Rascism may not allow ISIS team up with Boko Haram – US Intelligence

Found this report on NBC News. US Intelligence report
suggests that racism will keep ISIS operating in Northern
Africa from teaming up with Boko Haram.Amen! Read
report below…
Long before ISIS militants beheaded Christians on a
Libyan beach last week, Nigeria’s Boko Haram was
carrying out similar atrocities 1,500 miles to the south.
Now that ISIS is operating in northern Africa, will the
Syria-based organization join forces with the continent’s
largest Islamist terror group? Maybe not, say U.S.
intelligence officials, and they suggest one obstacle is
racism.
The Arab world is incredibly racist,” explained a U.S.
intelligence official. “They don’t see black Africans as
equivalent to them.”
ISIS may show “affinity” with Boko Haram, said the official,
“but they stop short of allegiance.” Moreover, said the
official, while Boko Haram has in the past year released
videos to show “affiliation” with groups like ISIS, there’s no
evidence of either group sending members to fight with the
other. And while Boko Haram has praised ISIS, and shown
the ISIS flag in videos, ISIS has not reciprocated.
“There are still questions of the ISIS view of Boko Haram
and Nigeria,” said the official. “But Boko Haram does not
operate in sync with ISIS. The caliphates are separate.”
There was concern last October when Boko Haram declared
its caliphate that the two might team up, but there’s no
indication that’s happening, said the official.
The groups differ in many ways. Both use social media, but
the ISIS campaign is much more sophisticated – using more
than 20 languages — and attempts to communicate the
Islamic rationale for its operations. Boko Haram posts
increasingly slick videos on the web, like one released
Tuesday that threatens the leaders of Cameroon, Benin and
Chad, but its prime recruiting tool is older and simpler than
social media. “Boko Haram,” said one official, “uses fear.”
The governance of their respective caliphates also differs.
ISIS attempts to replace the bureaucracies it found in
conquered territories with its own, while Boko Haram has
been satisfied simply taking over villages and cities and
establishing Sharia courts that mete out rough justice.
ISIS has more “hardcore” soldiers than Boko Haram —
about 26,000 to 31,000 compared to 4,000 to 6,000. ISIS is
also more attractive to foreign fighters, with an estimated
2,700 Westerners having fought for the group. Intelligence
officials say that other than a few fighters who’ve crossed
the border into Nigeria from Cameroon, Chad and Niger,
the numbers of foreign fighters in Boko Haram are
negligible. There’s no evidence, they say, of any North
Americans or Europeans fighting in Nigeria.
But even if there is no link beyond shared values between
the groups, ISIS may be a role model for Boko Haram, said
Michael Sheehan, chairman of the Countering Terrorism
Center at West Point. He said he’s “not sure” Boko Haram
would’ve “gone the caliphate route” if ISIS hadn’t done so
first.
“Each of them has been successful, reinforcing their own
optimism, and that’s not insignificant,” said Sheehan.
And there is little difference in the level of violence
perpetrated by the groups. An intelligence official told NBC
News that many of the attacks and atrocities carried out by
the Nigerian group have not been publicly reported
publicly.
The two groups also share a crucial asset: a charismatic
leader. Intelligence officials say that just as Abu Bakr al-
Baghdadi’s persona is central to ISIS, Abubakar Shekau’s
“fiery persona” has made him a strong commander-in-chief
of Boko Haram — one who would be difficult to replace.
“Everything starts with Shekau,” said an intelligence official.
“There doesn’t appear to be a charismatic leader below
him.” Officials note that in videos made since the
announcement of the caliphate, likeTuesday’s, Shekau has
presented himself less as a militant and more as a leader.

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