An American from Texas, John Georgelas, left the U.S. in the early 2000s for the Middle East after radicalizing to become a Muslim jihadist. He also ditched his given name and adopted the alias, “Yahya Abu Hassan.”
A former student at a junior college in central Texas, Georgelas grew an interest in studying Muslim culture after years of drug experimentation and anti-social behavior. He soon became a devout Muslim, married a Muslim woman from London, had a few children, and left the U.S. for Turkey. Meanwhile, Georgelas slowly developed a growing relationship with ISIS.
Prior to leaving the U.S. in 2006, Georgelas was on the FBI watch list. He was eventually arrested and convicted after being caught communicating through the internet with known terrorists. However, he was later given parole. That’s when he and his family fled for Turkey. The family did not stay there long because Georgelas truly wanted to fight the jihad in the holy revolution. Thus, he forcefully brought his family to Syria in 2013.
His family eventually left, but Georgelas continued to fight the “infidels” in combat. Soon enough, he was critically injured from a bullet wound. Unable to fight on the battlefield any longer, he became a designated hacker for the ISIS organization.
In August of this year, ISIS’ second-in-command, Abu Muhammad al-Adnani, was killed in a drone strike. A few months later on December 5, 2016, Gerogelas was announced as his successor, under the name Abu al-Hassan al-Muhajir. The title in English is translated as “spokesman.”
Georgelas’ wife, Tania, and his three children have abandoned Georgelas and Islam. They have moved back to Texas to live with his parents, who still to this day are in a state of awe that their son fled America to join the world’s most fearsome terrorist organization. And yes, you read this correctly: the current second-most-powerful leader of ISIS was once a former American college student from Texas.
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