“Flow of terrorist recruits increasing: Westerners attending camps in Pakistan and Afghanistan despite successful U.S. strikes,” by Craig Whitlock for the Washington Post, October 19 (thanks to all who sent this in):
BERLIN — Midway through a propaganda video released last month by a group calling itself the German Taliban, a surprise guest made an appearance: a cleanshaven, muscular gunman sporting the alias Abu Ibrahim the American.
The gunman did not speak but wore military fatigues and waved his rifle as subtitles identified him as an American. The video contained a stream of threats against Germany if it did not withdraw its troops from the NATO-led mission in Afghanistan. Although the American’s part in the film lasted only a few seconds, it has alarmed German and U.S. intelligence officials, who are still puzzling over his background, his real identity and how he became involved with the terrorist group.
U.S. and European counterterrorism officials say a rising number of Western recruits — including Americans — are traveling to Afghanistan and Pakistan to attend paramilitary training camps. The flow of recruits has continued unabated, officials said, in spite of an intensified campaign over the past year by the CIA to eliminate al-Qaeda and Taliban commanders in drone missile attacks.
Since January, at least 30 recruits from Germany have traveled to Pakistan for training, according to German security sources. About 10 people — not necessarily the same individuals — have returned to Germany this year, fueling concerns that fresh plots are in the works against European targets….