A newly released ISIS video shows another fighter calling for jihad on American soil. This fighter happens to be different from others we’ve seen so far though, he’s been trained by American forces and on American soil.
The fighter, a former police commander from Tajikistan named Col. Gulmorod Khalimov, is seen wearing the traditions ISIS uniform of a black combat clothes, a bandolier of ammunition, and a rifle. However, he happens to be a sniper who was trained in America on at least three occasions. According to the State Department, “From 2003-2014 Colonel Khalimov participated in five counterterrorism training courses in the United States and in Tajikistan, through the Department of State’s Diplomatic Security/Anti-Terrorism Assistance program.”
The program teaches men like Khalimov how to effectively use counterterrorism tactics groups like ISIS. The training teaches them things like leadership, crisis response, and tactical management. The training is open to fighters from countries allied with the U.S. against the growing terror threats.
Khalimov claims it was that training that led to the decision to join ISIS. In the released video he explains his feelings toward the U.S.
“‘Listen, you American pigs: I’ve been to America three times. I saw how you train soldiers to kill Muslims,’ he says in Russian. ‘You taught your soldiers how to surround and attack, in order to exterminate Islam and Muslims.’
Then, in the most chilling part of the 10-minute video, he looks directly into the camera and says, ‘God willing, we will find your towns, we will come to your homes, and we will kill you.'”
The State Department claims the real danger of a fighter like Khalimov is the knowledge of counterterror tactics he brings to the ISIS cause. With his knowledge he will be able to help them plan attacks with insight toward how coalitions forces will react.
Another possibly more dangerous aspect of recruiting a high-profile fighter like Khalimov will be his recruiting value. Khalimov speaks Russian and should be able to help ISIS gain much-needed recruits in the Eurasian region.