ISIS European Fighters, the potential danger

Abdalaziz Alhamza “RBSS”

Still a lot of studies and research centers wonder about the reason of the ISIS efficiency in recruiting people was born and raised in Europe. The answer to this question is not easy because there are multiple reasons, but there are general guidelines:

Failed Integration
Many of those who recruited whether they came to Iraq or Syria or stayed in Europe have immigrant’s origins, especially from the Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia, such as Salah Abdulsalam, one of those who carried out Paris attacks last year and got caught in Belgium. All of those are European citizens; they all were born and studied in Europe, but they always suffered from discrimination. They lived in poor and independent ghettos. They were often treated as thieves, and they suffered a lot of local authorities’ violations, in 2006 a lot of demonstrations started in the French suburbs against killing two Moroccan guys by the police.

This was during the presidential elections. In which Nicola Sarkozy was fighting to be a president and when he asked about these two guys they told him that they were thieves and they were escaping from the police and that made things even more badly. Lately, the French police managed to control the situation after imposing the state of emergency. The absence of any real community initiative left those filled with hatred. ISIS knew exactly how to use this gap, and convinced many to recruit not for Islam but vengeance.


The occurrence of ISIS helped in strengthen the bond between crime and terrorism. Instead of going to mosques, ISIS went to the ghettos and prisons to recruit people with a criminal history. Prisons provide angry young men that were raised on extremism.
Researchers in the International Center of studying extremism and political violence, which is located in London, analyzed the characters of 79 European terrorists from Belgium, Britain, Denmark, France, Germany and Netherlands, all of them either traveled for fighting or involved in terrorist attacks in Europe. 57% of them were in prison before, and 27% of those who were in prison turned into terrorists inside the prison.

Al Qaeda, which ISIS came from, used the World Wide Web to share their leaders’ speech along with some jihadist forums. ISIS, on the other hand, the large number of its fighters recruited through Internet, the terror group continued its work in Internet using videos, blogs and social media they used both English and Russian languages on their blogs and their videos are translated to several languages such as English, French, German, Spanish and Urdu.
The videos produced by the terrorist group Agencies such as Al Furqan and Al-Etesam show the significant shift the group’s structure and capabilities. They produced several high-quality videos called (Saleel Al Sawarim) which showed the group’s humongous capabilities.

The study showed that ISIS fighters are taking advantage of people’s sympathy with them over the Internet and they started attracting people using shiny words and statements knowing that the Saudis entertainment is through the internet and chat websites and social media. This is exactly how ISIS used technology to recruit a lot more fighters.

media activist from the city of Raqqa, student at the Faculty of Law at the University of the Euphrates. Director of the Media Office of Raqqa, founding member of "Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently", founding member of the documentary project of "Sound and Picture". I work in documenting violations committed by Assad's regime and ISIS group and extremist organizations inside the city of Raqqa, as I work in programming, design and visual media. I hold a certificate of coach in digital security, and a certificate of journalist coach, and a certificate in documenting violations against human rights, and a certificate in electronic advocacy. I underwent a training under the supervision of "Cyber-Arabs" in collaboration with the Institute for War and Peace "IWPR", about the management of electronic websites and leadership of advocacy campaigns, and a training of press photography under the supervision of the photojournalist "Peter Hove Olesen".