Talha Asmal from Dewsbruy was identified on Islamic State run social media sites. Asmal is one of 700 young men and women who, according to Britain's security services, have fled the UK for Syria and Iraq to join militant jihadi groups. The Foreign Office believes that as many people as have left, have already returned to Britain — radicalized.
"We would like to state ISIS are not Islam." Family of suicide bomber Talha Asmal say he was exploited by extremists. pic.twitter.com/T0Heqsb3Kr— Darshna Soni (@darshnasoni) June 14, 2015
Social media is fast becoming the tool of choice for terrorists to groom and radicalize young people and share information online.
"Need to sit down with people who write programmes for the Internet". Lord Carlisle enjoying the 21st century there #r4today— Quins Jim (@quinsjim) June 15, 2015
In order to combat the radicalization rhetoric, the UK's former reviewer of terrorism legislation and Liberal Democrat Peer Lord Carlisle, says government ministers should work with some of Britain's best IT brains who "create games on the Internet" to prevent more British school pupils traveling to Iraq and Syria to join Islamic militants.
"The government must sit down with the best brains who, for example, create games on the Internet, who write programs for the Internet, and they must try and produce the same methods to show that the good guys win sometimes. It's hard to counter, but one does have to use the same tools, the same thought processes, that do radicalize people."
According to Lord Carlisle it is essential to "fight fire with the same sort of fire." He believes gamemakers could be used to counter radicalization, effectively using games as a propaganda tool.
— Mohammed Ansar (@MoAnsar) June 15, 2015
Sorry, but no. 'Ordinary Yorkshire lads' don't go out to Iraq & become suicide bombers for ISIS. Stop the fluff. Talha Asmal went to kill.— Ed Husain (@Ed_Husain) June 14, 2015
But as governments and companies work to combat the online radicalization rhetoric, there is a danger that it pushes online groups deeper into cyberspace and into the Dark Net, an encrypted part of the Internet which can only be accessed through a specific web browser.
Islamic State have previously released their very own modification of a game combat simulator, in which the player is an ISIL fighter slaughtering Westerners — a bid to recruit more young men and women. They have used popular video game titles such as Call of Duty and Grand Theft Auto in their propaganda films as well.
Talha Asmal was linked to Islamic State on social media sites and — going by the name of Abu Yusaf al-Britain — he was found to have taken part in the attack in Iraq. A statement from his family said he was "a loving, kind, caring and affable teenager."