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American Taliban Militant To Be Released From Prison

John Walker Lindh will be released from prison in May.

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An American who became a Taliban militant and took up arms against the U.S military will be released from federal prison in May.

John Walker Lindh traveled to Afghanistan in 2001 to join forces with the Islamist militant group. He was later captured by American forces after the invasion of the country that year, and was returned to the United States to face ten felony charges involving providing aid to the enemy.

Lindh, also known as simply ‘John Walker,’ is possibly one of the first individuals from an American or Western background to be radicalized into Islamist extremism. A native of California, he converted to Islam when he was 16 years old and traveled to nations such as Pakistan and Yemen to familiarize himself with the religion.

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It’s said that Walker Lindh has declined to fully renounce the Islamist beliefs that led him to travel to Afghanistan, even though he’ll be released after completing 17 years of a 20 year prison sentence in May. A document from the National Counterterrorism Center alleges that Lindh has played a role in translating Islamist extremist texts while in prison.

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Walker is said to have obtained Irish citizenship from a grandparent, and is planning on taking up residence in Ireland upon his release.

Islamist militants imprisoned by the United States have been known to return to violent extremism after completing their prison sentences.

Individuals affiliated with the Afghan Taliban who were freed in a prisoner-of-war swap for U.S Army deserter Bowe Bergdahl are known to have reestablished ties with the Afghan Islamist organization.

Big League National Security

President Trump Announces Planned Ban on Chinese-Owned TikTok App

The app has serious spying concerns.

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President Donald Trump announced that he’s preparing to ban the video app TikTok on national security grounds on Friday, citing the concerns over the Chinese app’s connections to Chinese government security, and the potential use of the nominally innocent app to surveil American citizens.

The President had made the announcement on an Air Force One flight to the press pool, later confirming that the media could report on the policy move on the record.

As far as TikTok is concerned, we’re banning them from the United States,” said the President bluntly.

TikTok is a viral video app marketed to teenagers and young adults that allows users to create short and edited videos. It’s frequently used for memes, pranks, and simple political content. It’s owned by Chinese company ByteDance, which is obligated to cooperate with Chinese intelligence services under the laws of China.

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Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had previously spoken of security concerns involving the Chinese app. Microsoft had recently offered to purchase the app from its parent company, but the surveillance and security surrounding it appear to have shelved such a possibility for now.

There are genuine surveillance and data-mining concerns with TikTok, but it’s also probably worth considering that banning the app will allow neoliberal tech monopolies such as Facebook and Apple to share up an even larger share of the demand for platforms designed for similar content.

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