The Sunday Times has an interesting and disturbing story of an Irishman who converted to Islam while in a Saudi jail and has left the UK to become a jihadi. Khalid Kelly, as he is now known, is of course training in Pakistan. Interestingly enough, he’s in the Swat Valley:
After a period underground, Kelly has now re-emerged in Pakistan’s Swat valley, where the army recently drove out the Taliban in a three-month military operation. He travels frequently to Rawalpindi, a garrison city next to the nation’s capital Islamabad, to meet contacts and spread his radical jihadist message.
In a meeting in one of the city’s parks last month he told The Sunday Times that he had a “divine calling” to kill. “I would feel good because you are killing for God. I have practised enough mentally to know that when my time comes I’ll be ready. I pray every night for bravery,” he said.
Kelly said he moved to Pakistan to join the “best of the best” in the jihadist struggle and to work towards replacing the civilian government with an Islamic one. As Islamabad vows to take on Islamic militants, Kelly harbours a dark hope that Pakistan will become like Iraq with “beheadings and kidnappings”.
The fact that an Irishman like Kelly feels comfortable enough to surface in the Swat Valley speaks volumes about the security situation there. The military has claimed the Taliban have been defeated in Swat, even though clashes with the Taliban occur there regularly. And the fact Kelly freely travels to and openly operates in Rawalpindi shows that the spread of radical Islam is going on unchecked in the home of Pakistan’s military.
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