Is the sister lying, or did one of the Paris jihadists evade even his own family?
On Friday, CNN interviewed the sister of Samy Amimour, one of the jihadists who massacred 89 people at the Bataclan Theatre and injured dozens more. The sister painted the now familiar picture of Amimour as a sweet kid growing up. However, she noted that as a young adult he started spending increasing amounts of time on the internet, that people started coming around to their house urging him to come to mosque more often, and that eventually he started to attend a mosque that preached radical ideas.
Then, two years ago, he traveled to Syria.
The sister said all contact with him after he left France was normal, and there was never any hint that he was poised to become a mass murderer. However, she also stated that their father traveled to Syria to try to bring his son home. To no avail.
But the sister’s account is suspect. On the face of it, it’s bizarre. Your brother starts attending a radical mosque; leaves France for Syria, compelling a parent to try to retrieve him; and nothing seems suspicious? In addition, per the U.K. edition of the International Business Times, in 2012 Amimour tried to travel to Yemen but was stopped by the authorities. That same year he was under investigation for terrorism conspiracy and was placed under judicial supervision. The following year Interpol issued an international arrest warrant for him.
It seems a stretch to think the family would be unaware of this. But if they were, it serves as proof positive that it’s impossible to tell who will morph into a jihadist, who won’t, and how such Quran-inspired killers can fly under the radar of even their own families. (I don’t think that’s what happened here, but it’s what the sister is suggesting.)
This transformation from a seemingly normal person into a solider for Allah is a critical reason we should not be importing Muslims. Too many turn to terror. And there’s no way to know who will do so. Or when.
Some may argue that there are always madmen in society who commit heinous acts of violence. And that’s true. But an important distinction between such people and jihadists is that the former group comprises of insane deviants, while jihadists are actually devout.
Hat tip: The Right Scoop