• 18-year-old was headed to Syria to fight against Assad regime
By Keith Johnson
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) recently nabbed a hapless Aurora, Illinois teenager who allegedly planned to join a Syrian resistance group that just so happens to receive millions of dollars in military aid from American taxpayers. Apparently, the United States government is setting out to prove that they really can have their cake and eat it too. At the same time they’re funding terrorist activities abroad, they’re busting people here at home for volunteering to lend a helping hand.
On April 19, 18-year-old Abdella Ahmed Tounisi was arrested at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport just before he was about to board a plane for Turkey. Authorities claim that Tounisi’s final destination was Syria, where he hoped to train with the Jabhat al-Nusrah terrorist organization, described as an “alias for al-Qaida in Iraq,” according to a complaint filed in U.S. District Court.
Aside from the fact that Jabhat al-Nusrah is also a covert U.S. ally in the fight against the Syrian regime, another particularly disturbing aspect about Tounisi’s case is that his aspirations to join the terrorist group were nurtured by the same federal agency credited for his capture. In the days leading up to Tounisi’s arrest, the FBI put up a bogus Jabhat al-Nusrah website for the express purpose of luring wannabe “freedom fighters” into joining up. According to AP, “It had the trappings of an actual extremist website: Photos of gun-toting fighters and a flowery exhortation to, ‘Come and join your lion brothers … fighting under the true banner of Islam.’”
Those words and images proved to be a substantial source of inspiration for the impressionable youth. As the Chicago Tribune reports: “On March 28, Tounisi made contact with a person he believed to be a recruiter for Jabhat al-Nusrah but who was really an undercover FBI agent, the complaint says. After several emails, Tounisi allegedly wrote that he planned to get to Syria through Turkey.
“On April 10, Tounisi purchased an airplane ticket to Istanbul and was given instructions by the undercover agent about how to meet up with ‘brothers’ from Jabhat al-Nusrah who would take Tounisi to a training camp in Syria, officials said.”
Tousini has now been charged with attempting to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization and faces up to 15 years in federal prison if convicted.
“This is particularly ironic because U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has just announced an additional $123 million in military aid that is headed directly to this very same foreign terrorist organization,” wrote geopolitical researcher Tony Cartalucci. “And unlike Tounisi, Kerry and his collaborators are not being charged with attempting to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization.”
Toppling the Syrian regime is one of the U.S. government’s main foreign policy objectives. And using foreign terrorists as their proxy has been standard operating procedure for some time now. Even The New York Times has recently admitted that “[n]owhere in rebel-controlled Syria is there a secular fighting force to speak of…Even the Supreme Military Council, the umbrella rebel organization whose formation the West had hoped would sideline radical groups, is stocked with commanders who want to infuse Islamic law into a future Syrian government…Among the most extreme groups is the notorious Al Nusra Front, the Qaeda-aligned force declared a terrorist organization by the United States, but other groups share aspects of its Islamist ideology in varying degrees.”
According to Cartalucci: “From the beginning, it was clear to geopolitical analysts that the conflict in Syria was not ‘ pro-democracy” protestors rising up, but rather the fruition of a well-documented conspiracy between the U.S., Israel, and Saudi Arabia to arm and direct sectarian extremists affiliated with Al Qaeda against the Syrian government.”
This kind of collaboration goes back a long way. In fact, Al-Qaeda itself is an outgrowth of the U.S.-backed Mujahideen resistance that fought the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan from 1979 to 1989. In 2005, Reagan-era National Security Agency director William Ellridge Odom admitted that, “terrorism is not an enemy. It is a tactic. Because the United States itself has a long record of supporting terrorists and using terrorist tactics, the slogans of today’s war on terrorism merely make the United States look hypocritical to the rest of the world.”
In the same manner in which the U.S. has earned its bad reputation for funding the very terror groups it claims to be at war with, so too is the FBI becoming notorious for duping the immature and mentally ill into participating in fake terror plots.
One of the more recent examples occurred on February 7, when the FBI arrested 28-year-old Matthew Aaron Llaneza, who supposedly attempted to blow up a Bank of America building with a fake bomb they helped him create. As it turns out, not only did the FBI engineer the entire plot, but, according to court documents, “the one-time window washer suffered from bipolar disease and substance abuse, along with being paranoid that people were out to get him.”
Similarly, in October of 2012, “federal agents convinced a naive 21-year-old Bangladeshi that he was a member of al-Qaeda, giving the alleged entrapment victim fake bombs to blow up the privately owned Federal Reserve Bank of New York before swarming in and arresting him,” wrote Alex Newman for The New American. “In reality, there was no al-Qaeda, there was no threat, there were no bombs, and the only alleged ‘plot’ the FBI ‘foiled’ was the one it hatched with its stooge, Quazi Mohammad Rezwanul Ahsan Nafis.”
Another gullible young dupe, 19-year-old Mohamed Osman Mohamud, was hyped as being the mastermind behind the attempted bombing of a 2010 Christmas tree lighting ceremony in Portland, Oregon. However, once again, it was the FBI that provided the suspect with all the fake explosives and instructions on how to carry out the attack. “An undercover FBI agent even did the driving, with Mr. Mohamud in the passenger seat,” The New York Times reported. “To trigger the bomb the student punched a number into a cellphone and got no boom, only a bust.”