YNet“On Twitter, they get more reach to expand their propaganda. They can reach the ‘swing people,’ and try to attract more sympathizers,” said Murad Batal al-Shishani, a London-based researcher of jihadists who’s closely monitored their Twitter feeds for months. He’s written on the subject for the BBC and other media.“They’re focusing on current events ~ Syria, or supporting a revolution here or there ~ but they are not using it for operational activity or to communicate among themselves.” ~ Shaw’s Blog
May 7, 2013
European authorities see a double danger, one that's summed up by Somers who describes the youths as "cannon fodder" in Syria ~ and potential "full-blown terrorists" if they make it back home alive.But it all raises a conundrum: In a free society, how can you prevent these young people from packing up and leaving?
"We do not want people to go, especially the young men," said Abu Yamen, a Syrian who runs the El Rass pharmacy in Schaarbeek.
ED Noor: As in North America and elsewhere, the CIA/Mossad uses the same old platforms to disillusioned young Muslims
Insurgencies in Iraq and Libya also attracted foreign fighters. What is different in Syria is the extent to which fears are rising of the rebellion being hijacked by radical Islamist elements under the thumb of al-Qaeda.
ED Noor: This “jihad” was called by some of the Salafist and Wahhabi Imans of Saudi Arabia, a key player in this planned destruction of Syria. These ca;;s inspired many thousands of displaced young men to join forces against “the Great Satan”, never realizing that they are no more than cannon fodder.
ED Noor: This is what these young men are so eager to do in the name of "jihad", possibly one of the most misunderstood words on the planet. Those are not dolls, people!
The EU's law enforcement agency, Europol, said in the EU Terrorism Situation and Trend Report it published last Friday that returning fighters "have the potential to utilize their training, combat experience, knowledge and contacts for terrorist activities inside the EU."
The International Centre for the Study of Radicalization, an international group of five major academic institutions, estimates that up to 590 Europeans have left, accounting for about 10 percent of the foreign fighter total in Syria. Europol said Friday that in 2012,ED Noor: That makes things sound like a holiday destination does it not?
"Syria emerged as a destination of choice for foreign fighters."
This month's bombings at the Boston Marathon reinforced Europe's fears about youths leaving the West to be radicalized overseas, and coming back to carry out attacks. US authorities are investigating whether one of the suspects, ethnic Chechen Tamerlan Tsarnaev, was influenced by religious extremists when he spent six months in Russia's Caucasus in 2012.
"We are talking about views that these youngsters hold, and you cannot change opinions with a repressive approach," said Jos Vander Velpen, the chairman of the Belgian League of Human Rights. "To the contrary, they will become even more convinced, and win more status because of it."
Belgian police target Islamist volunteers for Syria
Islamization of Europe a good thing'
Germany bans 3 Islamic groups as anti-democratic