Islam.
Meanwhile back here in the US, an Iranian-born professor in California led a campus protest against anti-Muslim rhetoric by wearing yellow Jewish star badges. Clearly, a bad wardrobe choice. The professor defended her actions by saying she was not trying to draw any analogies to the Holocaust...
What could be wrong with this picture? During the holiday season, Middle Eastern men purchased over 60 cell phones one night from a local Wal-Mart in a rural area of Missouri. Cell phones are a handy tool of your average terrorist and even more frightening is the fact that although a report was made, initially there was a fear over accusations of racial profiling.
Meanwhile in Arizona, an Arabic woman was detained for drawing pictures of a border crossing area in Nogales. Her sketchbook, once turned over, had drawings of the vehicle inspection area and the location of surveillance cameras in the pedestrian crossing area. Yeah...nothing suspicious there. This comes on the heels of the stop of five Middle Eastern men in Amado, Arizona, two of which were carrying suspicious steel cylinders. Although DHS is denying the incident, local law enforcement stated that the two men were taken into custody by the FBI.
A Rochester, NY pizza parlor owner originally from Yemen was arrested and pleaded guilty to trying to recruit people to join the efforts of ISIS. Again, there is nothing suspicious about 3 Twitter and 23 Facebook accounts. He actually made payments for guns, obtained a birth certificate for another and bought a laptop for another would-be jihadi. This did not include the planned machete attack in that city of New Year's by a Muslim. Rochester, NY- an apparent hotbed of Muslim jihadists. A 19-year-old Harrisburg, PA resident (Geez...that is almost Amish country) was arrested and charged with being an ISIS recruiter. One supposes that teenage hormones and talk of 72 virgins was just too much for this youth.
And in a move largely kept under wraps, officials arrested people suspected of trying to aid ISIS in Sacramento, Houston and Milwaukee. The person arrested in Houston was a resettled Iraqi refugee. So much for that intense vetting process.
Southern and Southeast Asia
Police in Indonesia- one of the most populated Muslim countries- arrested six people suspected of planning a terrorist attack in that country. Believed to be ISIS members and sympathizers, jihad manuals and explosives were discovered based on intelligence provided by Australia and the FBI.
In the southern Philippines, Islamic terrorists tied to the group Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Front (or, BIFF) killed at least seven Christian villagers in a pre-Christmas attack. Philippine military forces intend to lead a counter-attack but are sure this was a Christmas message to Christians in the area. Incidentally, BIFF is an offshoot of another Islamic group- the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, or MILF. So...BIFF left MILF.
The Taliban is resurgent in Afghanistan as suicide and car bomb attacks attest. A January 2nd bomb blast at a popular Kabul restaurant killed a child and left 15 injured.
Israel and the Middle East
Seems that Palestinian terrorists do not like Israel taking out their leaders. A Israeli strike against terrorist Samir Kumtar in the suburbs of Beirut prompted a weak rocket attack from Hezbollah forces against northern Israeli towns.
Then there are the continuing knife attacks on Israelis and non-Muslims in Israel. One attack killed two Christmas pilgrims to the Holy Land including an Argentinian rabbi. Perhaps what Israel needs is not gun control, but coordinated "commonsense" knife control. Meanwhile, Islamic terrorists fired on an Israeli tour bus near the pyramids outside Cairo. The kicker: the bus was carrying Arab tourists.
They probably just needed some heat "on a cold winter's night," but police arrested two Islamic radicals in the mainly Christian town of Zababdeh in the West Bank for setting fire to that town's Christmas tree. This came after the arrest of other Islamic radicals in Bethlehem. Israel also broke up a major Hamas terror cell and seized chemicals and explosives used in suicide vests. The leader of this cell- Ahmad Jamal Mousa Azzam- was trained in an Israeli university.
Turkish officials broke up a planned terrorist attack in Ankara after explosives with ball bearings were discovered in an apartment of the terrorists along with ISIS propaganda. Meanwhile, the Saudis executed a Shiite cleric prompting an attack in Tehran on the Saudi embassy. No doubt a video was the root cause of the attack, not the execution itself. Saudi Arabia responded by breaking off diplomatic relations with Iran. Iran versus Saudi Arabia- the new Cold War.
And while there was backslapping regarding the Iraqis retaking Ramadi from ISIS in Iraq, a coordinated suicide attack involving ten trucks packed with explosives took out at least seven Iraqi soldiers in the outskirts of that city. It was also reported that despite the overwhelming manpower force of the Iraqi army in Ramadi, ISIS still holds about 25% of the city and is a danger in the surrounding areas.
Our good friends in Boko Haram best known for kidnapping members of all-girl schools, raping villagers and mowing down fishermen when they're not torching their villages and hacking people to death with machetes, led a Christmas day attack on a village that left 14 dead. In a truly bizarre twist (and I am not making this up), the terrorists escaped on bicycles. Not to be outdone, they followed this up with more raids on villages the day after Christmas leaving another 50 dead and 114 wounded.
And in Libya- that shining example of the Obama/Clinton foreign policy- a suspected ISIS truck bomb near a police base managed to kill 60 people and injure more than 200.
In Italy, two Muslims were arrested after they tried to disarm soldiers guarding the Santa Maria Maggiore cathedral as they shouted "Allah is great." After being arrested the Palestinian and Tunisian continued to threaten police before being transported to an expulsion center where it was learned there were several previous expulsion orders pending against them.
In Sweden, amid reports of increased Muslim violence, sales of guns are up an astounding amount. There are now almost 2 million firearms in the hands of the Swedish population. Also, there is increased interest in home alarm systems as several local Swedish vigilante groups have popped up. The reason is simple: they expect an influx of 190,000 Muslim immigrants into the country in the upcoming year, roughly 2% of their entire population. Given the fact that Swedish police will not even enter many areas in response to calls, is it any wonder? Staying in Sweden, two migrants from Morocco were arrested for the strangulation death of a homosexual. The perpetrators were 16 and 19-years old and affixed a snake around the victim's neck. Could just be a silly teenage prank, or it could be a message since Islam is so tolerant of homosexuality?
British government officials are telling members of Parliament to tone down their rhetoric against Islamic terrorism. The reason? It could create a backlash against the government's outreach efforts with the Islamic community. While the British government fears Islamic backlash, a real Islamic terrorist- the master mind behind the Paris attack- had pictures of Birmingham's famed Bullring shopping mall on his cell phone stoking fears that this site could have been (or still is) a terrorist target. In Russia, the secret police arrested a local imam on suspicion of terrorism. Those suspicions were confirmed when a search of his residence turned up weapons and explosives.
It is good to know that in France- site of two of the worst terrorist attacks in Europe in 2015- Burger King will now offer halal-certified chicken and beef to appease some of the recent Muslim immigrants to France. This comes on the heels of Burger King's purchase of Quick- a fast food French operation. They will now compete with McDonald's for the 5 million strong Muslim community in France. Police in Toulouse arrested two men for plotting an attack on the local military and police barracks at the direction of fellow Frenchmen fighting in Syria.
A member of ISIS who fled the group has a warning. The unidentified 27-year-old was arrested by Turkey and turned over to German authorities. He then fled Germany and went to Syria where he joined ISIS, but has since had second thoughts. Guess living in the stone age lost its appeal. Any way, he claims that ISIS is intent on a major attack on Europe across a wide path and simultaneously. Four Christians were beaten by Muslims in Berlin's Postdamer Plaza after leaving midnight mass on Christmas Eve. We know the attackers were Muslim because they shouted, "I'm Muslim! What are you?" Then there is the report out of Cologne of a rape spree (there were 60 complaints filed) at the hands of "Middle Eastern men." The mayor of Cologne suggested that if the women had dressed differently... This story is starting to get some attention...two weeks after the fact.
Bosnian officials believed they broke up a major terrorist act with the arrest of eight people planning an attack designed to take out at least 100 people with explosives during a New Year's celebration in Sarajevo. Lawyers for those arrested said the explosives and the black ISIS flag on their wall were "farces" and that "they were merely practicing their religion." Belgian officials also broke up an alleged plot to carry out a terrorist attack targeting symbolic sites in Brussels over the Christmas/New Year's holiday and then cancelled celebrations over security concerns.
AND IN CONCLUSION
It would appear, if reports are correct, the intelligence community and Pentagon are investigating and mapping several locations in Iraq, Syria and Libya where ISIS produces their recruiting propaganda. Most of these locations are heavily populated areas and Obama's fear of civilian casualties is keeping US forces from doing anything. Instead, the administration is urging the intelligence community to "study" these locations and methods so that we have a greater understanding. The problem is widespread as their chief propaganda publication- Dabiq- is now available in several languages such as English, Russian, French, Turk and Arabic.
While Hillary Clinton wrongfully accuses Donald Trump of being a recruiter for ISIS, there is this little tidbit unnoticed by the press. Secretary of State John Kerry has assured Iranian officials that recent Congressional efforts to tighten loopholes in the visa waiver program would result in a presidential veto. The Iranians have said that if Congress does act, it would seriously put in doubt implementation of the nuclear deal. It would appear Obama's signature foreign policy legacy takes priority over keeping nefarious characters out of the country.
And as expected, after Clinton's false accusation against Trump, the Donald did appear in a recruitment video. Unfortunately for Hillary, so did she.