An Ex-Jihadi in the Arctic

I grew up in the far north of Norway, hundreds of kilometers above the Arctic Circle. As you might expect, my research interests and arctic origin do not intersect very often. Last time was back in 2004 when a plane on the way from my home town Narvik to Bodø was nearly brought down by an axe-swinging Algerian Islamist. Last Saturday, however, the local newspaper in the nearby city of Tromsø – where I have spent many a drunken night in my youth – broke a remarkable story (hat tip: Tore Bjørgo). It was about Andrew Ibrahim Wenham, a British-Australian convert to Islam who has been living in Tromsø since 2002. The 46-year old Wenham is a respected leader in the local Muslim community and the founding director of the local Alnor mosque.  He is married to a Norwegian convert from Tromsø and leads a quiet existence. However, as the newspaper Nordlys uncovered, Wenham has a somewhat murky past.

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Guest Post: The Story of Eric Breininger

[Editor’s note: This post was written by Christopher Radler and Behnam Said, who are intelligence analysts based in Hamburg, Germany. For links to the original document, see the comments to the preview post.] On 3 May a message announcing the death of Eric Breininger (b. 3 August 1987) and three of his fellow combatants was posted on several German jihadist websites. Breininger, who travelled to the border region between Pakistan and Afghanistan in the winter 2007, was one of the most infamous German jihadists. From Waziristan Breininger, a.k.a. “Abdul Ghaffar al-Almani”, sent several videotaped messages to the jihadist community in Germany, asking them to join the jihad or at least to support it financially. Since September 2008 the German Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) searched for Breininger, based on his assumed affiliation with a foreign terrorist organization. A day after the announcement of his death, Breininger’s alleged autobiography, entitled Mein

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New Issues of Two Jihadi Journals

Issue 28 of Sada al-Jihad is out.  Articles include, “Hamas Responds Negatively to the Invitation of Shaykh Ayman al-Zawahiri” and “The Intellectual Pollution of the Followers of the Salafi-Jihadi Method.” A new journal, Qadaya Jihadiyya (Jihadi Issues), has also be released.  The production quality is better than most of the Jihadi journals and the articles look interesting.  There is a “Strategic Issues” section, reminding me of Abu `Ubayd al-Qurashi’s column in the Ansar journal.  It has two articles: “The Islamic State of Iraq and Early Signs of American Failure” and “Regional Alliances and the Path of Jihad.”  Another section, “Thoughts of a Mujahid,” has the memoir of someone who attended the al-Faruq training camp. Document (Arabic): 8-8-08-faloja-issue-28-of-sada-al-jihad Document (Arabic): 8-12-08-faloja-issue-1-of-qadaya-jihadiyya

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