Snowballing ISIL threat has revived terrorism, endangers international order (Radical Islam: The LAST enemy of the Lord, Israel and the Righteous!
Special to WorldTribune.com
The military success of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in Iraq is a propaganda coup for the recruitment of western jihadists who could pose a domestic terror threat to countries including the United States and the EU.
An estimated 12,000 foreign fighters are already believed to be helping ISIL in Syria and Iraq. 3,000 of those are believed to be from Western nations including 100 from the U.S.
Mehdi Nemmouche, a suspect in Brussels Jewish museum shooting.
The recent release of an ISIL propaganda video featuring English speaking jihadists from Britain and Australia is aimed at boosting those numbers. The ISIL hashtag which averaged about 1000 hits before the Iraqi invasion, is now averaging 30,000 to 40,000 hits on some days.
It appears that the fears recently expressed by the leaders of the U.S., Germany, Britain and France about the export of terror from the Middle East to their own countries has a solid base. Even if ISIL, as expected is confronted effectively in Iraq and Syria, the phenomenon of Global Jihad, whose main opponents until now were Al Qaida and its affiliates and are now ISIL and its affiliates, will presumably continue to be strengthened by a new generation of jihadis. Their goal is to revive the international terror system.
It is inconceivable that thousands of young people from Western countries who are participating in the battles in Syria and Iraq will not return to their countries of origin and try to spread the militant jihadist Salafist indoctrination they have received. They stand to use their experience in terror attacks in Western cities. ISIL is aggressive, expansionist, and poses a real danger. It might be focusing most of its attention on Iraq for now, but its long term ambitions are much wider.
A link between ISIL and Europe emerged in June 2013 when the Iraqi defense Ministry announced that it had arrested members of a terror cell in Baghdad that had been attempting to manufacture chemical weapons into Canada,the U.S. and Europe.
In May 2014, Mehdi Nemmouche, a French citizen whom French intelligence agencies believe joined ISIL in Syria in 2012 shot and killed three people at the Jewish Museum in Brussels. His gun was found wrapped in an ISIL Flag. ISIL has managed to distinguish itself from other global jihadist movements that still support Al Qaida in the bitter conflict between al-Zawahiri and al-Baghdadi.
ISIL has given new meaning to the term extremism, and this ironically casts Al Qaida the ISIL former patron and current enemy, in a relatively pragmatic light. ISIL fighters have crossed red lines and raised the already high threshold of brutality formerly pitched by Al Qaida.
The thousands of young Muslims from all over the world, including Western citizens, who are present in war-torn areas in Syria and move between Syria and Iraq and participate in horrific acts are being indoctrinated and are acquiring battle experience and skills to be used against the West.
The question of how the West, the United States in particular, will respond awaits an answer.
Dr. Fariborz Saremi is a strategic analyst based in Hamburg/Germany and a contributor for Freepressers.com, World Tribune.com and Defense & Foreign Affairs.