Earlier this year, in April, ISIS released a propaganda video which warned that America will burn again in another 9/11. It was also chillingly communicated that there is “no safety for any American on the globe”. The video, entitled “We Will Burn America,” was a call to arms to its supporters, rallying them to conduct these attacks.
Unfortunately, 14 years after 9/11 the policies and actions of our government give the false impression that we are a country with no enemies and nothing to fear. Terror cases continue to increase and so far, in 2015, the amount of terror cases in the US exceeds the number of terror cases each year since 9/11. The Boston Bombing was completely preventable had the feds acted on tips given to them and terrorist group, al Shabaab, has been allowed to operate and thrive in Minnesota for years. It is a known recruiting ground for al Shabaab, but Somali-Americans from this region, have been busted by the authorities for attempting to join ISIS.
Any attack perpetrated upon the US need not come from without. In addition to ISIS supporter activity and ISIS cells reportedly in the country, in recent years the majority of threats coming from al Qaeda have come from al Qaeda members living in the US, some of whom were born in the US. Additionally, in 2012 the RAND Report documented the Obama Administration’s intricate collaboration with The Muslim Brotherhood.
In 1988, the founder of the Council of American Islamic Relations (CAIR), Omar Ahmad, cleared up any speculation about its purpose and that of the jihad when he said: “Islam isn’t in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant.”
Of course, throwing all caution to the wind and accepting thousands of largely unvetted Syrian refugees into the country certainly won’t improve the already dire situation. And, so far the Obama administration has green lighted almost half a million refugees into the US, with another 70,000 being considered. Al Qaeda has taken advantage of the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP) in the past–and, why wouldn’t they? With the program’s shoddy vetting system, we can expect that more terrorists, such as ISIS, will exploit this easy route into America:
“…two al Qaeda affiliates, in 2012, who were living in Kentucky at the time of their indictment, were able to enter the US legally through a resettlement program for ‘vulnerable’ refugees.
And, that’s just one example:
‘At a December 4th, 2012 hearing on terrorist exploitation of refugee programs, it was revealed that the Kentucky case was not a one-time glitch in the system. Chairman of the Subcommittee on Counterterrorism and Intelligence, Patrick Meehan (R-PA), voiced some concerns, testifying that the ‘threat posed by refugees with ties to al Qaeda is much broader than was previously believed.’ This is basically a reiteration of the FBI’s then-director Robert Mueller’s testimony, last year, before a House Intelligence Committee in which he admitted having ongoing concerns about individuals who may have been resettled here in the United States that have some association with al Qaeda in Iraq. In addition to that, immigration officials have given the FBI the names of roughly 300 Iraqi refugees, for further investigation.’”
Obama’s war on ISIS is being fought so poorly that even some, who normally support his actions, are appalled by the lack of direction and real effort. At the same time, the FBI cybercrimes unit, which is tasked with policing the Internet, has all but ignored ISIS’ potentially deadly online activities:
“So, why is it so important to combat ISIS online? Now that the terrorist organization is operating on both the surface web and the Darknet, the FBI is concerned about the nature of the group’s Darknet activities and the government’s inability to circumvent them. ISIS is currently using the Darknet to inspire terror attacks around the globe, recruit, boost finances and provide military training. The group has also been found to have access to classified US documents, including detailed missile diagrams, diagrams of weak armor points in US vehicles such as M1 Abram Tanks and Bradley Fighting Vehicles and combat training methods used by coalition forces.
ISIS’ recruitment impacts the battlefield by increasing the number of ISIS fighters. It has also been noted that ISIS has fine-tuned its online presence by enlisting skilled hackers and others with technical expertise. The terrorists’ online activity also serves to inspire ISIS supporters to act, as we have seen in instances such as the Draw Mohammed contest in Garland, TX.”
Enter Operation ISIS (OpISIS), an operation which was launched eight months ago in order to combat ISIS online. OpISIS consists of Anonymous hacktivists and Ghost Security (GhostSec), a group of counterterrorism hacktivists. The operation has gone beyond simply shutting terrorist accounts down, having developed into a force that has had impact on the ground as well as online. GhostSec works closely with Controlling Section (CtrlSec) under the banner of OpISIS. GhostSec is an internationally-based counter terrorism unit and it’s cyber operations consist of collecting actionable threat intelligence, advanced analytics, cyberwarfare using offensive capabilities,surveillance and providing situation awareness. The group’s mission is, “to eliminate the online presence of Islamic extremist groups such as Islamic State (IS), Al-Qaeda, Al-Nusra, Boko Haram and Al-Shabaab in an effort to stymie their recruitment and limit their ability to organize international terrorist efforts.”
GhostSec is now in constant contact with the FBI and authorities in other parts of the world, alerting them to serious threats they have uncovered. Sometimes specific individuals are threatened and in other cases a particular area or event has been targeted. In the case of the Garland, TX incident, an OpISIS affiliated Twitter user sent a tweet to the Garland Police Department’s official Twitter account, alerting the agency to a potential ISIS attack in Texas. The tweet was sent days in advance of the attack.Similarly, in April the pro-ISIS media group, Rabitat al-Ansar, posted the names, phone numbers, addresses and email addresses of Americans, Canadians, and others on Just Paste It. But, this communication was quickly intercepted by a GhostSec operative and the list was turned over to the FBI. They have also been credited with foiling a terror attack in Tunisia and also warned the authorities of terror attacks planned for the 4th of July weekend in NYC. This assembly of counterterrorism volunteers consists largely of ex-military members and individuals with a strong background in computer security.
This is hardly the first time Americans citizens have voluntarily stepped up to the plate to serve their country. One of the most notable times in history was during World War II, when thousands across the country were mobilized out of a sense of honor, duty and necessity to do whatever needed to be done to support the war effort. With Rosie The Riveter being iconic of this patriotic movement, here are a few examples of what was accomplished:
- German U-boats utilized the backlighting of cities on the coast in the Eastern Seaboard and the South to destroy ships leaving harbors. Civilians were recruited as a defense to ensure that lights had been turned off or thick curtains were in place and drawn shut.
- The United Service Organizations (USO) was founded in 1941 in order to boost morale by providing recreation services and entertainment to uniformed military personnel.
- Women volunteered to work for the Red Cross, the USO and in factories that supported the war effort.
- Families set aside fat drippings from cooking for use in soap making.
- “Scrap drives” were held in neighborhoods across the nation, during which scrap copper and brass, for use in artillery shells, was collected.
That is what is needed now–citizens mobilized against ISIS. There are various ways to help defeat the terrorist organization. Aside from enlisting in the military, some have joined anti-ISIS militias who are fighting ISIS in Iraq and Syria. Others, like the hacktivists in OpISIS, use digital weapons to battle ISIS online. If you would like to contribute to the GhostSec volunteers, who have put their lives on hold (and at risk) in order to combat terrorism, you can do so here. Here are some other ways in which you can fight ISIS:
- Utilize social media to keep people abreast of any threats to the US, US citizens abroad and global targets.
- Report terrorist websites, propaganda videos and photos and social media accounts to ghostsec.org and/or the FBI.
- Vote for congressional and presidential candidates who are strong on national security and foreign policy.
- Get involved with national security/counterterrorism oriented organizations. Act For America and The Latte Party are two of many options.
- Support the troops. Here’s a list of resources.
- Support OpISIS financially at this link. You can also support the operation by sharing important alerts from OpISIS members.
- Paranoia isn’t called for, but heightened awareness of your surroundings is. Your vigilance could help to avert an attack.
It is painfully obvious our current government cannot or will not effectively fight ISIS. Maintaining our status as a free country takes effort and dedication–and, not just from the government. This is your country. It’s time to defend it.
“A pint of sweat will save a gallon of blood” – George S. Patton Jr.