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“How American Girls Transformed Into ISIS”
by Prophecy News Watch   
November 14th, 2014

The radicalization of three Denver teens who were stopped short of their goal of jihad in Syria by German authorities was a textbook example of online terror recruitment, according to an Insite Blog report, a project of the SITE Intelligence Group that focuses on extremism from jihadism to white supremacy.

“The three girls from Colorado, with the use of their social media, were transformed within months from loving and caring teenagers into jihadists willing to go off to a faraway, war-stricken land, get married at the age 16 to bear children to IS fighters whom they never met, and lie and steal from the same parents they expressed love only a short while before,” said the report.

“Similarly, thousands of Westerners and hundreds of Americans are undergoing an online radicalization process leading to recruitment to IS [Islamic State].”

Two sisters of Somali descent, ages 15 and 17, and a friend, 16, of Sudanese descent, had watched videos including one by Anwar al-Awlaki, an American who turned into a chief for al-Qaida and was killed in Yemen in 2011, connected with recruiters on Twitter and other media, and changed from music-loving girls worried about homework, playing tennis, swimming and hoping to work in the fashion business.

Report author Rita Katz said the transformation was fairly rapid – within about a year. One of the girls, Katz reported, was known as “Grape,” and went from talking about pride in passing a math test to responding, “Music is [forbidden],” when asked about her favorite tunes.

“IS’s revolutionary approach to social media … brought the jihadi community into the mainstream of the Internet and exponentially increased jihadis’ audience,” Katz reported. “IS uses social media to create what I like to call, for all practical purposes, a wireless caliphate – fighting enemies on the ground as well as on the Web.”

She said Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr, and other sites are used by Islamic State, the Muslim terror army marching across Syria and Iraq, for propaganda.

Especially Twitter.

Katz reported that the three teens from Denver, who stole money from their parents to pay cash for airline tickets en route to their ultimate destination in Syria, combined for nearly 30,000 tweets.

The messages contained a “strong focus on Islam, particularly on marriage and the role of women,” Katz reported.

And a strong rejection of Western culture.

In fact, “Grape,” “after turning into ‘a good Muslim,’ elaborated on the important role of lectures online which ‘helped’ her ‘become closer to Allah,’” Katz reported.

One such message was, “I’m not near being the ideal perfect Muslim but I try my best, you should try learning more about Islam and some youtube videos like lecture helped me become closer to Allah and learn more Allahmdulilah.”

The Denver Post reported that German authorities stopped the three girls while they were en route to Syria and had stopped in Frankfurt.

They later were escorted back to the U.S.

“The process they underwent – from use of social media, radicalization, recruitment online, even through the actual travel route to join the Islamic State – all follow the exact same pattern shared by several hundred Westerners,” wrote Katz.

The Post said the father of the Sudanese girls spoke to the newspaper on condition of anonymity, and described the surge of interest in Islam that his daughter reflected. School officials in the Cherry Creek District told the paper the same.

“What it really demonstrates is the tremendous power of social media,” Jonathan Adelman, a professor at the University of Denver’s Josef Korbel School of International Studies, told the Post. “They are out there on Facebook. They are out there on Twitter. They are reaching out without any intermediaries.”

Katz reported the girls were interacting with “Abu Usamah,” an online name for Farah Mohamed Shirdon, a Somali-Canadian recruiter.

He tweeted only months ago, “Hasten to make Hijra my brothers and sisters before the window of opportunity for those in the West closes.”

Hijra signifies a journey to Mecca, and one of the girls responded, “I love my mother but my love for Jihad and my Lord [is] greater,” the report said.

Another time, one response to a video of the beheading of journalist James Foley said, “James Foley was a kafir, died as a kafir. He’s going to hell.”

“In the past months, recruitment efforts of females turned into a massive campaign,” Katz reported. “Carried out primarily by IS females who moved from Europe to Syria, the campaign provides the propaganda ,the communications, and the information on why – and very specifically how – Muslim females of all ages must leave their homes and travel to Syria.”

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