Islamic State terrorist parading in brand new Toyotas courtesy of the Japanese auto manufacture.
Japan is selling thousands of military vehicles to the Islamic State, and you won’t find this mentioned anywhere in the Japanese media. The Japanese automaker is reaping huge profits selling vehicles that aid the Islamic State in committing genocide, torture, kidnappings, and the destruction of ancient historical landmarks.
Toyota, the world’s second largest car maker claims it has no idea how its vehicles got into the hands of terrorists. Statements like these are entirely transparent. First, every new vehicle is sold with factory installed machine gun mounts, and bullet proof siding, and well as other features that aid the extremist group. Further, every vehicle is sold with GPS technology, which means Toyota has the technical ability to track each vehicle from the factory where it is manufactured, to the dealer the company has exclusive contracts with regarding the sales of every one of their vehicles. Finally, Toyota has the ability to locate, and track, at all times, each and every movement any of these vehicles make.
Toyota clearly engages in aiding the enemy of the U.S. and its allies with the vehicles the company is providing the extremists as they continue to wage war in Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and other regions of the Middle East. Trade with the enemy violates both international agreements, and sanctions, and this makes the executives of Toyota criminally culpable for their illegal conduct.
U.S. counter-terror officials asked Toyota to help them determine how the Islamic State has acquired such a large number of Toyota pick-up trucks, and SUVs which are used prominently in Islamic State propaganda, and enlistment videos.
Toyota claims it doesn’t know how Islamic State has obtained the vehicles and is “supporting” the inquiry led by the Terror Financing unit of the U.S. Treasury Department, which is part of a broad U.S. effort to prevent Western-made goods from ending up in the hands of Islamic State.
“We briefed the Treasury Department on Toyota’s supply chains in the Middle East, and the procedures that Toyota uses to protect supply chain integrity,” said Ed Lewis, Toyota’s Washington-based director of public policy and communications. Toyota has a “strict policy to not sell vehicles to potential purchasers who may use or modify them for paramilitary or terrorist activities,” Lewis said.
Regardless as to what Toyota’s U.S. mouthpiece has to say, the Iraqi Ambassador to the U.S., Lukman Faily, stated that Islamic State has acquired “hundreds” of “brand new” Toyotas.
“The Toyota Land Cruiser and Hilux have effectively become almost part of the ISIS brand,” said Mark Wallace, a former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations. “In nearly every Islamic State video, they show a fleet, a convoy of brand new Toyota vehicles, and that’s very concerning to us”, Wallace said.
Questions about the Islamic State using Toyota vehicles have been raised for years with the company taking no action whatsoever to prevent their vehicles from getting into extremist hands. In 2014, a report by the radio broadcaster Public Radio International noted that the U.S. State Department delivered numerous Toyota trucks to Syrian rebels. A recent report in Australia said that more than eight hundred brand new trucks had been reported missing in Sydney between 2014 and 2015, and quoted terror experts speculating that they may have been exported to territories controlled by the Islamic State.
Toyota’s figures show sales of Hilux, and Land Cruisers tripling from 6,000 sold in Iraq in 2011 to 18,000 sold in 2013. Brigadier General Saad Maan, an Iraqi military spokesman said, “We are spending our time fighting those terrorists, we cannot say we are controlling the border between Iraq and Syria,” he conceded. “We are deeply in need of answers.” Toyota distributors in the region said they did not know how the trucks reached the Islamic State.
Sumitomo, a Japanese conglomerate that ships vehicles to the region, responded to claims the company is aiding terrorism, “In terms of how anyone operating outside of the law obtain vehicles for misappropriation, we have no way to know and therefore cannot comment.” A spokesman for former owners of the Toyota dealership in Syria said its sales operation was halted in 2012. This means that the vehicles are not entering the Middle East through Syria.
Wallace, of the Counter Extremism Project, said his organization wrote directly to Toyota earlier this year to urge the company to do more to track the flow of trucks to the Islamic State, and noted that the trucks are stamped with traceable identification numbers. “Toyota’s is on notice that they must do more,” Wallace said. “They should be able to figure out how their trucks are getting into that region. I think they should disclose this, put a stop to it, and put policies and procedures in place that are real, and effective to make sure that we don’t see videos of the Islamic State using Toyota trucks in the future.” Toyota responded to Wallace’s statement by writing that Toyota stopped selling vehicles in Syria several years ago.
Toyota apparently doesn’t get it. It’s not about selling vehicles exclusively to Syria. It’s about supplying vehicles, and parts, which is a large part of its industry to Saudi Arabia, and other nations involved in the conflict, which purchases the vehicles in huge numbers, and thereafter supply them to terrorists to aid in the destruction of Shia controlled territory.
I’m curious as to what Haruna Yukawa, and Kenji Goto’s family, and friend’s thoughts are on this topic? I wonder what they drive?