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Indian Press (04 Nov 2017 NewAgeIslam.Com)

After ISIS’ Fall In Syria-Iraq & ‘Lone Wolf’ Hits, Bigger Challenges Loom: New Age Islam’s Selection 04-11-2017

New Age Islam Edit Bureau

04 November 2017

On Rohingya crisis: Suu Kyi in denial

The Hindu

‘New York Attacker Was ‘Soldier’ Of Isis’

By Daily Pioneer

Compiled by New Age Islam Edit Bureau

URL: http://newageislam.com/indian-press/new-age-islam-edit-bureau/after-isis’-fall-in-syria-iraq---‘lone-wolf’-hits,-bigger-challenges-loom--new-age-islam’s-selection-04-11-2017/d/113119


After ISIS’ fall in Syria-Iraq & ‘lone wolf’ hits, bigger challenges loom

Talmiz Ahmad

Updated: Nov 4, 2017

Donald Trump has criticised the “politically correct” US immigration policies that had enabled Saipov to enter the country.

On Tuesday, as New Yorkers celebrated Halloween, a 29-year-old Uzbek, Sayfullo Saipov, drove his truck through revellers in Lower Manhattan, killing eight people — five Argentinians celebrating their graduation from technical college 20 years earlier, a Belgian woman and two Americans; and leaving a few dozen more injured.

After his truck hit a school bus, Saipov came out shouting “Allahu Akbar” (God is great, in Arabic) before he was shot by a policeman. He is now being treated in hospital. His truck had a note fixed to it saying: “Islamic supplication will endure forever”. This was the worst terrorist attack in New York City since the horror of 9/11 a decade and a half ago.

Saipov has confirmed that he acted on behalf of the Islamic State, and that he had responded to the call of its “caliph” to all Muslims to revenge the killing of their brethren during the US bombings on Mosul as the ISIS “capital” in Iraq was under military assault from Iraqi forces.

US President Donald Trump has criticised the “politically correct” US immigration policies that had enabled Saipov to enter the country, and the feeble judicial system that had failed to impose harsh deterrent punishments. According to Mr Trump, Saipov was an “animal” who deserved the death penalty or being sent to Guantanamo. New York governor Andrew Cuomo has said that Saipov was a “lone wolf” who had been “radicalised domestically” after reaching America, affirming that Saipov had not had any direct contact with a jihadi organisation.

Early investigations reveal that Saipov had been planning the attack for over a year, but seriously started doing dry runs with a truck over the last two months. He said he had deliberately chose Halloween for carrying out his attack as there would be large crowds in Lower Manhattan.

He was radicalised by exposure to ISIS propaganda material available on the social media. Investigators have found 90 ISIS videos in his possession, with 3,800 pictures of ISIS activities, including beheadings, killings of prisoners, bomb-making instructions, and other slick material produced by the organisation to attract recruits from diverse countries and backgrounds.

Saipov used the truck as his weapon of attack, following similar earlier attacks by ISIS adherents in France, Britain, Germany, Sweden, Spain and Canada. Saipov is said to have closely followed the manual from ISIS on the social media that describes the type of vehicle to rent and the type and timing of the attack to wreak maximum destruction.

In the November 2016 issue of its mouthpiece, Rumiyah, ISIS had said: “Though being an essential part of modern life, very few actually comprehend the deadly and destructive capability of the motor vehicle and its capacity of reaping large numbers of casualties if used in a pre-meditated manner.” Such vehicle-ramming attacks are particularly devastating since they are easy to carry out and it is almost impossible to pre-empt them.

The latest New York attack has revived the debate on the factors that radicalise Muslims and lead them to perpetrate violence. Given the fact that lone-wolf violence is a relatively recent phenomenon, both academics and counter-terrorism experts have made little progress in addressing these issues. Analysts have observed that the profiles of lone-wolf terrorists present a very unclear picture, indicating variously — confused sexuality, confused religious identity, possible mental illness, anger management issues and possibly a dysfunctional family life.

On several occasions, the perpetrators have indicated no clarity about jihadi ideology being their motive force. This leads to the tentative conclusion that the act of violence is just an opportunity for a socially ill-adjusted individual with violent tendencies to seek some meaning in his miserable life by associating himself with a dramatic act that would serve a larger historic purpose, far beyond his tawdry existence.

American security analyst Tom Mockaitis believes that lone-wolf attackers could have dysfunctional backgrounds along with personal grievances which lead them to “identify with an existing movement and act on its behalf”. ISIS is of course particularly adept at alluring such misfits to carry out acts of violence in its name.

But this understanding is of little use for law enforcement officers to prevent such lone-wolf attacks. As a European security officer said, a lone-wolf attack can come “in any size, any shape, and any ethnicity, as well as representing any ideology”.

There is similar uncertainty on the sources of radicalisation of lone-wolf terrorists. Observers have noted that the social media, “through bits and bytes of the digital age”, creates a community of “followers of a borderless loyalty”. Here, Jen Easterly and Joshua Geltzer make the important point that, whatever the influence of social media, the actual move from inspiration to action is that of the lone-wolf himself; it is he who selects the targets, the weapons, the timing and the mode of attack.

They believe that ISIS messages on the social media are particularly effective for people who are lonely: they are now made partners in a historic cause, an enterprise far bigger than anything they could on their own have been associated with. Thus, they note the social media in today’s digital media age has made the term “homegrown” obsolete.

But there is now a bigger challenge before us. ISIS expert Graeme Wood sees Saipov as a “complete idiot” since he had a fake gun and could easily have been taken down by a policeman. What he fears is that, with the fall of the ISIS in both Iraq and Syria, some of the ISIS’ battle-hardened fighters could return home and launch what he calls the “campaign of competent terror”, marked by careful planning and lethal weaponry, on the lines of the Batacalan attacks in Paris in November 2015, in which 90 people were killed, and the more recent (non-ISIS related) attack by Stephan Paddock in Las Vegas, where 58 persons were killed and over 600 others injured.

That is the dreadful prospect before the international community after the “defeat” of the Islamic State at US hands in Iraq and Syria.



On Rohingya crisis: Suu Kyi in denial

The Hindu

November 04, 2017 00:02 Ist

rly three months after violence escalated against the Rohingya in Myanmar’s Rakhine State, leading to the exodus of more than half a million to neighbouring Bangladesh, State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi finally visited the region. By all accounts, Ms. Suu Kyi had little more than platitudes to offer and her words showed no recognition that what transpired is a “textbook example of ethnic cleansing”, as the UN Human Rights chief put it. This is extremely disappointing. Ms. Suu Kyi endured years of house arrest and unremitting hostility from the military junta before emerging victorious in a free and fair election two years ago. But despite taking over a top post after the election, her civilian government’s powers have been clipped as the military still holds sway over defence, home affairs and border issues. Ms. Suu Kyi, a recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, has found it pragmatic not to challenge the official rhetoric in Myanmar, which suggests the military’s actions were aimed at tackling “terror” in Rakhine. This could be for two reasons. First, she does not want to upset the fragile balance of power in the fledgling democracy after years of rule by the junta. Second, there is a clear lack of empathy for the Rohingya in a country that has seen the rise of Buddhist and Bamar majoritarianism that has corresponded with an official “othering” of the Rohingya, who are Muslims, as non-citizens. Despite the widespread international condemnation of her government’s actions, Ms. Suu Kyi has sought to pander to the domestic gallery by defending the military’s actions in Rakhine. Her conduct during her visit to the region this week suggests that she has no intention of effecting any real or meaningful change in her government’s position on the Rohingya.

The Rohingya, meanwhile, have been left to deal with themselves, unwanted and stateless in their homeland and forced to migrate, mostly to Bangladesh, in hazardous conditions. Dhaka has been trying to drum up support and relief for the constant and unremitting stream of refugees making their way to Bangladeshi soil. Against this background, it is unfortunate that New Delhi has turned its back on the Rohingya refugees, leading to perceptions that it has failed to rise to its status as a regional power and take the lead in dealing with the humanitarian crisis. The Myanmar government has said that it will repatriate returning Rohingya if they prove they were residents of Rakhine, but it is not clear how the refugees would be able to do so having been denied citizenship and having fled their villages under duress with barely anything in hand. Myanmar’s evasiveness makes it all the more imperative that the international community, including India, quickly provide succour for the hundreds of thousands of Rohingya who are living on the edge.



‘New York Attacker Was ‘Soldier’ Of Isis’

By Daily Pioneer

Saturday, 04 November 2017 | AFP | Washington

The attacker who killed eight people in a truck rampage in New York was a “soldier” of the ISIS group, the jehadis said on Friday, according to a US-based monitoring group.

“One of the soldiers of the ISIS attacked a number of crusaders on a street in New York City,” said an article in the latest issue of the group’s al-Naba weekly newspaper, according to the SITE Intelligence Group.

Sayfullo Saipov, 29, an immigrant from Uzbekistan, is charged with terrorism offences after allegedly driving a rented pickup truck down a mile-long stretch of bike path in Manhattan. The charging document says he confessed to acting in the name of ISIS and “felt good about what he

had done,” even demanding to hang an ISIS flag in his hospital room.

Police said he appeared to have followed very closely “the instructions” that ISIS put out to its followers on social media.

He was allegedly in possession of three knives, thousands of ISIS propaganda images and dozens of videos that showed ISIS fighters killing prisoners.

The picture of Saipov that has emerged is of a suspect who only radicalised after moving to the United States in 2010.


URL: URL: http://newageislam.com/indian-press/new-age-islam-edit-bureau/after-isis’-fall-in-syria-iraq---‘lone-wolf’-hits,-bigger-challenges-loom--new-age-islam’s-selection-04-11-2017/d/113119


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