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Old 03-22-2015   #81
WarPorcus
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Originally Posted by Bill Moore View Post
WarPorcus,

I'm not sure what statistics you're looking for, but I'll do a search through my computer tomorrow and see what I have for foreign fighter flow from Southeast Asia. A few reports point to several foreign fighters being disillusioned by ISIL's extreme behavior, so hopefully that trend continues. As for Indonesia and the Philippines (similar but still very different), JI and ASG's initial core were foreign fighters from Afghanistan during the USSR occupation. The vast majority of fighters returning that conflict didn't engage in terrorism, but it only takes a handful to have a strategic impact.

We can't compare this to the Crusades where Christians go out and fight and return to their Christian homes, nations that were already somewhat extremist on the Christian side. Fighters today are returning to countries that don't embrace their extreme (and illegitimate) beliefs, so some seek to impose their views via violence. Indonesia from what I can gather from a few short trips there, discussions with experts, and reading is that the government is doing a relatively good job of addressing the concerns of their people (within reason in a developing country), so people aren't fighting because they're being discriminating against. They're fighting to impose their extreme and unpopular beliefs. We're talking Martin L. King freedom marches here (lol).

The Philippines is another issue altogether, since their government does discriminate against their Muslim population. The government does little to address the concerns of their Muslim population, and while President Aquino has a been light of hope, his time is getting short, and not unlike our system their Congress is corrupt and eager to undo much of the progress he has made. I project the situation will devolve for the worse in the Philippines.

Regardless of the conditions on the ground, the terrorists in these countries will reconnect, or strengthen their existing links with global terrorist networks based on foreign fighter flow to support ISIL. That points to a bigger challenge for security forces. I also think those who were repulsed by ISIL may find al-Qaeda more attractive if they're still looking a group to affiliate with. Reportedly, the jihadist websites/blogs in Indonesia contain a fierce internal debate between jihadists on whether to support ISIL or AQ.

For one, I see no reason this will go away in 10 years, but hopefully it can be contained to a manageable level.
Sorry for being unclear. I meant to ask if you have any statistics as the above for Europe, but for SE Asia.

In most cases, yes, the GoI is doing a pretty decent job staving off the IS/Daesh message. Having said that domestic politics often play up the muslim angle with predictable results. We are, by no means, a bastion for the IS in Asia, but it is gaining popularity in certain demographics.

What is truly astounding is still the lack of major attacks so far. This is mostly because the majority of the population is muslim, so there's some restraint there. Heavy intelligence/security operations also seem to keep their numbers down, although it does not change the fact that the radical/extremist view is a growing concern. Especially among high schools and college campuses.
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Old 03-22-2015   #82
Bill Moore
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A few links that may be helpful.

http://file.understandingconflict.or...n_Conflict.pdf

http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articl...s-goes-to-asia

Quote:
In 2012, ISIS’ appeal started to grow among Indonesian and Malaysian civil society groups that had mobilized in response to Syria’s humanitarian crisis by creating local awareness and fundraising. Within a year, several Islamic preachers in Indonesia had pledged allegiance to ISIS’ caliphate, and about half a dozen graduates from Indonesia’s Ngruki Islamic boarding school, previously a hotbed of Jemaah Islamiyah membership ideology and recruitment, are believed to have left to join the jihad in Syria (often with funding from Jemaah Islamiyah and other affiliated extremist groups).
Later in the article it explains that unlike returning fighters from Afghanistan in the early 90s, the current fighters have lost the advantage of surprise. Security forces will be monitoring the problem much more closely.

http://khabarsoutheastasia.com/en_GB.../07/feature-02

Not stats, but interesting nonetheless.

"
Quote:
I am sending this message to you, Moeldoko, the National Police, and Densus 88, as well as Banser," Abu Jandal states, referring to NU's security wing.

"We are awaiting your arrival here (in Syria)… If you're not coming, we will come to you. We will return to Indonesia to enforce Sharia Islam. For those who are against us, we will slaughter each of you one by one".
http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2...s-se-asia.html

ISIS posts footage of boy-trainees from SE Asia

Quote:
The footage depicts a group of at least 20 boys studying, praying, eating and undergoing defence and weapons lessons in territory held by the terrorist group.
Quote:
There has been a surge in Indonesian- and Malay-language material posted by ISIS online," Jasminder Singh, a research analyst at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, told The Straits Times.
http://www.mei.edu/content/map/how-i...sian-militants

Quote:
The Islamic State’s (ISIS) media wing, Al-Hayat Media Center, recently released a video entitled “Join the Ranks” that features a group of Indonesian foreign fighters in Syria. In the video, the charismatic Indonesian militant Bahrumsyah calls on his fellow Indonesian Muslims to migrate to the land of the “caliphate.”[1] It is estimated that 100 to 300 Indonesian militants have gone to fight in Syria.[2] While some are spread across al-Qa‘ida (AQ)-affiliated groups such as Ahrar Sham, this essay focuses specifically on links between Indonesian militants and ISIS. Indonesians and Malaysians fighting for ISIS appear to have formed their own military unit, the Katibah Nusantara.[3] Meanwhile, 2,000 people across the Indonesian archipelago pledged allegiance to ISIS earlier this year.[4]
http://www.establishmentpost.com/ase...outheast-asia/

Quote:
Asean is the fourth largest exporting region in the world. It is the most diverse and fast-moving competitive region in the world. All this would be lost if the region was riddled with terror attacks and violence.

ISIS presence in Southeast Asia
Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), the largest Muslim rebel group in the Philippines, has condemned extremist jihadists in Iraq and Syria, and vowed to stop the spread of their “virus” into the Southeast Asian nation.
Another Philippine rebel group Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) claims Sunni preachers have been conducting recruitment for ISIS members.
Al-Qaeda affiliate Abu Sayyaf pledges allegiance to ISIS.
Much more in the article . . .
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Old 03-26-2015   #83
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Apparently DI cells in Indonesia is starting to go active.

Last month, a DI cell in Depok - a suburb of the capital - attempted to activate a chlorine laced IED.

Quote:
Jakarta. Indonesian militants believed to have returned from fighting with the Islamic State group in Syria are suspected of being behind an attempted chlorine bomb attack in a shopping mall last month, police said on Wednesday.

The homemade device — made up of several bottles and a detonator — was discovered in the ITC Depok mall south of Jakarta after it failed to go off properly. Police said it was the first such attack ever attempted in Indonesia.

Insp. Gen. Tito Karnavian of the National Police said the use of the chlorine resembled tactics employed by IS jihadists, who have taken over a vast swathe of territory in Syria and Iraq.

“It really surprised us,” said the former commander of the police’s elite counter-terror unit Densus 88. “This is a signature of ISIS,” he added, referring to the jihadists by an alternative name. “It is connected to a group likely already returned from Syria.”

He said police were pursuing “very good leads” into the bomb attempt but would not reveal further details. Exposure to chlorine gas causes intense irritation to the eyes, skin and airways, and can be deadly.

IS has been accused of using chlorine, notably in a Jan. 23 car bomb attack on Kurdish forces in Iraq. The Syrian regime has also been accused of carrying out chlorine gas attacks.

A police source told BeritaSatu earlier this month that all the chemicals used to manufacture the bomb were relatively easily available, and that the perpetrators of the failed attack in Depok may have attempted to produce the nerve agent sarin.

Indonesia, a hotbed of extremist violence in the past, has largely dismantled the Islamic militant networks responsible for a string of deadly attacks throughout the country in the early 2000s.

But the rise of IS poses a new threat, with nearly 160 Indonesians confirmed by police as having left to join IS, and authorities worried about the potential for radicals to revive extremist groups on their return.

Indonesian anti-terror police this week arrested five men who allegedly arranged for a group of mostly women and children to try and enter Syria to join IS.
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Old 03-26-2015   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WarPorcus View Post
Apparently DI cells in Indonesia is starting to go active.

Last month, a DI cell in Depok - a suburb of the capital - attempted to activate a chlorine laced IED.
This certainly has the potential to go viral, or at least viral enough to set back the progress Indonesia has made in recent years. I tend to look at Indonesia (like other countries) as a kaleidoscope, and with a small twist of the scope the picture can change radically. If you only view Indonesia through the eyes of a counterterrorist you see jihadists behind every bush, if you only view Indonesia through the eyes of democratic reformer, you only see hope behind every bush, and if you only view Indonesia as a businessman, you see opportunity behind every bush. Few people are that narrow minded, and most realize that reality rests upon shifting sands that can shift with great suddenness for the better or the worse.
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Old 04-20-2015   #85
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http://news.yahoo.com/asia-needs-mil...075027922.html

Indonesia military launches anti-IS operation on eastern island

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JAKARTA (Reuters) - Indonesia's military has launched an anti-terrorism operation on the eastern island of Sulawesi to crack down on militants with suspected links to Islamic State, the armed forces chief said on Monday.
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Old 07-26-2015   #86
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Default Breaking ISIS: Indonesia's Legal Position on the 'Foreign Terrorist Fighters' Threat

An Australian academic article, which although with a legal focus does provide a quick overview of the presence and activity of ISIS in Indonesia:http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.c...act_id=2627961

The Abstract:
Quote:
Indonesia, as signatory and co-sponsor of United Nations Security Council Resolution 2170, has committed to suppressing the flow of foreign terrorist fighters (FTFs), along with financing and other support, for Islamist extremist groups operating in Iraq and Syria – in particular the group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS). Varying levels of support for ISIS have been observed in Indonesia, including displays of ISIS paraphernalia, support rallies, swearing of allegiance to the caliphate and an uncertain number of individuals travelling to the region to fight. Recognising the risk posed by support for ISIS and returning FTFs, the Indonesian government announced a 'ban' on the terrorist organisation in 2014. However, doubt remains with regard to the legal and practical enforcement of the 'ban' by Indonesian police and actions they are able to take against ISIS's Indonesian supporters. While there have been calls for the government to enact a new law or revise existing laws to specifically address ISIS and its supporters in Indonesia, it is uncertain if or when such a law could be finalised and passed. Accordingly, this article examines the legal position as it exists under current Indonesian law with respect to preventing and punishing supporters of ISIS.
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Old 07-27-2015   #87
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One major side effect of the US invasion of Iraq was the destabilization of the Shia-Sunni line of competition that once lie along the Iraq-Iran border.

Where is that line now? Along the northern borders of Kuwait, KSA, Jordan and Israel? Is that better? Hardly.

We created a band of Shia influence that consumed the Sunni-Arab populations of Syria and Iraq - quite likely producing the strategic tipping point for why those populations erupted into revolutionary insurgency against their respective governments. There was, and remains, little hope for those populations under either of those Shia dominated regimes.

Then along comes ISIS, sees a parade and leaps in front (to paraphrase Mao who grasped a similar opportunity in China back in the 30s).

So, to this article on Indonesians, and equally to those who travel from Europe, Africa and elsewhere. Is it just possible, that they do not travel to support ISIS, but rather travel to support the return of stability to this existential Sunni-Shia competition that our efforts kicked into motion??

Similarly for (the comparatively vastly under-reported) foreign Shia who travel to this same region in support of the Shia side of the competition.

We need to stop fixating on "threats" when we think about the strategic nature (and correspondingly, durable strategic solutions) to these problems.

Here are two questions US policy makers must form and communicate answers to:

1. What is the US plan to restore stability to the Shia-Sunni line of competition? (My current belief is that the Euphrates is the best bet for a new line.)

2. What is the tangible, viable political alternative to the Shia dominated governments of Syria and Iraq that we can advocate to the Sunni Arab populations of those two failing states?


Until we address those two issues, all we are doing is attempting to suppress the current challengers and reset the political conditions of failure that brought us to this place to begin with.

We have created a modern "crusade" of Muslims traveling to the holy lands to fight for their respective beliefs. While this was not intended, it has happened, and it was very, very predictable. The sooner we work to frame and communicate a strategy dedicated to these two ends, the sooner we begin to stop slapping at the symptoms and set a course to a strategically durable result that few will like, but that all can live with.
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Old 07-29-2015   #88
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Quote:
Here are two questions US policy makers must form and communicate answers to:

1. What is the US plan to restore stability to the Shia-Sunni line of competition? (My current belief is that the Euphrates is the best bet for a new line.)

2. What is the tangible, viable political alternative to the Shia dominated governments of Syria and Iraq that we can advocate to the Sunni Arab populations of those two failing states?
I agree that for the most part the post war tensions between the Shia and Sunnis would explode into a Civil War if an effective government (read strong man) wasn't installed. It should have been clear after the USSR invasion of Afghanistan that foreign fighters from the global umma would mobilize to support their brothers. But here we are, and unfortunately strategy is cumulative, we don't have the option to start all over. One administration inherits what those before have left.

Strategy should focus on protecting and progressing our interests, and I'm not convinced restoring stability between the Shia and Sunni is feasible or in our longer term interests at this time. It seems that neither side is ready to discuss acceptable alternative forms of government at this time. As long as they feel they can achieve their goals militarily they'll continue to fight. How does this condition threaten our interests? How do we mitigate that threat? Proposals need to be feasible. Right now it seems all sides are providing just enough support to sustain the status humanitarian disaster status quo.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #89
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Article posted on the SWJ News Roundup

http://www.latimes.com/world/asia/la...ry.html#page=1

Meet two Indonesians who are training to join Islamic State
Quote:
"I think there's some evidence that there's enough of a support base [in Indonesia] that if they got the green light from ISIS — which they haven't yet — they could quite quickly set up a structure of ISIS here," Jones said. "It would be tiny and there would be lots of opposition, but it raises concerns [that they might] follow other kinds of orders from ISIS, which could include violence."
As many readers know, over half of the world's Muslims reside in South and Southeast Asia. The potential for extremism is alarming, but unfortunately despite our claims of dedicating effort to remain left of bang, we tend to ignore this and focus on the 5 meter knife fight.

Quote:
According to an Australian intelligence report obtained by news website The Intercept, two Indonesian commercial pilots have pledged devotion to Islamic State. Ridwan Agustin, a former AirAsia pilot, may have already traveled to Syria
.

It doesn't many to have a strategic impact. ISIL conducts a more or less conventional in Syria and Iraq, and an atomized global surrogate war with self-radicalized individuals of various capabilities. An airline pilot controls a potential weapon of mass destruction.

Quote:
"For Muslim people, there's a quite famous proverb: Live in dignity, or die in jihad. If we die doing this, we will have won."
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