Posted by DrJohn on 19 November, 2014 at 4:24 am. 4 comments already!


When jihadis come marching home

As many as 15,000 foreign volunteers have swelled the ranks of rebel and jihadist formations currently fighting in Syria, according to the most recent United Nations report. Most come from neighboring Arab countries, but more than 2,000 have arrived from a handful of European countries, with smaller numbers coming from Australia and North America.

Their presence in Syria and Iraq increases the available reservoir of Western passports and “clean skins” that terrorist planners could recruit to carry out terrorist missions against the West. And what happens when they return — more radicalized, more experienced, determined to continue their violent campaigns at home?

Thus far, homegrown terrorist plots in the United States have been remarkably amateurish, although at times still lethal. The existing pool of determined jihadists in America is very small and lacks training and experience, which fighting in Syria and Iraq would provide. Returning jihadi veterans would be more formidable adversaries. Still, the threat appears manageable using current U.S. laws and existing resources.

Concern that al Qaeda’s affiliates in Syria and the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) would inevitably employ their foreign fighters to launch terrorist operations against U.S. targets or in the United States was one of the principal reasons given for initiating American military action in Iraq and Syria. But the American bombing campaign now also gives a motive for ISIS to counterattack.

More at The Hill

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