ISIS wants to use Pak N-bomb on US

23 May 2015


With ''billions of dollars'' in its coffers and emboldened by the recent victories in Ramadi in Iraq and the Syrian Palmyra, the Islamic State (IS) militants are looking to acquire a nuclear device from Pakistan for carrying out a spectacular attack on the United States.

The ISIS claimed this in an article in the latest issue of its propaganda magazine, Dabiq, in an article titled The Perfect Storm, purportedly written by John Cantlie, a British correspondent who was kidnapped by militants in Syria in November 2012.

The article claims global status for the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria and support from the divergent Islamic militant groups in Africa, the Middle East and Asia but, to be a real force, it would need nuclear weapons.

Several terror groups such as Al Qaeda and Boko Haram have already pledged allegiance to the ISIS, which is already using sophisticated weapons like tanks, rocket launchers, missile systems and anti-aircraft systems seized in battles with government forces in Syria and Iraq.

Acquisition of a nuclear device would be the logical next step.

The article, which the group attributes to the British hostage John Cantlie, outlines a ''hypothetical operation'' to move the nuclear weapon from Pakistan to IS fighters who could use it to mount an attack on the US.

The article suggests that the ISIS has emerged as "the most explosive Islamic 'group' in the modern world" and is evolving into "the most explosive Islamic movement the modern world has ever seen" in a span of less than twelve months.

ISIS claims it could buy its first nuclear weapon from Pakistan within 12 months.

The finances of the ISIS, however, are impossible to verify although some estimates have put it around $2billion.

The terror group regularly uses photojournalist Cantlie in its propaganda and has used him in a number of videos, including a YouTube series called `Lend Me Your Ears'. He has been held hostage by ISIS for more than two years.

The Perfect Storm describes the aligning of militant Islamist groups such as Boko Haram, Al Qaeda, etc, with the ISIS across the Middle East, Africa and Asia to create an invincible global force.

"Let me throw a hypothetical operation onto the table," the article continues. "The Islamic State has billions of dollars in the bank, so they call on their wilayah in Pakistan to purchase a nuclear device through weapons dealers with links to corrupt officials in the region."

It admits that such a scenario is "far-fetched" but warns: "It's the sum of all fears for Western intelligence agencies and it's infinitely more possible today than it was just one year ago.

"And if not a nuke, what about a few thousand tons of ammonium nitrate explosive? That's easy enough to make."

An attack launched by ISIS against America would ridicule "the attacks of the past".

"They'll be looking to do something big, something that would make any past operation look like a squirrel shoot, and the more groups that pledge allegiance the more possible it becomes to pull off something truly epic.

"Remember, all of this has happened in less than a year. How more dangerous will be the lines of communication and supply a year on from today?"

While the talk of ISIS acquiring such a device is certainly hyperbole, ISIS is indeed a well funded group having secured a number of oilfields in Syria and Iraq.

The group sells artifacts looted from historic areas seized during its insurgency for huge sums. It also imposes taxes on civilians trapped in its self-declared caliphate, and uses other methods of extortion.

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