Among us: Officials confirm American ISIS fighters have returned to United States

posted at 1:21 pm on September 22, 2014 by Noah Rothman

America was comforted to learn in late July that an American-born fundamentalist who fought alongside Islamic militants inside Syria before executing a suicide attack on Bashar al-Assad’s troops in May had freely traveled from Syria to the United States.

“This incident exemplifies the challenges faced by the FBI in detecting US citizens who seek to travel to Syria to engage in jihad,” an FBI spokesman said of the benign infiltration of U.S.-born Moner Mohammad Abusalha. Apparently, that challenge has not yet been overcome by American defense officials.

On Monday, an Obama administration official confirmed that some American citizens who fought with ISIS in Iraq and Syria have come back to the United States.

“During a briefing for reporters Monday in the ornate Eisenhower Executive Office Building on the Administration’s efforts to address the issue of so-called foreign terrorist fighters, the official said that the latest assessment from National Counterterrorism Center is that more than 100 Americans have attempted to fight in Iraq and Syria alongside ISIS or the al-Qaeda affiliated al-Nusra Front,” Time Magazine’s Zeke Miller reported.

“It includes those who’ve gone, those who’ve tried to go, some who’ve come back and are under active—the FBI is looking at them,” the official said. “These are FBI matters, I refer you to them on specifics.”

It marked the first official government confirmation that at least some of the Americans fighting alongside the Islamist extremist group have returned to the U.S. As late as Monday morning, Secretary of State John Kerry said on MSNBC that “we have over 100 fighters there from America,” leaving out any mention of Americans who have returned.

That is not especially comforting.

First, the revelation that the FBI is conducting an ongoing investigation into suspected American jihadist fighters who have returned to the United States would seem to compromise that investigation. Second, based on the FBI’s inability to intercept Abusalha indicates that monitoring jihadists who return to the U.S. remains a significant challenge.

Yahoo News’ Olivier Knox reported on Monday that the administration has been focused on this threat posed by returning jihadists for some time, and the president chaired a special meeting of his national security team on September 17 specifically addressing this issue.

“With respect to the Americans who may be engaged in combat in Iraq and Syria, this is something that our national security agencies and counterterrorism team are taking very seriously,” National Security Advisor Susan Rice said Friday.

“It’s something we track closely. And we are doing obviously all that we can to both gather the necessary information and take the appropriate precautions to the greatest extent that we possibly can,” Rice said.

Asked whether 100 was a relatively low number that might signal success in keeping Americans off Syrian battlefields, the anonymous official replied: “I think that success is 0.”

American officials believe that there are up to 100 Americans who have traveled to Iraq and Syria to fight with Islamist militias. By some estimates, up to 2,000 Europeans are fighting in the Middle East.

On Monday, ISIS leaders called for attacks on the United States and France for executing airstrikes on Islamic State targets. “Do not ask for anyone’s advice and do not seek anyone’s verdict. Kill the disbeliever whether he is civilian or military, for they have the same ruling,” an ISIS spokesman reportedly said. “Both of them are disbelievers. Both of them are considered to be waging war.”

“Rig the roads with explosives for them,” he added. “Attack their bases. Raid their homes. Cut off their heads. Do not let them feel secure. Hunt them wherever they may be. Turn their worldly life into fear and fire. Remove their families from their homes and thereafter blow up their homes.”


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Comments

Surprise!

Star Bird on September 22, 2014 at 1:23 PM

Not shocking at all.

sorrowen on September 22, 2014 at 1:25 PM

I can’t help but notice the use of word “returned.”

listens2glenn on September 22, 2014 at 1:25 PM

Uncompleted, off-the-record quote from Team SCOAMT – “The reason we didn’t track these individuals more closely is because they aren’t espousing the ideas of small government.”

Steve Eggleston on September 22, 2014 at 1:26 PM

From Audacity of Hope: ‘I will stand with the Muslims should the political winds shift in an ugly direction’… Na… nothing to see here, move along… Not even a smidgen of corruption to be found anywhere in the Obamanation Administration.

oscarwilde on September 22, 2014 at 1:27 PM

There are also Afghan “soldiers” who were sent to the US to be part of a training exercise that have “disappeared” as well. The Regime says they aren’t dangerous.

Derka Derka, mohammed jihad.

ConstantineXI on September 22, 2014 at 1:28 PM

ISIS with boots on the ground here.

Bitter Clinger on September 22, 2014 at 1:28 PM

Uncompleted, off-the-record quote from Team SCOAMT – “The reason we didn’t track these individuals more closely is because they aren’t espousing the ideas of small government.”

Steve Eggleston on September 22, 2014 at 1:26 PM

Harddrives to crash and Blackberries to be scrubbed and shredded in 3…2…1…

oscarwilde on September 22, 2014 at 1:29 PM

Open Season?

Bmore on September 22, 2014 at 1:32 PM

And Gaia forbid that we should profile.

vnvet on September 22, 2014 at 1:32 PM

What’s the point of tracking them if they are allowed to remain free due to “diversity”?

PattyJ on September 22, 2014 at 1:35 PM

Open Season?

Bmore on September 22, 2014 at 1:32 PM


Followed up by…

oscarwilde on September 22, 2014 at 1:35 PM

Let’s hope someone with a concealed firearm is nearby when they try to attack an innocent American and behead them.

They deserve a bullet in the head from one of their fellow citizens.

Meople on September 22, 2014 at 1:40 PM

oscarwilde on September 22, 2014 at 1:35 PM

; ) Got my Spam already.

Bmore on September 22, 2014 at 1:43 PM

Do not let them feel secure. Hunt them wherever they may be. Turn their worldly life into fear and fire. Remove their families from their homes and thereafter blow up their homes.”

To be quickly followed by “See a Muslim, shoot a Muslim”.

[email protected] on September 22, 2014 at 1:45 PM

oscarwilde on September 22, 2014 at 1:35 PM

; ) Got my Spam already.

Bmore on September 22, 2014 at 1:43 PM

I heard a rumor that there was a very innocent looking and free pile of wood on the QOTD… Just sayin…. <— Insert evil grin here…

oscarwilde on September 22, 2014 at 1:46 PM

Why do I have the feeling that Obama and Valerie think this is a good thing?

albill on September 22, 2014 at 1:47 PM

Report: Obama Providing Indirect Military Aid To Hezbollah To Help Them Fight ISIS

Resist We Much on September 22, 2014 at 1:44 PM

Arming an enemy of America, yet another in the long list of laws Dog Eater has broken and should be rotting in Federal Prison for.

Meople on September 22, 2014 at 1:47 PM

Prediction: No incidents until after Obama opens the borders even wider. Indeed, they’re probably on orders to wait to see if the US is dumb enough to elect another amnesty shill as president. If we do, then the strikes and the chaos will begin.

BuckeyeSam on September 22, 2014 at 1:51 PM

Asked whether 100 was a relatively low number that might signal success in keeping Americans off Syrian battlefields, the anonymous official replied: “I think that success is 0.”

It took only 19 to kill 3000 Americans in the space of an hour-and-a-half on 9/11.

Bitter Clinger on September 22, 2014 at 1:57 PM

Report: Obama Providing Indirect Military Aid To Hezbollah To Help Them Fight ISIS

Resist We Much on September 22, 2014 at 1:44 PM

Arming an enemy of America, yet another in the long list of laws Dog Eater has broken and should be rotting in Federal Prison for.

Meople on September 22, 2014 at 1:47 PM

Congress would have to be less corrupt then Obama to do anything about it.

oscarwilde on September 22, 2014 at 1:58 PM

Let’s hope someone with a concealed firearm is nearby when they try to attack an innocent American and behead them.

They deserve a bullet in the head from one of their fellow citizens.

Meople on September 22, 2014 at 1:40 PM

And then let’s hope Eric Holder doesn’t prosecute that person for a hate crime.

CurtZHP on September 22, 2014 at 1:58 PM

Top Australian Anglican Leader Blames Islam For Rise Of ISIS, Hits Obama For Claiming Islam Has Nothing To Do With ISIS

Resist We Much on September 22, 2014 at 1:57 PM

’bout time someone grew a set.

CurtZHP on September 22, 2014 at 1:59 PM

So, please tell me why TSA needs to know if I have colon cancer again.

Why do I have the feeling that Obama and Valerie think this is a good thing?

albill on September 22, 2014 at 1:47 PM

Me too. I think they will us an terrorist attack to pass more laws that are hostile to conservatives.

Oil Can on September 22, 2014 at 2:00 PM

Multiculturalism following its logical course. Violent minorities can punch far above their numbers if they are ruthless enough. Initially within their own communities terrorizing those who don’t want trouble, those that agree but don’t want to act and those who just want to run the community. From there it spreads as immigration adds to their numbers.

Self inflicted wound. Remedies get harder the longer the problem is ignored.

richardb on September 22, 2014 at 2:02 PM

PC will kill all.

Schadenfreude on September 22, 2014 at 2:04 PM

Soooooooooooooo …. all of us who were screaming for closing the borders and enforcing passport control (that’s why we have them, eh?) were gasp right?

Lance Corvette on September 22, 2014 at 2:04 PM

Asked whether 100 was a relatively low number that might signal success in keeping Americans off Syrian battlefields,

I see our lapdog press is hard at work.

Bill-Republic of Texas on September 22, 2014 at 2:05 PM

There are also Afghan “soldiers” who were sent to the US to be part of a training exercise that have “disappeared” as well. The Regime says they aren’t dangerous.

Derka Derka, mohammed jihad.

ConstantineXI on September 22, 2014 at 1:28 PM

also this

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/afghan-cops-disappeared-training-dea-found-article-1.1945798

I don’t trust any of those soldiers or police officers from Afghanistan..too many of them are actually taliban insiders who want to do insider attacks on American troops..also they could be practicing
Taquia

sadsushi on September 22, 2014 at 2:06 PM

That is not especially comforting.

In a just world, every single one of them should be sought out with the highest priority; their passports cancelled and flagged; their families and friends all deported immediately without protest or recourse; and those who joined ISIS and are captured in the U.S. should face a firing squad, on the spot.

Jaibones on September 22, 2014 at 2:13 PM

They take their Koran very literally.

Sura 47:4: “When you meet the unbelievers, smite their necks.”

obama is a fool for them.

“ISIL is not Islamic.” — caliph obama

Schadenfreude on September 22, 2014 at 2:15 PM

They take their Koran very literally.

Sura 47:4: “When you meet the unbelievers, smite their necks.”

obama is a fool for them.

“ISIL is not Islamic.” — caliph obama

Schadenfreude on September 22, 2014 at 2:15 PM

They are only moderate and peaceful terrorists and beheaders, nothing to worry about.

ConstantineXI on September 22, 2014 at 2:25 PM

“It’s something we track closely.

Evidently not CLOSE enough.

GarandFan on September 22, 2014 at 2:25 PM

“Rig the roads with explosives for them,” he added. “Attack their bases. Raid their homes. Cut off their heads. Do not let them feel secure. Hunt them wherever they may be. Turn their worldly life into fear and fire. Remove their families from their homes and thereafter blow up their homes.”

This is the sort of statement that should send muslims who proclaim to be just like everyone else into apoplexy, and cause them to confer with one another and come out loudly, strongly, and convincingly that they do not condone this sort of stuff, and then tell us how they intend to join in neutralizing ISIS.

So far….crickets. What they are doing is lining up their lawyers in anticipation of a big payoff from the coming hate crime civil trials.

BobMbx on September 22, 2014 at 2:33 PM

“ISIL is not Islamic.” — caliph obama

Schadenfreude on September 22, 2014 at 2:15 PM

“The Knights Templar are not Christian”

BobMbx on September 22, 2014 at 2:36 PM

OP-ED:

September 22, 2014 9:30 AM
Obama and the Rise of ISIS

The president’s delays, retreats, and inaction have allowed the terrorist movement to metastasize.
By John McCain & Lindsey Graham
*******************************

The impact of this decision by the president cannot be overemphasized. Not only did it violate every moral obligation we have to prevent mass atrocities and punish the use of chemical weapons, but it also gave a green light to Assad to accelerate his sectarian war against the moderate opposition. Moreover, the president’s inaction destroyed U.S. credibility with our Arab partners in the region who had been prepared to support the U.S. mission, and it shook the confidence of America’s allies worldwide. From that moment on, many around the world had good reason to question whether America would live up to its word, a crisis of credibility that haunts us to this day.

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/388554/obama-and-rise-isis-john-mccain-lindsey-graham

canopfor on September 22, 2014 at 2:36 PM

Congress would have to be less corrupt then Obama to do anything about it.

oscarwilde on September 22, 2014 at 1:58 PM

Yep, so here again, nothing will be done about it.

And then let’s hope Eric Holder doesn’t prosecute that person for a hate crime.

CurtZHP on September 22, 2014 at 1:58 PM

Oh, you KNOW he would at least try to do that exact thing. The Mooslim in the White House would make sure of it.

Meople on September 22, 2014 at 2:48 PM

The country is in the best of hands or something…

workingclass artist on September 22, 2014 at 2:56 PM

By some estimates, up to 2,000 Europeans are fighting in the Middle East.

Sure 100 Americans may come home and they can legally purchase guns (or get some ‘off the street’) assuming the FBI can’t track them. However, when those Euro’s go home (and not caught) their passports get them three months in the US as “tourist” without visa screening etc. They may not be able to get a gun but they’ll bring their bomb-making skills. We may soon see a time of US jihad tourism – best keep your head on a swivel.

batter on September 22, 2014 at 2:56 PM

I got plenty of bullets for ISIS in the USA.

TX-96 on September 22, 2014 at 2:58 PM

“The Knights Templar are not Christian”

BobMbx on September 22, 2014 at 2:36 PM

I wonder when the first “church” of Obama opens up? It’s inevitable you know. They won’t be able to stop worshiping their cult leader once he’s out of office.

ConstantineXI on September 22, 2014 at 3:00 PM

“It includes those who’ve gone, those who’ve tried to go, some who’ve come back and are under active—the FBI is looking at them,” the official said.

Looking at them? Why aren’t they arresting them? Others have been arrested simply for trying to fly to Syria, yet these people have succeeded in getting there, joined up with ISIS, and have come back yet they aren’t getting arrested?

xblade on September 22, 2014 at 3:02 PM

I got plenty of bullets for ISIS in the USA.

TX-96 on September 22, 2014 at 2:58 PM

No turban is going to protect a follower of satan’s prophet from a .30-06 rifle in the hands of a Kentuckian.

ConstantineXI on September 22, 2014 at 3:02 PM

Damn!!! Looks like grandmas everywhere will have to begin taking their shoes off again.

WryTrvllr on September 22, 2014 at 3:04 PM

Three Afghan soldiers who vanished from Massachusetts military base are FOUND trying to cross into Canada

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2765536/Three-Afghan-soldiers-vanished-Massachusetts-military-base-FOUND-trying-cross-Canada.html#ixzz3E4cIfKX0
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

workingclass artist on September 22, 2014 at 3:13 PM

I wonder when the first “church” of Obama opens up? It’s inevitable you know. They won’t be able to stop worshiping their cult leader once he’s out of office.

ConstantineXI on September 22, 2014 at 3:00 PM

There is precedent, you know.

Gaius Baltar.

Gaius Baltar regularly uses a well-developed acting talent to spin yarns on virtually any subject when he feels the need. He possesses a dry, cynical sense of humour but is prone to bouts of neurosis. A charismatic genius and womanizer, he is initially portrayed as a self-serving opportunist, but becomes a braver and more caring character over the course of the series, expressing regret for having been “a profoundly selfish man.” Baltar is initially an atheist, but ultimately converts to the Cylons’ monotheistic religion. Baltar is described as “weak”, “arrogant” and “a coward” by Lee Adama while Caprica Six describes Baltar as “narcissistic, self-centred, reckless and vain.”

BobMbx on September 22, 2014 at 3:19 PM

WH Meets With Syrian American Who Openly Sympathizes With Al Nusra Front On Best Way To Arm Rebels…

Via IPT:

Fresh from congressional approval to arm and train Syrian rebel groups fighting the vicious Islamic State terrorist group, the White House met this week with Syrian American advocates to discuss how to proceed.

But one of the people consulted is on record defending and sympathizing with Syrian rebels tied to al-Qaida.

Mohamad Alla Ghanem, government relations director for the Syrian American Council, touted his White House visit on his Facebook page Thursday.

Last November, Ghanem wrote about a trip to Doha, where he got to meet Sheik Yusuf al-Qaradawi, a spiritual guide to the Muslim Brotherhood who has endorsed attacks against American troops in Iraq and suicide bombings against Israelis.

“I love this appreciated scholar very much,” Ghanem wrote, “even I adore his jurisprudence. I consider this a great honor. Now, I am over the moon.” Qaradawi has been banned from entering the United States and United Kingdom due to his support for terrorism.

But that’s not the only time Ghanem has praised jihadists.

In December 2012, Ghanem wrote a column in Washington Post in which he criticized the United States for classifying Jabhat Al Nusra as a terrorist organization. Sure, many Jabhat leaders are ideological on par with al-Qaida, he wrote, but not all of its members share that view. And the group “has achieved military successes and has delivered critical civilian aid.”

In a column published a week ago by The Hill, Ghanem noted a recent Islamic State attack that wiped out the leadership in the Syrian rebel group Ahrar al-Sham. It is perhaps “the most hardline Syrian rebel group,” and founded by al-Qaida leader Ayman al-Zawahiri’s personal representative in Syria, but it is an Islamic State rival nonetheless.

Keep reading…

Just lovely.

FLASHBACK: Egyptian Press Confirms Washington Infiltrated By Islamists

Resist We Much on September 22, 2014 at 3:21 PM

Well get ready for TSA to molest more young girls and elderly women and the NSA to record more of your phone calls.

VorDaj on September 22, 2014 at 3:24 PM

Of all the enemies to public liberty war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes; and armies, and debts, and taxes are the known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few. In war, too, the discretionary power of the Executive is extended; its influence in dealing out offices, honors, and emoluments is multiplied; and all the means of seducing the minds, are added to those of subduing the force, of the people. No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare. – James Madison

And the thing is, nothing this federal government of Imperial City DC is doing is actually to protect America anyway. It’s all lose – lose – no defense and no liberty – the worst of both worlds.

VorDaj on September 22, 2014 at 3:32 PM

After 9/11 the rational thing to do was:

1) -seal the borders.
2) -restrict immigration (including students, refugees, asylum seekers, et al) from the Muslim world.
3) -expose the core ideology of imperialistic Islam (Koran, Hadiths, etc.).
4) -defeat that ideology intellectually, and militarily.

Having failed on all 4 counts, everyone in our “leadership” has proved themselves to be useless in this War, from Bush to Barack, Boehner to Reid. Powell to Petraeus.

And this civilization-endangering failure continues.

(They might as well be headless for all the use they make of theirs.)

profitsbeard on September 22, 2014 at 3:57 PM

These too

Schadenfreude on September 22, 2014 at 3:58 PM

They may be here, they may attack, but they’re going to be surprised….

If the muzzies thought there would be a backlash against muslims after 9/11, they better be prepared for what comes after any isis attack. Then they better just start digging graves over there in the sand.

They’re gonna need a lot of them, and when we roast them, their final resting spots won’t only be facing east…it’d be too difficult to face a million bits of charcoal and ash in one direction.

Diluculo on September 22, 2014 at 3:59 PM

Quit worrying, rubes.

Schadenfreude on September 22, 2014 at 4:08 PM

It marked the first official government confirmation that at least some of the Americans fighting alongside the Islamist extremist group have returned to the U.S.

This “alongside” annoys me. It’s inaccurate and, as such, an attempt to downplay their treason. If you are fighting alongside ISIS you are a member of ISIS Individuals going there, and especially Americans, don’t get to pull the ‘I’m an independent contractor’ card with ISIS.

Dusty on September 22, 2014 at 4:12 PM

problem? yep. But not ISIS is not a threat to us in any stretch of the imagination.

ref. definition of insanity

Tlaloc on September 17, 2014 at 3:48 PM

Despite the freak out about 9/11 it was a pin prick. The only reason it was big deal was because people freaked out about it. The actual physical damage was negligible and it was an amazing success for AQ, the kind of thing that went better than they could have ever hoped and which they could never replicate.

Terrorism is not and never has been our big threat in the world. But you guys have to believe the world is a scary place so you’ve peed yourselves over it for over a decade now and you can’t stand that those of us who are adults aren’t afraid. Because to you fear is the central most important thing in life.

Just grow up. Yes you might die in a terrorist attack. The odds are about on par with dying to lightning. Do you constantly soil yourself over that too?

Tlaloc on September 17, 2014 at 10:15 PM

Winning a war is not about killing your opponent, it is about co-opting them.

Tlaloc on September 17, 2014 at 10:19 PM

Del Dolemonte on September 22, 2014 at 4:39 PM

We need to be more concerned about US Military veterans who return from Iraq or Afghanistan and then jump the White House fence to talk to Obama about a collapsing atmosphere and how he needs to do more about climate change.

Joseph OHenry on September 22, 2014 at 5:31 PM

Some are already being offered cabinet positions by Chairman Obama.

The Notorious G.O.P on September 22, 2014 at 6:18 PM

I miss Nappy. At least when Nappy was around she made sure these terrorists were pinging the system. Now, those in charge can’t even get them to do that.

Dusty on September 22, 2014 at 7:24 PM

“It’s something we track closely. And we are doing obviously all that we can to both gather the necessary information and take the appropriate precautions to the greatest extent that we possibly can,” Rice said.

So…. they’re profiling now? HAHAHAHAHA! What was I thinking?!?!?

ghostwalker1 on September 22, 2014 at 8:19 PM

And they haven’t been killed by black-ops strike teams…why, exactly?

Rogue US citizens returning from voluntarily joining a rouge group carrying out a laundry list of war crimes and activities harmful to every single US interest imaginable – and we let them walk around ALIVE?!?!

We have lost our last scrap of brains.

LawfulGood on September 22, 2014 at 10:31 PM