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  • James Foley’s killing turns spotlight on European jihadists

    International Business Times - 08/25/2014

    The beheading of James Foley by a man whom UK intelligence agencies are close to identifying as a British national didn’t just reveal the brutality of how ISIS operates. It raised questions about why a large number of young Muslim men from across Europe have joined the ranks of the Sunni militant group.

    Thousands of radicalized Muslims that have joined ISIS from all across Europe, from the United Kingdom to the cities and towns of Sweden, France and Belgium. Many get radicalized after finding themselves on the fringes of society, ostracized from the political process and, crucially, according to one expert, bored and unemployed. About one young European in five is unemployed according to official statistics, a percentage that rises significantly for ethnic minorities.

    “Generally, unemployment does predict people turning to terrorism more than other indicators, not because the perpetrators are impoverished but because they have nothing to do, because they are looking for purpose in life,” said Max Abrahms, a terrorism expert at Northeastern University.

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