American Mom, School Teacher Was a Battalion Leader for ISIS, Prosecutors Allege

By Alice Giordano
Alice Giordano
Alice Giordano
Freelance reporter
Alice Giordano is a freelance reporter for The Epoch Times. She is a former news correspondent for The Boston Globe, Associated Press, and the New England bureau of The New York Times.
January 30, 2022Updated: January 31, 2022

Federal authorities arrested a former Kansas school teacher and mother of five and charged her with plotting terrorist attacks on American soil, including a shopping mall and a college campus.

Allison Elizabeth Fluke-Ekren, 42, was apprehended in Syria late Thursday, according to a U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) press release.

Fluke-Ekren began her stint as a terrorist shortly after leaving the U.S. in 2008, according to the DOJ. In a statement released Friday on Fluke-Ekren’s arrest and extradition back to the U.S., the DOJ detailed her intense involvement with the ISIS terrorist group over the course of three years.

Fluke-Ekren allegedly served as a leader of an all-women military battalion of ISIS known as Khatiba Nusayba.

Six eyewitnesses gave detailed accounts to U.S. federal agents of Fluke-Ekren’s alleged terrorist activity starting in 2016, which was about eight years after she moved to the Middle East. One of the witnesses described Fluke-Ehren’s alleged plot to park a vehicle full of explosives in the basement or parking garage level at a U.S. shopping mall and detonate the explosives in the vehicle using a cell phone with a triggering device.

One witness said that the former Kansas school teacher fantasized about large-scale attacks and only considered a location a good one for the attack “if it contained large amounts of congregating people.”

According to another eyewitness account, Fluke-Ekren said she considered any attack that did not kill a large number of individuals to be a waste of resources and campaigned for attacks to occur on American soil.

Fluke-Ekren’s battalion, which included young children, was trained in the handling of AK-47s, grenades, and improvised explosive devices. They were also taught how to prep a “go bag” with rifles and other military supplies.

The DOJ also had information that members of the all-women ISIS group often expressed they were especially proud to have an American leading them.

Under the blog entitled, Fluke-Ekren wrote about family exploits in the Middle East before joining ISIS. There are several pictures of her, her first husband, and her children riding camels. Posts dating back to Christmas day in 2008 by friends include well wishings and hugs to the kids.

“Everyone asks about you here in Wichita and KC,” wrote one friend. “Take care and I hope to read much, much more about your adventures!!!!”

Fluke-Ekren replied back stating “Please give everyone in both places my best regards and salaams.”

Several new posts now appear on her blog with a very different tone. One person wrote just yesterday “When you were planning to put a bomb under a shopping mall, did you think of the kids that would be murdered? Kids like your kids?”

The blog posts predate the birth of her fifth child, who is believed, based on information from the DOJ, to be around 13. Her other children would be young adults.

Terrorism appears to have become a family affair, replacing camel-riding activity with toting AK-47s. According to one witness in the federal complaint, one of Fluke-Ekren’s children, estimated to be about 5 or 6 years old, was seen outside the family home in Syria toting one of the gas-fueled assault weapons. Fluke-Ekren’s American husband died in 2016 while leading ISIS snipers in an airstrike. She remarried a Bangladeshi described as a prominent ISIS leader.

According to the federal complaint against her, the ISIS battalion led by the American mom included children about the age of her children seen in pictures on her blog.

Under federal sentencing guidelines, if convicted, the maximum prison sentence faced by Fluke-Ekren is 20 years.

Her arraignment is scheduled for Monday afternoon at the federal courthouse in Eastern District of Virginia federal courthouse in Alexandria. Under federal sentencing guidelines, if convicted, the maximum prison sentence faced by Fluke-Ekren is 20 years.

Update: Fluke-Ekren appeared in court on Jan. 31 for a brief hearing. She did not enter a plea. Judge Ivan Davis ordered her held without bail until a detention hearing, which is to take place on Feb. 4.

Joseph King of the Alexandria law firm King, Campbell, Poretz, and Mitchell was named as Fluke-Ekren’s attorney at the hearing. King did not respond to inquiries from The Epoch Times about the case. King and his law firm have represented several high-profile criminal cases in the Washington DC area including serial killer Charles Severance’s case.

U.S. Attorney Raj Parekh told Judge Davis today during the hearing that Fluke-Ekren’s adult children as well as her parents have requested to have no contact with her.

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