Eye on Extremism: October 10, 2023

NBC: Music Festival Revelers In The Israeli Desert Were Massacred By Hamas Militants

“As thousands of people danced at a music festival in an Israeli desert area in the early hours of Saturday, Hamas militants from Gaza descended upon the revelry. Videos show young Israelis dancing to trance music under a giant Buddha statue and prayer flags around dawn — right around when festivalgoer Eliav Klein said he saw rockets launched from Gaza, startling everyone. A total of 260 people were killed at the event, according to a spokesperson for ZAKA, an Israeli nongovernmental rescue and recovery organization. Klein said, “There was a traffic jam of cars trying to escape.” Then gunshots rang out. Amid the chaos, Klein and hundreds of young people began to run on the dry brown earth, out of breath and clutching bags, desperate to reach safety. The Supernova festival, held in the Negev region, had been planned for weeks. “Everyone just started running in all directions. Nobody knew where to go,” Klein said. He said he believed festivalgoers totaled in the thousands.”

Politico: Graphic Videos Of Hamas Attacks Spread On X

“Videos and images of mass shootings, kidnapped civilians and soldiers and other violence linked with Hamas' attack on Israel are being widely shared on X, formerly known as Twitter, in violation of the company's own rules against inciting violence. POLITICO's review of Elon Musk's social media platform in the wake of Hamas' attacks, which began on October 7, discovered scores of videos that allegedly showed militants murdering civilians and Israeli soldiers; viral hashtags associated with the ongoing violence that praised Hamas' activities; and social media posts that included graphic pictures of those killed and antisemitic hate speech. Such extremist material was also accessible on other social media platforms, most notably on Telegram. But the level at which the terrorist-related content was circulated on X was significantly higher compared with others, according to analysis by POLITICO and two outside researchers who independently reviewed the tech companies' response to the Middle East crisis.”

United States

The Daily Beast: ‘Violence-Ready’ Militia Group Says Jan. 6’ers Are Idiots

“…These so-called “Active Clubs” are now recruiting across the United States, according to Alexander Ritzmann, a Berlin-based senior adviser who co-authored the report “Hiding in Plain Sight–The Transnational Right-Wing Extremist Active Club Network,” which was released last month and highlighted in Rolling Stone. The clubs advertise as sporting groups designated for white-only men, but their real objective, Ritzmann tells The New Abnormal, “is to essentially train a white supremacist militia.”

Reuters: U.S. Rushing Air Defenses, Munitions To Israel, Defense Official Says

“The U.S. military is "surging" fresh supplies of air defenses, munitions and other security assistance to Israel to help it respond to an unprecedented weekend attack by Hamas, a senior U.S. defense official said on Monday. "Planes have already taken off," the U.S. official said, speaking on condition of anonymity to Pentagon reporters. "We are surging support to Israel... We remain in constant ongoing contact with our counterparts in Israel to determine and then support their most urgent requirements." The United States has not yet detailed the extent of Israel's requests for security assistance. But the U.S. defense official said Washington was contacting the defense industry to expedite pending Israeli orders, and looking at the U.S. military's own stockpiles to help fill Israeli gaps. The official also appeared to dismiss concerns that the United States might struggle to supply Israel at the same time that it funnels weaponry to Ukraine. "We are able to continue our support both to Ukraine, to Israel, and maintain our own global readiness," the official said. Palestinian Islamist group Hamas launched a surprise attack on Israel on Saturday, killing hundreds of Israelis and seizing dozens of hostages. The attack led Israel to declare war, and the spiraling violence threatens to start a major new war in the Middle East.”


Reuters: Turkey Says It Killed 58 Kurdish Militants In Northern Syria

“Turkish forces have killed 58 Kurdish militants in northern Syria in overnight attacks on militant targets, the Defence Ministry said on Saturday, as conflict in the region escalated nearly a week after a bomb attack in Ankara. Turkey this week said all targets belonging to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) militia and the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia were "legitimate targets" for its forces, after the PKK claimed responsibility for Sunday's bombing in Ankara which wounded two police officers and killed the two attackers. Turkey said the attackers came from Syria. The U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) - a coalition of rebel groups spearheaded by the YPG militia - denied this. Since the bomb attack, Ankara has launched a barrage of air strikes and ground-based attacks against militant targets in northern Syria and Iraq, while ramping up security operations at home. "Targets belonging to PKK/YPG terrorists in northern Syria's Euphrates Shield, Olive Branch, and Peace Spring operation areas were hit strongly all night long," the ministry said, referring to regions where Turkey has previously mounted incursions.”


The Independent: Taliban Draw Closer To China And Say They Will Protect Chinese Citizens In Afghanistan As ‘Our Own’

“The Taliban have strongly vowed to protect citizens from China against terrorist threats on their soil, the latest sign of a growing closeness between the two countries that has alarmed international observers. China was the first major world power to restore its embassy in Kabul after the Islamist group’s 2021 takeover of Afghanistan, and has been ramping up its trade and infrastructure links with the Taliban regime. After several attacks in recent months targeting Chinese workers in Afghanistan, the Taliban’s de facto foreign minister, Amir Khan Muttaqi, said the Islamist group will not tolerate such activities. “We have done a lot of work to combat terrorism and we take security threats against China like a challenge to our own,” the minister told the Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi during talks in the Tibetan city of Nyingchi on Thursday. “We will not allow any activities that would harm [the] security and stability of China to happen in Afghanistan.” Mr Muttaqi also offered an “effective guarantee” on the safety of Chinese nationals in Afghanistan but did not share more details.”

Middle East

Reuters: Israel Kills Three Lebanon Militants; Israeli Officer Killed In Raid

“Israeli shelling on Lebanon killed at least three Hezbollah militants on Monday, and Israel said one of its officers was killed during an earlier cross-border raid claimed by Palestinians in Lebanon. The cross-border violence marked a significant expansion of a conflict between Israel and Palestinian militants in Gaza to the Israeli-Lebanese border further north.  Iran-backed Hezbollah and Israel fought a brutal month-long war in 2006. Hezbollah said in consecutive statements that three of its members had been killed in Israel's "aggression" on southern Lebanon on Monday afternoon. Two Lebanese security sources told Reuters two more Hezbollah members were killed. Israel shelled southern Lebanon after a cross-border raid claimed by the Palestinian Islamic Jihad group. The Israeli army said soldiers backed by helicopters killed at least two gunmen who crossed the frontier. The army later said that a deputy commander, Lieutenant Colonel Alim Abdullah, was killed during the encounter. It did not provide details. Hezbollah and Israel have traded sporadic fire over the border since 2006 while avoiding a major conflict. They exchanged artillery and rocket fire on Sunday.”

Associated Press: Israel Pounds Downtown Gaza City, Threatening Punishing Retaliation For Weekend Attack

“Israel pounded downtown Gaza City with relentless bombardments Tuesday and further expanded a massive mobilization of reservists as it vowed a retaliation that would “reverberate ... for generations” against the Hamas militant group for its surprise weekend attack. The war — which began after Hamas militants stormed into Israel on Saturday, bringing gunbattles to its streets for the first time in decades — has already claimed at least 1,600 lives. It is only expected to escalate from here, with questions over whether Israel will launch a ground invasion and Hamas threatening to kill captured Israelis if strikes targeted civilians without warning. Israel said that Hamas and other militant groups in Gaza are also holding more than 150 soldiers and civilians hostage. Israel’s military said Tuesday morning that it had regained effective control over its south and the border, breached over the weekend in an attack that caught its vaunted military and intelligence apparatus completely off guard. The bodies of roughly 1,500 Hamas militants, meanwhile, were found on Israeli territory, the military said. It wasn’t immediately clear whether those numbers overlapped with deaths previously reported by Palestinian authorities.”

United Kingdom

The Spectator: Why Hasn’t The UK Outlawed The IRGC?

“As the scale and barbarity of the Hamas terrorist assault on Israel begins to unfold, to no-one’s surprise Iran has leant its formal support to the insurgents. While thousands of rockets rain down on Israeli civilians and and Iran’s proxies pull men women and children out of their homes — murdering them in the streets — it’s worth remembering that the United Kingdom still has not proscribed that regime’s state terror exporters, the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps. Whether it is terror funding and training to Hamas in Gaza, Hezbollah in Lebanon or Palestinian Islamic Jihad in the occupied territories, the IRGC is inextricably linked to today’s butchery.”


Reuters: Niger Junta Says French Withdrawal Will Begin With 400 Soldiers In Southwest

“Niger's junta said late on Thursday that 400 French soldiers based in the southwestern town of Ouallam would be the first to pack up in a withdrawal that is dealing a further blow to France's influence in the conflict-hit Sahel region. The departure of French forces from Niger has been a key demand of the military officers who seized power in July - one of a series of recent coups in West Africa's Sahel that has drastically reshaped its decade-long battle with insurgents linked to al Qaeda and Islamic State. France initially resisted, refusing to accept the legitimacy of the junta. But last month President Emmanuel Macron decided to end military cooperation with Niger and pull out all 1,500 French troops, leaving a gaping hole in Western efforts to counter the insurgency The town of Ouallam is on the front line of Niger's security crisis, and holds thousands of people displaced from surrounding villages after years of attacks by armed groups. "The 400 French soldiers based in Ouallam will be the first to pack up and go," the junta said in a statement read out on national radio.”


Reuters: Gaza Conflict Casts Shadow Over Vatican Holocaust Conference

“The conflict in Gaza cast a shadow on Monday over a major conference on the Vatican and the Holocaust, with one participant calling the carnage the worst slaughter of civilian Jews in one day since then. The conference was organised after the opening in 2020 of Vatican archives of the pontificate of Pius XII, which led to the discovery of a letter showing that he knew details about the Nazi attempt to exterminate Jews in the Holocaust as early as 1942. Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican secretary of state, changed his prepared opening comments to mention the "terrible and despicable attack" against "Israeli brothers and sisters". Parolin said: "Unfortunately, violence, terrorism, barbarism and extremism undermine the legitimate aspirations of Palestinians and Israelis." Riccardo Di Segni, the chief rabbi of Rome, said: "My thoughts are more there than here." Two speakers from Israel's Yad Vashem Holocaust Remembrance Center cancelled their appearances at the three-day conference, which is bringing together historians and theologians to address Jewish-Christian relations after the opening of the archives. Professor Deborah E. Lipstadt, the U.S. Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism, and who won a landmark case in London against Holocaust denier David Irving in 1996, sat in the front row.”


The Times Of India: Left-Wing Extremism Will Be Finished In 2 Years: Union Home Minister Amit Shah

“Stating that Left-wing extremism was in its last phase and shall be “completely uprooted in the next two years”, home minister Amit Shah on Friday said the priorities of the Narendra Modi government include deployment of Central forces to counter Maoists, rationalisation of development and setting up security camps in the “vacuum” areas. ‘Vacuum areas’ refer to ‘core’ Maoist strongholds, mostly in thickly-forested areas, where the security or administrative machinery had not been able to make any inroads. The counter-Naxal forces, as part of a strategy, are now moving deeper into such areas, pushing back Left-wing extremists and setting up security camps there to facilitate an administrative and development push. Addressing a meeting here to review the Left-wing extremism situation and discuss fine-tuning of strategy, Shah said the ‘vaccum’ areas had been shrinking since 2019, with 195 camps of Central armed police forces (CAPFs) established and 44 more on the anvil. He emphasised on the need to maintain constant surveillance in the areas liberated from Left-wing extremists’ hold, to rule out any revival of the problem there. Shah asked counter-Naxal forces to ensure that the Maoists, after being eliminated from what were once their pocket boroughs, do not take shelter in the neighbouring states.”


Washington Examiner: Israel War: How Hamas Terrorists Used Little-Known Social Media Platform To Spread Messages

“…Josh Lipowsky, research analyst for the Counter Extremism Project, told the Washington Examiner that much of what Hamas posts on the platform is available on its website but that when its website is down, it provides it the ability to continue its "propaganda push." “Hamas utilizes Telegram channels in Arabic and English to further spread its propaganda through distribution of the group’s press releases and statements to thousands of subscribers to those channels. Much of what appears on the channels is taken directly from Hamas’s website, offering another direct method of pushing out its releases to followers who, given the nature of Telegram, have specifically sought out the group," Lipowsky said. "As of earlier this afternoon, Hamas’s main website, both the Arabic and English versions, is down, hindering Hamas’s ability to push out its message at a time it is trying to control the narrative of its vicious attack," he added. "The Telegram channels provide Hamas with redundancies to continue their propaganda push across platforms.”

Wired: White Supremacist Active Clubs Are Breeding On Telegram

“…By August, research conducted by Alexander Ritzmann for the Counter Extremism Project (CEP), a nonprofit that tracks extremist groups, found that there were 46 clubs operating in 34 different states—a 50 percent increase in the number of clubs and a 100 percent increase in the geographical spread in the space of just five months.”

Associated Press: A Top Israeli General Was Not Kidnapped By Hamas, Contrary To Widespread Online Claim

“Palestinian resistance fighters capture Israeli commander Nimrod Aloni along with dozens of other Israeli soldiers as the resistance fighters attacked neighbouring occupied towns and Israeli check posts near Gaza,” stated one Instagram post that had received more than 43,000 likes as of Monday. A similar post on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, read: “Wild: Israeli Commander Nimrod Aloni captured. Hamas must have gotten super deep into Israel AND BACK to do this. What a massive intelligence failure.” But Aloni, a top general, is not in the hands of Hamas, according to Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari, the IDF’s chief military spokesman. Hagari told reporters on Saturday that claims Aloni was captured are “not true.” Aloni clearly appears 10 seconds into a video of top IDF officials discussing the latest Israel-Hamas war on Sunday, which was posted to the Israeli military’s official YouTube channel. Sunday’s date can be seen on a slide in the background. The IDF also published still images from the meeting on X, the last of which shows Aloni on the far left.”

Daily Dose

Extremists: Their Words. Their Actions.


On May 8, 2019, Taliban insurgents detonated an explosive-laden vehicle and then broke into American NGO Counterpart International’s offices in Kabul. At least seven people were killed and 24 were injured.

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