MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – President Barack Obama did not mention in his Wednesday night address the recruitment of Minnesotans by ISIS (or ISIL) and their dying in battle overseas.
There are reports that as many as 15 young men and women with Minnesota ties have left to join the terror group.READ MORE: Supply Chain Issues: How Are Global Shortages Affecting Local Customers?
The State Department confirmed that Douglas McCain, who grew up in the Twin Cities, died in an ISIS battle.
The reported death of Minnesotan Abdirahmaan Muhumed has still not been confirmed by the U.S. government.
While the president outlined his strategy to “degrade and destroy” ISIS, the leaders of Ka-Joog, a nonprofit group that has worked primarily in the Twin Cities Somali community to keep young people from being recruited by terror groups, said the president needs to do more.
“How are going to get young Americans…get them away from being recruited to such organizations like ISIS?” said Mohamed Farah, Ka-Joog’s executive director. “I think that’s what I really wanted to hear, that’s what we wanted to hear out in the community.”
A division of ISIS has been churning out slick English language recruiting videos. It’s an indication, Ka-Joog leaders say, of the group’s sophistication.
“They know who they want to target, and that is really Americans, young Americans,” Farah said.READ MORE: Fourth Stimulus Check: Is Another Relief Payment Coming?
In Minneapolis, a federal grand jury has been hearing testimony for weeks on recruiting efforts here. So far, there have been no indictments.
On Thursday, a Bloomington mosque and youth center called Al Farooq issued a statement on a June incident that led to police being called. A man, Amir Meshal, was talking to young people at the center about radical ideology.
“Al Farooq banned that individual from its premises,” the statement said. “Al Farooq does not tolerate any advocacy or recruitment for violent causes or extremism on its premises.”
Meshal is originally from New Jersey. In 2009, a lawsuit was filed on his behalf by the ACLU. The suit accused the FBI of false imprisonment and also claimed the FBI tried to recruit Meshal as an informer.
That federal lawsuit was dismissed last June.
An employee at Al Farooq said after police showed up and cited Meshal for trespassing last June, he never came back.MORE NEWS: Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo Will Not Seek 3rd Term
Meshal’s present whereabouts are unknown.