ISIS' call for “lone wolf attacks” has hit North America.
The attack took place while two soldiers were standing in a parking lot in Montreal. One soldier was wearing his uniform. The man behind the wheel, 25-year-old Martin Roulea, intentionally hit the armed forces members and then attempted to make a getaway from police in pursuit.
However, Roulea lost control of his getaway car during the chase and flipped. As Roulea made his exit from the vehicle, police exercised the use of deadly force. One of the soldiers Roulea hit didn't survive. The other only sustained minor injuries.
According to the Independent:
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police said that Rouleau was known to federal authorities, including counter-terrorism agencies, who “were concerned that he had become radicalised”.
In addition, a textbook weapon of choice for terrorists was recovered at the scene.
While it's unclear if Roulea planned to use the knife on his victims, the chilling profile picture from his alleged Twitter account reveals whom he supports:
Also, according to an interview from Canada's The Star with a former friend of Roulea's, the aspiring ISIS recruit tried to flee the country to fight jihad but was stopped by the authorities. RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson supported the story, revealing that Roulea's passport have been revoked.
Adding context to the tragedy, Roulea's friends explained that he had tried to convert them, that “it was a terrorist attack” and “Martin died like he wanted to.” Not shockingly, Roulea was under surveillance for suspected extremists activities.
Even more disturbing, officials said that close to 80 individuals had linked up with terror groups abroad and now returned home. But they are not able to keep tabs on the jihadists because of strained government resources.
Last month, VICE conducted an exclusive interview with an ISIS terrorist in Mosul who proudly claimed that he knew thousands of people in the West prepared to carry out attacks for the Islamic State. Whether this specific incident was a lone wolf or an orchestrated attack remains up for debate.
However, one thing is vividly clear: From the Oklahoma beheading to this attack on Canadian soldiers, ISIS is finding sympathizers here in the West. And what was once labeled a regional threat is now all too close to home.