Do Islamists Present a Real Threat to Norway and Sweden?

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Dozens of Swedish citizens received threatening letters purporting to be from the Islamic State according to Russia Today Arabic.

Those who received letters were told to convert to Islam, pay the jizya (protection)  tax or expect impending death.

The full translation reads:

In the name of Allah, the merciful, full of grace. You who are not believers will be decapitated in three days in your own house; we will bomb your rotten corpses afterwards.  You must choose between these three choices:
1. Convert to Islam. 
2. Pay the jizya for protection  
3. Or else, you will be decapitated.
The police will not prevent or save you from you being murdered. (Death comes to all of you).”

No instructions for paying jizya were included in the letters, which appeared in Ronneba, Sigtuna, Vstroes and the capital Stockholm.

In October two stores owned by Assyrian Christians in Gothenburg were defaced with Islamic State graffiti. The Islamic State logo was daubed on the shops, along with ‘The Caliphate is here’ and the Arabic letter ‘Nun’ for ‘Nazarene’ meaning Christian.

In neighboring Norway, hundreds of migrants were found with ISIS images, propaganda and execution videos on their mobile phones, according to the UK’s Daily Mail.

The Police Immigration Service reportedly found “‘photos and videos of executions and brutal punishments, such as images of people holding up severed heads or hands.”

The head of Norway’s asylum service, Erik Haugland, argued the images could be on the phones for innocent reasons either to record the horror they had fled as proof, or in order to pass through jihadist-held areas without raising suspicion.

The problem for both Sweden and Norway is that with the volume of refugees fleeing Syria, Iraq and other countries, coupled with pre-existing radicalized communities domestically it is all but impossible to adequately vet everyone.

The threatening letters in Sweden could have been sent by as few as one or two people, yet that is enough to create fear. With these sorts of letters it is impossible to ignore the threat, since they may well be genuine, but they are also very easy to send.

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Meira Svirsky

Meira Svirsky is the editor of ClarionProject.org