It’s been happening in Great Britain too! Somalis, former asylees, have gone to Somalia for terrorist training and British intelligence thinks they are now returning to the UK. Regular readers of RRW know that we have been on the story of American Somalis leaving for Africa since the story first broke in the media in November (here). The great fear among our intelligence people is that they will in fact return to the US with their newfound skills.
From the Times today:
Dozens of Islamic extremists have returned to Britain from terror training camps in Somalia, the British security services believe.
Intelligence analysts are worried that they may attempt to launch attacks in this country or use the kudos from having trained and fought in Somalia to try to attract new recruits. The issue was raised by Jonathan Evans, the head of MI5, in his first interview last month.
In the US, the outgoing head of the CIA, Michael Hayden, has said that Ethiopia’s invasion of Somalia in late 2006 “catalysed” expatriate Somalis around the world.
An investigation for Channel 4 News, to be broadcast tonight, also reveals that a suicide bomber who grew up in Ealing is thought to have blown himself up in an attack in Somalia that killed more than 20 soldiers.
Tiny UK has 250,000 Somalis! I don’t know exactly what our Somali population is but the State Department resettled 80,000 over 25 years, so factor in huge families and our numbers must be greater.
The incident (suicide bombing) is the first reported case involving a Somali based in Britain and will add to pressure on Scotland Yard and the Home Office to tackle the problem within the Somali community, which, at about 250,000 people, is the biggest in Europe.
They don’t know exactly how many are leaving 50, 60, 70? At one point we had a report that 40 have left the US, but now our intelligence people are saying 20, but in reality, they don’t know.
Peter Neumann, a terrorism expert who runs the Centre for the Study of Radicalisation at King’s College London, told Channel 4 News: “The numbers I hear [going from Britain to Somalia] are 50, 60 or 70, but in reality we don’t know. You don’t need big numbers for terrorism. Somalia will never become another Pakistan, but that does not mean it is not a threat.”
Most Somalis in Britain entered the country as asylum-seekers within the past 20 years. They include Yasin Omar and Ramzi Mohammed, two of the four men convicted of the botched bombing of the London Underground on July 21, 2005.
Read the rest of the article and learn more about Britain’s first homegrown Somali suicide bomber.