HOW are Islamic State extremists getting their hands on so many Toyota four-wheel-drives?
It’s a question that has remained unanswered for months, with the manufacturer’s Hiluxes and Land Cruisers impossible to miss in IS propaganda.
White Toyotas branded with the black caliphate seal, carrying IS fighters and their large calibre weapons into war zones in Syria, Iraq and Libya, feature prominently in images and videos posted on social media by the terrorist group.
Some conspiracy theorists have even latched on the phenomenon as supposed “proof” the United State government is funding the militants.
US Treasury officials have spoken with Toyota about the issue, and the department’s terrorism and financial intelligence wing is understood to be mounting an inquiry.
Toyota has said it maintains “a strict policy to not sell vehicles to potential purchasers who may use or modify them for paramilitary or terrorist activities”.
Iraq’s US ambassador Lukman Faily, told ABC News that in addition to re-purposing older trucks, his government believed IS had acquired hundreds of “brand new” Toyotas in recent years.
“This is a question we’ve been asking our neighbours,” Mr Faily said.
“How could these brand new trucks … these four wheel drives, hundreds of them — where are they coming from?”
Mark Wallace, a former US ambassador to the United Nations who is chief executive of not-for-profit group Counter Extremism Project, also spoke to ABC News.
“Regrettably, the Toyota Land Cruiser and Hilux have effectively become almost part of the ISIS brand,” Mr Wallace said.
“In nearly every ISIS video, they show a fleet — a convoy of Toyota vehicles and that’s very concerning to us.”
He said Toyota “should do more” to get to the bottom of the mystery.
The US Treasury monitors monetary transfers and the flow of goods that could aid militants, and an abundance of any company’s product being used by extremists would draw attention.
Yet such inquiries are often part of a more comprehensive look into how money and material flows in areas of strife where militants operate.
Toyota released a statement that suggested just such an inquiry.
“We are committed to complying fully with the laws and regulations of each country or region where we operate, and require our dealers and distributors to do the same,” the company said.
“We are supporting the US Treasury Departments broader inquiry into international supply chains and the flow of capital and goods in the Middle East.”
Toyota distributors in the region contacted by ABC News reportedly said they did not know how the trucks reached ISIS.
The company stopped selling vehicles in Syria several years ago.
The US Treasury declined to comment on Wednesday on any specific inquiry.
“In line with our usual approach to understanding ISIL’s financial and economic activities, we are working closely with foreign counterparts and stakeholders worldwide,” the Treasury Department said in a printed statement, referring to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.
While there are procedures in place to help prevent its products from being diverted for unauthorised military use, according to Toyota, the company says that it’s impossible for it or any carmaker to control the channels through which its vehicles can be misappropriated, stolen or resold by third parties.
IS propaganda has also featured small numbers of other car brands, including Mitsubishi, Hyundai and Isuzu.
However the following video spills the beans
Captured ISIS leader Yousef al-Salafi has confessed that the Islamic State is being funded by the U.S. government. America has been suspicious of the Obama Administration’s treason without concrete evidence – until now. You’re shocked? Really?
What else is there to say? None of this is new, yet thousands and thousands of Americans will watch the video below in shock and disbelief.
Then, they will continue to do what they do best… nothing.
A few weeks ago, a post titled Obama Ushers In Armageddon to America, provided a list of the 45 Goals of the Soviet Union to bring about the complete destruction of the United States. The list was published in 1958 during the cold war. After looking at the post for all of 30 seconds, the reader can count the goals that are highlighted in BRIGHT RED, and should take notice that Obama and his band of clapping seals in today’s Democrat Party have already accomplished about 30 out of the 45 goals. There is no debate to be had, go look.
The following video is from that post. People need to wake up. Please.