Narrator for ISIS Faces Trial in US

Narrator for ISIS Faces Trial in US

( – A┬ástudy from the RAND corporation warned Western stereotypes about terrorist groups are dangerously ill-conceived. Many believe that Muslim and Arab individuals are more likely to become terrorist recruits, but research suggests that young people from the US are more vulnerable. While organizations conduct many of their operations in the shadows, they also successfully exploit modern media platforms to spread their messages and recruit new members from around the world. The story of Saudi-born Canadian citizen Mohammed Khalifa serves as a perfect example of this phenomenon.

Syrian Democratic Forces captured Khalifa after an extended firefight with ISIS forces in January 2019. The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) announced his transfer to FBI agents in the wake of filing a federal criminal complaint against him, unsealed in the US District Court for Virginia’s Eastern District.

The 24-page complaint alleged Khalifa served as a lead translator for ISIS’s Western propaganda campaigns. Khalifa also reportedly provided English narration for several graphic recruitment videos for the extremist group. Federal prosecutors say Khalifa’s efforts to provide material support to ISIS resulted in an unspecified number of deaths.

Acting US Attorney Raj Parekh noted in the DOJ announcement Khalifa not only promoted ISIS by operating as the terrorist group’s “voice behind the violence,” but he also fought for the group on Syrian battlefields.

Continuing, he said Khalifa’s role translating and narrating for ISIS expanded the group’s reach and “glorified” its “horrific murders and indiscriminate cruelty.”

If prosecutors successfully convict Khalifa, he could face life in prison.

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