Narrator of ISIS Videos Flown to U.S. To Face Terrorism Charge

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Even though Mr. Khalifa played down his contributions to the Islamic Point out in the interview, prosecutors and the F.B.I. manufactured distinct he was a “prominent figure” in the Islamic Point out media unit, which he joined in April 2014. An F.B.I. agent described him as “essential” simply because of his fluency in Arabic and English and mentioned he was in charge of the Islamic State’s “English Media Segment,” in accordance to the prison criticism

Prosecutors said that he assisted in the translation and narration of roughly 15 films that ended up made and dispersed by the Islamic State. Two of the most “influential and exceedingly violent” propaganda videos, prosecutors mentioned, ended up termed “Flames of War: Preventing Has Just Begun” and “Flames of War II: Until finally the Final Hour.” The initial was distributed in September 2014 and the next in November 2017.

In accordance to courtroom documents, Mr. Khalifa was not just a propagandist but engaged in preventing. In the days before his seize by the Syrian Democratic Forces, he threw “grenades versus opposing combatants,” prosecutors said.

F.B.I. agents interviewed Mr. Khalifa in March 2019, just months after he was captured. He claimed he was inspired to travel to Syria soon after seeing films of the Syrian authorities and listening to lectures of Anwar al-Awlaki, Al Qaeda’s leading voice in English, who was killed a long time before in a drone strike.

In an August 2013 e mail the F.B.I. received, Mr. Khalifa disclosed to a shut relative that he had gone to Syria, and not Egypt as the relative had been led to feel, to struggle. “I arrived right here to sign up for the mujahideen fighting towards Bashar and the Syrian military,” he wrote.

The F.B.I. explained that Mr. Khalifa flew to Turkey and then used a smuggler to enter Syria. He joined a battalion led by Omar al-Shishani, a Georgian militant. He gained military teaching and participated in combating against Syrian govt forces in the Aleppo countryside. In about November 2013, he joined the Islamic State, swearing allegiance to its chief, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Although a member of the Islamic Condition, he was known as “Abu Ridwan al-Kanadi” and “Abu Muthanna al-Muhajir.,“ the F.B.I. explained.

Mr. Khalifa believed he would be sent to an Islamic State coaching camp but instead he was recruited to join the media unit. The F.B.I. mentioned Mr. Khalifa’s recruitment into the media device would mark an virtually five-calendar year period of time in which he would become “a leading determine in ISIS’s English-language propaganda generation and distribution functions.”