Terror Investigation: German Islamist Resurfaces by Video from Afghanistan
Eric Breininger has been one of Germany’s most-wanted men since he joined the Islamist Jihad Union terrorist organization. He’s now resurfaced in a video from Afghanistan. His message: He has no plans for an attack against Germany.
German officials have been looking for the young man for months. It is a search that has spanned the globe, but which had largely been fruitless. Until Tuesday that is, when Eric Breininger, a young German man from the western state of Saarland, popped up in an Islamic Jihad Union (IJU) terror video claiming he is currently in Afghanistan.
In the video, Breininger — a 21-year-old convert to Islam who has adopted the nom de guerre Abdulgaffar el Almani — sounds little like the terrorist German officials suspect he has become. Indeed, in the six-minute-long clip, which was posted on the IJU Web site on Tuesday, he sounds more like a young schoolboy reading his homework out loud in front of the class. The mini-movie is called “A Call from Hindu Kush,” and its message is clear: “I am currently in Afghanistan and am not personally planning an attack on the country of Germany,” Breininger says into the camera.
The statement seems to be a direct response to growing concerns that Breininger was preparing to do just that — and that such an attack could be imminent. Much of that fear stems from knowledge of the group Breininger has joined. The IJU had close contacts with three terror suspects arrested in the western German region of Sauerlandlast year. The three, Fritz Gelowicz, Adem Yilmaz and Daniel Schneider, stand accused of trying to build a bomb for at attack in Germany. The IJU was also responsible for a suicide attack in Khost, Afghanistan carried out by Cüneyit C. from Bavaria. The March attack killed four people.
(…) Breininger’s video is not unlike others in the genre. He accuses the German government of double standards for promoting democracy in some parts of the world but not standing up for Muslims when they are treated poorly. He says that Germany is a potential target for Islamists because the country’s military, the Bundeswehr, is stationed in Uzbekistan and Afghanistan and that pulling soldiers out of those countries would reduce the danger of an attack. He warns that he and his comrades will wage “war against the occupiers” until the countries occupied are “liberated.” Any country that is a military ally of the United States, he says, should expect to be attacked.