NEO – How come Central Asian States have become a Breeding ground for Terrorism

 

by Jean Périer,   … with New Eastern Outlook,  Moscow

[ Editor’s Note: Jean Périer presents the Central Asian participation in Islamic Jihad as a recent concern, due to a few well-publicized terror attacks, but it is not.

These people have been fighting with ISIS in Iraq and Syria for some time, but corporate media did not have much interest in them, as it knew the readers would not care where they were from, when the readers can neither spell it, nor know where it is located.

They all got swept up into the “foreign jihadis” moniker which has been working fine for years now. Poor economic futures at home have found them commonly emigrating to Russia and even to Europe, with ISIS sometimes paying their way to get them planted in places like Europe for future use.

Their home countries do not have the level of counter-terrorism forces needed to stay on top of them, especially given the online technology and evolving skills that are required to get ahead of the Jihadi recruiters.

As I have always said – and been ignored – killing them on the battlefield is a short-term accomplishment, when they can be easily replaced by those waiting in the bullpen training camps. These could be run by ISIS themselves, or any number of foreign intel agencies wanting to have trained jihadis to use in their endless regime-destabilization activities.

I see no way to cut off the supply of replacement recruits. The draw of being part of building a religious Islamic State is a strong one, where devotees expect a long, hard fight. These are not people looking for a change-of-pace summer vacation endeavor, but to be part of something big.

ISIS getting defeated in Iraq and Syria should dampen recruitment, but I fear it will not kill it. A counter-jihad ideology needs to be deployed – a 24/7 website channel with non-stop publicity not only of their horrors but spot-lighting who their supporters are, the ones with sovereign immunity, for now anyway Jim W. Dean ]

Jim’s Editor’s Notes are solely crowdfunded via PayPal[email protected]

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– First published  …  April 25,  2017

Even before the recent terrorist attack in Stockholm, during which a Central Asian native drove a truck in a crowd of pedestrians at high speed, other immigrants from the region were suspected of launching two terrorist attacks in Turkey last year, along with the recent one committed in St. Petersburg.

 

The fact that the man suspected of Stockholm attack, which resulted in the death of four people, came to the EU from Uzbekistan drew the attention of western security operatives to the former Soviet republics of Central Asia that have recently become a source of extremism.

But how natives from CIS countries have so suddenly become a major terrorist threat to the world? The answer is pretty logical, since the rise of terrorism in Central Asia is closely linked to the chaos that Afghanistan has been submerged into in the last couple years.

This trend is aggravated even further by the fact that such states as Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan have no special services to speak of, while social conditions in these states leave much to be desired. Additionally, the armed forces that most Central Asian states have are not capable of adequately negating the flow of terrorists in and out of their countries.

Therefore, one could hardly expect that any of the above listed states would be able to single-handedly bring down ISIS or track those Central Asian citizens that were fighting on the side of this terrorist organization before returning home.

It should not be forgotten that any criminal environment can be a potential breeding ground for terrorism. Large criminal groups or other marginal social groups that are turning individuals into would-be-terrorists if they are to be approached by radical recruiters. However, at the heart of any criminal activities lies the economic situation that a state has found itself into.

Countries with weak economies and high unemployment rates are virtually pushing the lowest strata of the population into getting engaged in offensive activities. That is where extremist recruiters come in, offering both significant financial benefits to those willing to take the risk of becoming a terrorist and the long-time occupation to all sorts of marginals. If there’s no financing, there’s no terrorism.

The low cultural level of the marginals that are usually getting recruited by terrorist groups usually can be easily transformed into the fanatical devotions to the ideas of radicalism, that exists with the sole purpose of reducing the costs of needed to stage a terrorist act.

Today thousands of migrants from CIS countries are leave their homes in a bid to earn a little bit of extra in Russia, Europe, and the Middle East. How many of them are prepared to learn demolition techniques or execute a terrorist attack – is a tough guess to make. It matters not that terrorist groups are pursuing somebody else’s political and financial goals, instead of being engaged in any sort of genuine religious warfare, as long as they pay good.

The German Sueddeutsche Zeitung notes that a great number of terrorist attacks in recent years were committed by Uzbek-born terrorists. The media source is convinced that Uzbekistan is gradually sliding into the chaos of terrorism, while notes that ISIS has recently been recruiting large number of militants from the Central Asian countries like Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Tajikistan. In total, according to some estimates, up to five thousand citizens of these countries are fighting in the ranks today.

In addition, the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) (also known as the Islamic Party of Turkestan), which began its malicious activities back in the 90s and is now considered one of the most active extremist groups in Central Asia. It has recently expanded its area of operations to Tajikistan, serving as a recruiting center for the Al-Qaida, but now its militants swore their allegiance to ISIS. Their stated goal is to create a single Islamist stretching all across the Central Asia.

The same Sueddeutsche Zeitung has recently been citing an unnamed source in the Federal Intelligence Service of Germany that would claim that IMU has a wide network of affiliates and supporters in a number of countries. Extremist from all over the globe have been joining its ranks, in particular, the movement has managed to recruit several German Salafists who were then used to urge their fellow citizens to start an armed struggle against the government.

The terrorist groups in Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan have decided to make it their goal to introduce the Sharia law across the region, notes the Swedish Aftonbladet. The media source argues that they were initially created as a form of protest against the harsh repressive regimes that were established once those stated countries gained independence from the Soviet Union.

The number of militants from Central Asia that are fighting in the Islamic States was underestimated initially. However, once the fight against this terrorist group in Iraq and Syria moved into an active stage, they began to return to Afghanistan or Turkey and, in some cases, they just go to Europe, notes an analyst of African and Eurasian Affairs for the Jamestown Foundation, Jacob Zenn.

That is why the anti-terror efforts must be a struggle that countries embark on together. Russia has recently been showing its readiness to join hands with its neighbors for the common good of all the states, which has motivated some European politicians to rethink the stance they’ve been taking against Moscow.

Jean Périer is an independent researcher and analyst and a renowned expert on the Near and Middle East, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook.” 
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4 Responses to "NEO – How come Central Asian States have become a Breeding ground for Terrorism"

  1. Andrew_Bukanov(Russia)  April 28, 2017 at 4:11 am

    When it was USSR, Central Asia was under control. Now these former USSR republics have low level of life and economy and radical ideas immerse like seeds in good soil – in the minds of the youth, that didn’t see USSR times, life and values. They even don’t speak Russian.

  2. JohnZ  April 26, 2017 at 6:54 am

    The true cost of the creation of the state of Israel is now becoming fully realized. That it has subverted the governments of Europe and the U.S. into doing its bidding for a greater israel has helped create this monster.
    The people of Europe are paying for the zionist wet dream of a greater israel and the people of such nations as Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, Libya and Somalia are on the chopping block already. Who’s next is not just the name of an album by the Who but in reference to which nation in the middle east will be next for liberation.
    And it doesn’t help when we have a government that has declared war on its own people.
    With a madman in the White House along with other equally as deranged ie: Mattis, Kushner and Sessions, not to mention the ravings and rantings of Halley, I fear the worst.
    As usual Jim Dean comes up with another winner. Something you will not see in the kept press.

  3. SouthThunder230  April 25, 2017 at 11:23 pm

    RichardD you blow my simple mind up in one sentence. Nearly every word packs a punch. But it sounds like you are saying that, the US’s priority is to advance Israel’s agenda, as the US government is comprised of zioncons and neolibs who swear allegiance to Israel

  4. RichardD  April 25, 2017 at 5:02 pm

    I think that the state sponsored terrorism as war on the cheap is due in part to the US ability to wage regime change wars and install replacement governments to advance it’s global hegemony drive through large scale occupation being significantly decreased from the costs of empire over reach. It simply can’t afford the costs of major military engagements and occupations after so many failures in the post WW2 era.

    So the US is trying to advance it’s agenda through state sponsored terrorism and the threat of using it against nations that don’t want to comply to coerce them into compliance.This is being offset by the ascendancy of the SCO as an alternative to many governments who want to advance their economies without getting involved with partnering with the US and it’s allies in a manner that doesn’t advance their national interests in the way that they want to progress.

    Israel and US Ziocons are a big part of the problem. They don’t care about US hegemony. Being surrounded by failed states that don’t pose a threat to their colonization project in Palestine is considered success from their perspective. And there’s no doubt that they’re directly involved in fomenting regional strife using terrorism and military aggression to prevent the development of strong neighbors that could put a brake on their activity.

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