18:33 GMT +305 December 2019
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    Allah's Soldiers: ‘Lost, Frustrated, Suicidal, Easily Manipulated Youths’

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    A French journalist is set to release his documentary entitled "Allah's Soldiers" which gives an insight into the "minds of young jihadists", filmed with a hidden camera during six months of his infiltration into a cell of would-be jihadists.

    The journalist, a Muslim using the pseudonym Said Ramzi, carried out an investigation into the preparation of would-be jihadists of a terrorist attack in France, according to the AFP preview of the documentary, which is to be aired in France on Monday.

    Ramzi describes himself as a Muslim "of the same generation as the killers" who carried out the November 13 terror attacks which left 130 people dead in Paris.

    "My goal was to understand what was going on inside their heads," he told AFP.

    "One of the main lessons was that I never saw any Islam in this affair. No will to improve the world. Only lost, frustrated, suicidal, easily manipulated youths," he added.

    "They had the misfortune of being born in the era that the Islamic State exists. It is very sad. They are youngsters who are looking for something and that is what they found."

    Ramzi revealed how he infiltrated the cell.

    It was easy to contact "those preaching jihad" on Facebook. Then, he had to meet the person presented as the "emir" of the group of about a dozen youths, some of them born into Muslim families, and the others converts.

    This took place in Chateauroux, a town in the centre-west of France, at an outdoor activities centre that was deserted for winter.

    The "emir" turned out to be a young French-Turkish citizen named Oussama, who tried to convince the journalist on their very first meeting that "paradise awaits him if he carries out a suicide mission."

    "Towards paradise, that is the path," Oussama said to Ramzi with a chilling smile on his face, as he described it to AFP. "Come, brother, let's go to paradise, our women are waiting for us there, with angels as servants."

    "You will have a palace, a winged horse of gold and rubies."

    The journalist recalled meetings with other group members, in the Paris suburb of Stains, during which he was encouraged to shoot down an airplane in the name of Daesh to "traumatize France for a century."

    At yet another meeting, Oussama called for an attack on a French military base.

    "When they are eating, they are all lined up… ta-ta-ta-ta-ta," Ramzi recalled him as saying, mimicking the sound of automatic gunfire.

    It is interesting to mention that Oussama was arrested by Turkish police and handed back to France while trying to reach the Islamic State group in Syria, apparently through the territory of Turkey.

    He spent five months in jail before being released.

    While he had to show his face at the local police station once a day under his release conditions, he stayed in touch with the group via encrypted messaging application Telegram to organize meetings at which plans to launch an attack took form.

    After a series of meetings Ramzi was contacted by "a certain Abu Suleiman" who claimed he just returned from Raqqa, the Islamic State's capital in Syria and asked for a meeting.

    Instead of mythical Suleiman, a woman showed up dressed in a full-faced niqab veil who handed Ramzi a letter with an order to attack.

    The instructions told him to, "target a night club, shoot "until death," wait for security forces and set off an explosives vest." As simple as that.

    "However the security noose tightens around the group at this point, and several members of the group are arrested," AFP says.

    One of them who avoided arrest sent a message to the journalist saying: "You're done for man."

    "That is where my infiltration ended," Ramzi finally says.

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    Tags:
    terrorist attack, documentary, inflitration, recruitment, Daesh, Said Ramzi, France, Europe
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