The Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL), in the latest edition of its propaganda magazine, indicated that it could purchase a nuclear weapon in Pakistan, take it to Nigeria, and then smuggle it into the U.S. through Mexico by using existing trafficking networks in Latin America.
In an op-ed article published in the ninth edition of ISIS’ Dabiq magazine released in late May, the jihadist group claims it could transport a nuclear device in the same way illicit drugs are smuggled into Europe through West Africa, adding that Boko Haram’s presence in Nigeria could facilitate the transaction.
The Nigeria-based Islamic terrorist group, Boko Haram, pledged allegiance to ISIS in March.
In March, Gen. John Kelly, then-commander of U.S. Southern Command (Southcom), warned that Islamic terrorist groups such as ISIS could exploit the capabilities and knowledge of Latin American smuggling networks to infiltrate the U.S. through Mexico and possibly bring in weapons of mass destruction.
The general, in October 2014, acknowledged that illegal drugs from South America move “through West Africa, up the Maghreb and into Western Europe,” adding that ISIS enemy al Qaeda and its affiliates take “a lot of money to allow it to flow.”
According to the alleged author of the Dabiq op-ed article, kidnapped British photojournalist John Cantlie, ISIS could smuggle a nuke into the U.S. by using the same route and reversing the flow— moving the nuke from West Africa into South America, from where it could be transported into the United States through Mexico.
“Let me throw a hypothetical operation onto the table,” Cantlie wrote in the article entitled “The Perfect Storm.” “The Islamic State has billions of dollars in the bank, so they call on their wilāyah [province] in Pakistan to purchase a nuclear device through weapons dealers with links to corrupt officials in the region.” He addded: