This cassette contains some of the thought provoking, and at times, miraculous biographies of the Shuhadaa.
Last year I decided to dedicate a few posts to Salafist-jihadi texts that emphasize the movement's mysticism and spiritualism. Part IV profiles In the Hearts of Green Birds, a 90s-era English-language martyrology of individuals who died during the Bosnian War. The product of UK-based Azzam Publications, it came to my attention back in 2006 when it was distributed around the then-limited English-language jihadi web. It’s part of a popular genre in the Salafist-jihadi media that highlights the sacred qualities of the deaths of young men who die during what Abu Musab al-Suri called “open front” jihads.
Azzam Publications was a close-knit network of UK-based e-hadis (some of the earliest examples we have) who distributed Salafist-jihadi multimedia often used in recruitment and fund raising for the various open front jihads of the pre-9/11 era. NEFA Foundation has a screen capture from the group’s website before it was shut down after 9/11.
The current version -- still active on (where else?) Archive-dot-org -- was posted on 08 Feb 2007 by someone employing the uploader ID, "[email protected]" It carries a comment by a member of the ozooo media group, posted on 22 Feb 2008. It lacks the transcript.
My copy of the file, however, was posted to a commercial server probably by someone active on the Ummah.com forum, where I first came across it, back in Feb 2006. The Ummah.com post includes the transcript. I also found the audio file and transcript on Archive around the same time. The current Archive file lacks the transcript.
Here is an excerpt drawn from the Ummah.com transcript:
Abu Musa at-Turki, "Camera-man of the Mujahideen." Operation Miracle, July 1995
Born of Turkish parents in Germany, his parents did not have enough money to bring him up and so they sold him to a German family. He was brought up as a non-Muslim by a German family. He was a model student and a very well behaved child, and no one could see the difference, as he was very fair in skin color. All of a sudden when he reached the age of 15, things began to go wrong for him. He began to mess around in school, and he became confused. He knew there was something different about him. He knew he was different than these people and that he was not German. Once he had an argument with his German mother, and she told him: "You are not my son!" And he went back and said that: "...That statement reverberated in my mind, and I went back and asked my mom what does this mean? She refused to tell me. After much battery, she told me the whole story, and that she was still in touch with my Turkish parents. My real parents, I went to see them and I began to live with them...." So he began to live with them and after a number of years, at the age of 21, he traveled to Bosnia.
And this brother, he had some experience in how to make video-films and mix videotapes. So in Bosnia, they made him the cameraman in the Operation. So, along with a Kalashnikov and his weapons, he’d carry a camera. And this brother; I witnessed this brother, he would be in the front of the attacks, with his camera, fighting and even reaching the Serb bunkers before the rest of the brothers, and he’d be standing on top of the bunkers. The Serbs would still be shooting from out of the window of the bunker and he’d be filming on top. And he said to me; he reached the bunkers and he said to me: "I felt: should I throw a grenade inside or should I put a camera inside?" And then he said he’d put the camera inside so he could get the best possible pictures, so he could mix the best film, so that he could send it back to the other brothers that don’t know anything about Jihad so that they could see the Jihad in their TV’s so that they could find out and learn about Jihad. That was his intention, he wanted to make the best possible tapes, that’s why he was always in the front with his camera. In the second operation, Allah took him as Shaheed inshaAllah.
....many people who knew Abu Musa, described him like a walking cartoon character. And you’d look at this man and you’d think that he is dumb or that he’s mental, but he is, and was, very clever.