Schlagwort-Archive: training

„Miqdaad, the Afghan Blitz“ – German Jihadi Killed in Kunduz

by Florian Flade

The called him „The Afghan Lighting“ because it only took a few weeks from arriving in Waziristan to enter Afghanistan and fight Nato forces in the northern region of Kunduz – Abdullah H. from the West German city of Essen.

A new propaganda tape by the „Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan“ (IMU) celebrates the martyrdom of the German Jihadi militant who was known as „Miqdaad“ amongst the mujahidin fighters.

„Today my special greetings from Khorasan go out to the brothers and sisters in Essen“ – Yassin C., a well-known Jihadi from Bonn says in the new video – „Dear brothers and sisters in Essen, from your city, Allah has choosen a very diligent brother who stood amongst you during prayer only a short time ago. A brother who walked the streets of Essen and did not really attract attention.“

Abdullah from Essen arrived in Waziristan in November 2010, IMU says, and completed military training in January 2011. „A short time later, he traveled to Northern Afghanistan“, German terrorist Yassin C. tells – „On March 20 2011 he (Abdullah) died a martyr´s death in Baghlan, near Kunduz, fighting American soldiers.“

When Abdullah aka „Miqdad“ joined the IMU in the Pakistani tribal areas he told his trainers, he wants to fight in Afghanistan soon. „Please quickly sent me to Kunduz because I want to kill Germans so bad“, he allegedly said.

In the newly released propaganda tape Abdullah H. is seen masked surrounded by Jihadi comrades somewhere in Kunduz. „It´s me, your brother Miqdad“, the son of Afghan immigrants says, „I greet all my brothers and sisters around the world, especially in Germany. All praise is to Allah that I came here to the mujahidin in Afghanistan and Pakistan and was tasked with this special operation to fight the Germans and Nato here in Kunduz.“

German intelligence officials are at the moment trying to contact Abdullah H.´s family in Essen. The young man killed in Kunduz in March was born in Peshawar to parents who fled Afghanistan. In Germany he was not monitored by counter terrorism authorities. Abdullah H. did not appear on any list of possible terrorists. Amongst the Muslim community in Essen he was not known to be one of the extremists. His journey to the Pakistani terror camps happened without German authorities knowing about it.

Recently it became known that another German militant who joined IMU had carried out a suicide operation in Kunduz in 2010. „Farooq the German“ was featured in a German-language IMU tape released a few weeks ago. According to my information this 29-year old militant´s travel movements (came to Waziristan in early 2010) were also not tracked by German intelligence. „We did not know him before the video release“, one German intelligence official told me.

German Jihad News

by Florian Flade

This is a summary of the latest developments in Jihad terrorism-related cases in Germany. As I was very busy in recent weeks I could not update my blog and therefore think it is necessary to provide a little overview for those of you who are interested in German Jihadi News.


Money to Waziristan – Jihadi Veteran & Brother arrested

IMU Jihadi militants in Waziristan

Turgay C. had just left his Cologne apartment, when police approached the 28 year-old German national of Turkish origin, arresting him on the spot Monday morning, February 21. It is not known if Turgay knew at that moment his younger brother, Ömer C., had also been detained by German police. Ömer was hospitalized in Essen´s University Hospital, some 75 kilometers north of Cologne, when he was arrested.

Since February 18, police were in possession of two arrest warrants fo the brothers who are now accused of financially supporting terrorism. Ömer C. and Turgay C. are suspected of being members of a Jihadi supporters network, reaching from France to the Netherlands and Germany. The group, German intelligence learned, was collecting donations from Jihad supporters in Europe and sending it to the Pakistan-based „Islamic Movement Uzbekistan“ (IMU).

Investigation by German authorities showed the C.-Brothers were recruited by a man named Irfan D., a French-Dutch national of Turkish descent, who had lived in France and is suspected of being involved in supporting IMU since the 1990s. D. is said to be closely linked with people living in the Cologne region of Western Germany, associated of the self proclaimed „Calliph of Cologne“, Mettin Kaplan. One of the now arrested Islamists is a son-in-law of Kaplan, who was arrested in 2004 and extradited to Turkey on charges of plotting to overthrow the Turkish government in a terror coup. In Turkey he was sentenced to life in prison for treason.

German prosecution is now preparing to charge Turgay C.. The charges are support of terrorist activities abroad. Turgay C., investigators claim, had sent 39,000 EUROs to Pakistan to support IMU. Phone-calls and e-mails he received from the terror group ordered him to transfer the donations, which police believe came from several supporters living in Germany. According to my information, German investigators are convinced the support for IMU is not one based on single individuals but on a whole network collecting large sums not only in Germany but several European countries.

Turgay´s brother Ömer C. has been to a Jihadi training camp in Waziristan. He traveled to Pakistan in September 2009 and returned almost exactly one year later. What made him return to Germany was an injury he got while fighting the Pakistani military in the tribal areas.


Adnan Loves Guns

German TV HR was reporting last week, a convicted Jihadi terrorist, Adnan V., was able to obtain a license to legally buy firearms in Germany – and so he did. Adnan V., who was arrested in October 2009 after authorities learned he had recruited people over the Internet from to join Jihad and he himself had built explosive devices in his apartment in Offenbach. In 2008 V. bought two rifles and a handgun and regularly attended a local shooting range for practice.

The local administration was unaware of Adnan V.´s Islamist background, police said after HR reported the story. Obtaining the weapon´s license was perfectly legal back then – V. had passed all the necessary tests and had no crime record.


The Frankfurt Raid – Haddid Again?

As I reported two weeks ago, German police raided numerous sights in the city of Frankfurt on February 22, as part of an investigation into a possible Jihadi recruitment network led by a prominent Salafi preacher from Morocco. Though it was kind of surprising such a famous cleric like Sheikh Abdullatif (who is part of a Youtube-Preacher generation and part of the „Die Wahre Religion“ missionary movement) would be involved in terror recruiting, the most surprising fact is the arrest of another person in the Frankfurt raid.

In the police´s press release to the media it only read several men of Eritrean, German, Moroccan and Afghan nationality were being investigated and their property have been searched. The Afghan man it turns out, is Haddid N. For those not following this blog that often: Haddid N., born to Afghan parents, is the Frankfurt University student who was detained by US forces in Kabul (Afghanistan) back in January and then released after the news was spread by German media and German politicians intervened.

N.´s sister had told a German newspaper she suspected German officials of having given information about Haddid´s whereabouts to the Americans. Haddid N. was arrested in his father´s house in Kabul only a few days after German police had visited the sister and asked about why her brother had traveled to Afghanistan after originally vacationing in Dubai.

German counter-terrorism had investigated Haddid because it was suspected he harbors the desire of traveling to Pakistan and join a terror group for Jihad. By summer 2010 police stopped the observation and where then alarmed when Haddid and a friend traveled to the Middle East. Haddid´s friend had then returned to Germany but the Frankfurt student instead decided to take a flight to Afghanistan.

As it seems now, police still following possible links between Haddid N. and terror-related activities. Police questioned Sheikh Abdullatif but did not arrest anybody else.

The Frankfurt-based Salafi missionary group „DawaFFM“ meanwhile released a video statement, highlighting the action of the police in last week´s raid and calling the whole accusation a „war against Islam“.


„Mrs.Jihad“ Found Guilty – German Terror Supporter Network Widens

German convert Eric Breininger saying thank-you to Filiz G.

In Berlin the trial against supporters of the „Deutsche Taliban Mujahidin“ (DTM) group is going on with a new suspect charged. Filiz Gelowicz (wife of convicted Sauerland Terrorist Fritz Gelowicz), and Alican T. are standing on trial since November 4 2010, accused of sending money to Waziristan and thereby financing a terrorist group.

Fatih K., the new defendant appeared in front of the court for the first time last Friday, spotting shoulder-long hair. K. was hunted by German police since August 2010 but was able to escape the surveillance and flee to Turkey where he was hiding near the Syrian border till local authorities arrested him in September 2010.

At the start of his trial in Berlin, Fatih K. confessed having sent money to DTM in Pakistan, communicating with the leaders of the group, mainly German-born Turkish national Ahmet M. („Salahuddin Turki“). M., who was killed in a gunbattle with Pakistani troops in Waziristan in April 2010, was also in touch with Filiz Gelowicz, sending her e-mails almost every day, telling her to raise money and produce videos to attract donations.

Filiz Gelowicz, arrested in February 2010, has confessed the charges back in December. She managed the German-speaking Online Jihad in 2008 and 2009, and admitted of having been online for almost 24 hours a day, posting messages, statements and videos on the Ansar Forum´s German section. Under the anonymous „fisebilillah“ she informed other forum members of the situation in Waziristan, translated postings by the Turkish Jihadi militants in Pakistan and also called for violent Jihad, writing about „slaughtering the dirty kuffar“. More than a 1.000 entries were posted by Gelowicz, including Jihadi videos.

From November 2009 to February 2010 Filiz Gelowicz, Alican T. and Fatih K. sent 4300 EUROs to the Jihadi militants of DTM residing in Waziristan. The money was transfered via Western Union accounts in Turkey. „Of course I knew it was used to buy weapons“, Filiz Gelowicz said in court. In addition, other material, food items and books, were sent to Pakistan by „Mrs.Jihad“.

The German Taliban Mujaheddin did thank Filiz Gelowicz in at least two propaganda videos for the money, her comittment and effort. „Thank you to fisebillah“ and „Thank you Abu Kaka“ – the texts in the video read. „fisebillah“ was Gelowicz´s Online username, „Abu Kaka“ was choosen by Fatih K..

Mrs.Gelowiczs was found guilty on March 9 and sentenced to two-and-a-half years in prison. In her last statement in front of the judge, Filiz Gelowicz claimed she feels sorry for what she did. Islam was a religion of peace, not of war and hate, Gelowicz said, „I have done harm to my religion.“

The terrorist wife was allowed to leave prison until her prison term starts. Until then „Mrs.Jihad“ is a free person.


Kevin The Wannabe-Jihadi On Trial

Kevin S. in video threatening terror attacks in Germany

Last November, Kevin S. appeared in a amateurish home made video threatening terror attacks in Germany and demanding the release of convicted terrorist Daniel Schneider („Sauerland-Zelle“). On Friday, the 19 year-old Muslim convert of Cameroonian origin appeared in a courtroom in Saarbrücken to face charges.

S. converted to Islam and rapidly radicalized in his political and religious mindset. He admired fellow convert Daniel Schneider, whom he had met personally before the Sauerland Zelle´s arrest in September 2007, and wanted the Pakistan-trained terrorist to be released from prison.

In the beginning he wanted to travel to Afghanistan to fight Jihad, Kevin S. told in courtroom last week, but he lacked money. So he decided to wage Jihad in Germany by building home-made explosive devices.

While attending the mosque he met a man who he befriended with. Both Islamists plotted to build the bombs with the help of manuals which they downloaded from the Internet. According to Kevin S., it was this other person who convinced him to shoot the threat videos which were then posted onto Youtube. „More than 10 Mujahidin are ready strike“, Kevin S. said in one of the tapes, „if brother Daniel Schneider is not released.“

On November 19 2010 police stepped in and arrested Kevin S.. Since summer of 2010 they had monitored the terror suspect and read his e-mails. Authorities knew of Kevin´s intention to wage Jihad.

As it becomes known now through his testimony in court, Kevin is accusing the police of placing a „V-Mann“, a undercover agent posing as a Islamist to drive him into extremism and then arrest him. S. claims the idea of recording the terror threats on camera came were those of his friend, who was working as a police informant. For sure it will be interesting to see how the police will explain this mysterious „friend“ – he also appeared in one of the videos threatening attacks against Germany. Was this all part of a police investigation?

On March 4, Kevin S. was found guilty. His sentence is 16 months in prison.

From Jihadi Camp to NATO Military

by Florian Flade

As a teenager he trained at camp of Pakistani terrorist group Lashkar e-Toiba – later he joined the German military. At first, nobody cared about the Jihadi past of Yannick Nasir, then the Navy sacked him. Now he tells his unique story about growing up with a stepfather who worked for al-Qaida.

Mumbai November 2008 – Lashkar e-Toiba´s Biggest Attack

Yannick Nasir served Germany – twice. First he was a Navy soldier in the German Bundeswehr, stationed off the coast of Lebanon. Later, he testified in front of a court against his own stepfather – convicted al-Qaida terrorist Aleem Nasir. Both services were not appreciated and rewarded by German officials the way Yannick Nasir expected. He lost both his job in the German military and gave up his identity to live a life in hiding from those seeking revenge for the conviction of his stepfather.

Two years after Aleem Nasir, a German national of Pakistani descent, was found guilty having supported al-Qaida in Pakistan with money and equipment, his stepson Yannick told German radio SWR his own personal story. It is the story of a horrible family experience, the story of a violent and abusive father who pushed his own family into radical Islam and the shadowy world of terrorist networks. It is also the story of a young man whose dream it was to serve the country he was born in and loved so dearly as a soldier. Military, Yannick Nasir today says, was family to him. All he wanted was to be among friends and comrades.

The story of Yannick Nasir begins in Germersheim, Western Germany. While she was pregnant with him, his mother fell in love with a Pakistani man who had come to Germany to study and work. A few months before Yannick was born, the couple married. Aleem Nasir became the stepfather to the young boy whom his mother wanted to name Yannick Gideon. At the age of one, as a young toddler, Yannick was „forced“ into Islam, converted by his parents who gave him the Muslim name Obaid.

Aleem Nasir never regarded Yannick as his son. He treated him more like a friend or a assistant. While Yannick grew up with parents whom he later described as having a „difficult marriage situation“, Aleem Nasir worked as a draftsman at a nuclear research center near Germersheim. Then came the day that not only changed world politics but also family life for the Nasirs – September 11th 2001.

He remembers, Yannick says, how he told his mother about the building in America that had just exploded on TV, about the plane that hit the towers in New York. Neither his mother nor he as a young teenage boy understood what was happening in Manhattan at that moment. Both were as shocked as most people who followed events in front of their TV. Aleem Nasir was at work but he called his wife. „He was very excited“, Yannick remembers, „almost screaming into the phone.“ His stepfather Yannick later realized knew exactly who was responsible for the terror attacks on New York and Washington. Islam was about to conquer the world, Aleem Nasir was convinced.

In the company he was working in, Nasir, who dressed in long Islamic clothes, having a long beard, was a fully respected person. A colleague with strong religious belief but not a fanatic. All that changed after 9/11. One day, Aleem Nasir climbed onto a table in the company´s canteen chanting „See what happened in New York…you have the same fate!“ This incident caused media attention for the small Western Germany family with the Pakistani father and the German mother and son.

A camera team of Germany´s ZDF TV visited the Nasir family, asking Aleem Nasir if he supports al-Qaida and loved Osama Bin Laden. „I have been living here for more than 15 years“, Nasir responded, „And suddenly I´m the No.1 terrorist in Europe?“ Terrorism he stated, is not the content of the Quran. Muslims should not be held accountable by the German people for 9/11. „I remember“, stepson Yannick says, „When the camera crew left, Aleem said something like: if they would know…“

By the time the world´s media attention focussed on Jihadism, Yannick had already realized his father was committed to a very radical interpretation of Islam. During his travels back and forth to Pakistan, Aleem Nasir had met with several leaders and members of Islamist organizations. He was contacted by Pakistani´s ISI intelligence, too. Allegedly the ISI wanted Aleem Nasir to spy on the German nuclear research program.

Eventually Aleem Nasir lost his job at the nuclear research center. This was the last time he was ever employed. Yannick was beaten by Aleem Nasir, one time even the police showed up to stop the violent stepfather.

In 2002 Aleem Nasir decided to leave Germany. Along with his wife and children he moved to Pakistan, settling in the city of Lahore. Yannick and his mother did not feel comfortable in the new environment. They started to realize that Aleem Nasir for years had lived two lives. One as a family father and immigrant laborer living in Germany, the other as a well-respected, high-ranking member of Pakistan´s Lashkar e-Toiba (LeT) Movement –  a Islamist group declared a terrorist organization by the US. LeT is said to be responsible for the Mumbai Attacks of November 2008 and other terrorists attacks in India and Pakistan.

In Pakistan the group provided Aleem Nasir with bodyguards, drivers and he was even given honorary titles like „Amir“. Aleem was, as Yanick describes his impression from back then, LeT´s ambassador in Germany.

While in Pakistan Aleem Nasir met regularly with LeT´s leader, Hafiz Saeed. Both men were eager to set up a network collection donations from European supports and transferring the money to Pakistan. „One day Aleem read a newspaper article about a Lashkar e-Toiba fighters from a local school who had become a shaheed in Kashmir“, Yannick recounts, „He told me: you should become a fighter, too.“

So shortly after then 15year-old Yannick was sent to a madrassa belonging to the LeT-network and stayed there for months. As one of several dozen students he learned Arabic, read the Quran many hours a day and listened to lectures and Quran recitation. „There was also shooting at targets with Kalashnikovs“, Yannick tells, „I would describe it as something similar to a Hitler-Youth summer camp.“ Yannick Nasir had become Obaid Nasir the mujahed. He adapted radical Jihadi ideology and to a certain percent believed in it. However the German boy was never given the opportunity to fight Jihad in Afghanistan or Kashmir. His family moved back to Germany some time after Yannick left the LeT camp.

Back in Germany, Aleem Nasir started to raise money for LeT. He collected donations from mosque and Islamic centers around Western Germany, become a close associate of Dr.Yusif and other known figures of the radical Islamist community in and around Ulm.

Nasir traveled between Pakistan and Germany, trying to establish a gemstone trade to make even more money for LeT. The organization itself struggled to keep its position in Pakistan. Hafiz Saeed, the leader, was put under house arrest and Pakistani authorities ordered a stop to LeT´s calls for Jihad The political atmosphere with strong NATO presence in neighboring Afghanistan forced the Pakistani leadership to calm down those allies driven by Jihadi ideology.

LeT kept on demanding Aleem to send money. If the Jihad was stopped, Aleem Nasir asked, why does LeT still need the money from Germany? He became suspicious. For years he had worked hard to support the Jihad, he had even sent Yannick with 40,000 US-Dollars in cash, hidden in chocolate packaging to smuggle to Pakistan.
During one trip to Pakistan, Aleem Nasir learned LeT had used the money for very different purposes. The organization´s leaders bought cars, real estate and other things – but Aleem´s money was not fueling Jihad in Afghanistan or Kashmir. Disappointed and angry, the German national was not willing anymore to send money. At that point Aleem was contacted by al-Qaida.

Yannick says the man who approached Aleem introduced himself as „the deputy to Ayman az-Zawahiri in Pakistan“. The al-Qaida member made an offer. Aleem could work for al-Qaida and become the network´s head of logistics in Germany. Money, equipment as well as new fighters from Europe were needed. Finally Aleem Nasir agreed.

With the help of two other Islamists from Germany, Nasir bought nightvision devices and flashlights and sent them to al-Qaida in Pakistan. He himself traveled several times to the Pakistan-Afghan border region and met with high-ranking al-Qaida members in the tribal areas of Waziristan.
In Germany he was searching for acceptable candidates for terror training in Waziristan, and found – among others – a young German-Moroccan from Bonn – Bekkay Harrach. Harrach traveled to Waziristan in 2007 with a written note from Aleem proving he was a trustworthy recruit. Later Harrach rose the ranks of al-Qaida and was featured in two propaganda tapes threatening attacks against Germany.

At that time – 2007 – Yannick Nasir, who knew of his stepfather´s business and his travels to al-Qaida heartland, left the family. Yannick was fed up with the violent, angry father who treated him like a slave. His mother´s marriage, he says, was just a lie for Aleem to win his citizenship. The stepson had a great dream of becoming a soldier serving Germany. What if the military would find out about his past training at a Pakistani terror camp? Yannick decided to try a different approach to become a military man.

He drove to Straßbourg on the French side of the border, willing to sign up for the Foreign Legion. „They offered a new identity, which I wanted at that time“, Yannick Nasir says, „And they offered good money.“ The first aptitude check in sports Yannick passed, the second one he failed. Foreign Legion suddenly was a dead end, so he went back to Germany and enlisted in the Bundeswehr (Germany´s military). Surprisingly he was accepted and eventually trained as a Navy soldier.

On board of Frigate „Hessen“, Yannick served as part of UNIFIL, the peacekeeping mission in Lebanon, starting from 2007. Yannick´s dream came close to being true, he planned on a officer cadet career. He kept quiet about his experience in Pakistan, about his time in the LeT camp, about the weapon´s training and the Jihadi brainwashing. That was the past, something he wanted to forget and erase from his life, a dark time he never wanted to return to.

„One time I talked to my commander“, says Yannick, „he told me he was informed about my past and my biography.“ It was obviously no problem in the eyes of the military leadership to have a trained Jihadi fighter in the German Navy. In July 2008, then Minister of Foreign Affairs, Frank-Walter Steinmeier visited the „Hessen“ off the coast of Lebanon. Picture were taken for the press releases. In one of the images Steinmeier is seen greeting soldiers standing in line – one of them is Yannick Nasir, holding a gun.

German military´s internal intelligence agency, the „Militärische Abschirmdienst“ (MAD) is responsible for checking soldier´s backgrounds, hunting for possible spies or security threats. As it seems now they checked Yannick Nasir and they knew of his terror camp experience, yet they thought he had given up the Jihadi ideology and was no security anymore.

Mid-2008 Yannick´s stepfather Aleem was arrested by German police after he returned from Pakistan. Investigators had gathered enough information to put him on trial for supporting al-Qaida and recruiting terrorists. Police visited Yannick and asked him if he would tell the judge about all his experience with Aleem, about the travels, the people he met, the things he said and did.

Yannick thought about the police´s request. Later he told in court the decision to testify against Aleem was made when he saw the coffins of German soldiers on TV, soldiers who had died in Afghanistan in the war on terror. Under one condition, Yannick told his lawyers and police, he would tell everything he knew about Aleem and his al-Qaida support network: „I want to keep my job.“ As he understood it, German authorities promised to meet that condition, telling him he should not worry about his job in the German military.

With a German flag pinned to his jacket as a symbol of support for the country, Yannick finally appeared in court in 2008 and 2009 as the principal witness, testifying in great length against Aleem Nasir. His statements were important for the court to sentence Nasir to eight years in prison for support and membership of a terrorist organization in July 2009. Yannick, was about to talk a al-Qaida terrorist into prison, was put under a witness protection program by the regional police. It is very likely he changed his identity.

For Yannick the trial against his stepfather did not work out as wished. The military fired him, telling him because of „personal reasons“ he could no longer be member of the armed forces. Today the former Jihadi says German authorities lied and tricked him into testifying against Aleem. He feels fooled and is angry about how the military in which he served as a good soldier, dropped him just like that.

„The whole thing did not pay off for me“, Yannick Nasir told German radio, „To the contrary: I have lost much of my life´s quality. Nevertheless I´m satisfied I did testify, I do not regret one second of it.“

Holger Schmidt, SWR´s Terrorism expert who interviewed Yannick Nasir at secret places the former Jihadi and former soldier picked for the meetings, has asked the German military why they sacked him – he did not receive any answer prior to the radio show´s release on Wednesday evening.

„This young man risked alot for Germany und has been dropped by the Bundeswehr like a hot potato“, Schmidt says. Neither the prosecutor attorney nor the judge in the trial against Aleem Nasir regarded Yannick Nasir as a security threat in any way. „Why shouldn´t he be a soldier?“, Schmidt asks.

Yannick Nasir´s story at SWR – „Inside al-Qaida“ by Holger Schmidt