There's an interview given this week....to the Frankfurt Allgemeine Zeitung. Their reporter had a chance to quiz the Interior Minister.....Hans-Peter Friedrich.
The questions included some over Syria, and possible German involvement. What Friedrich came to say is that he has a belief that at least fifty Germans are in the civil war of Syria, and he's worried. He thinks when they finally return (which might be months, or even a year or two)....they may not be the same warm fuzzy and happy Germans that they were before. His hint? Jihad time-bombs.
The fifty number? You can't find concrete evidence of the number. Around Europe, there are various countries hinting a count, and they think there are around 600 Europeans in Syria. It's not rock-solid, concrete or reliable. I suspect rumors get reported in a neighborhood....cops hear and turn in a report....and there's some office in the Interior Ministry which handles issues like this. So they perhaps keep up a count.
Who are the fifty Germans? No one is really saying if they are even Muslims. If you glance at the news every night....from Channel One....Germans are getting a fair dose of a terrible and woeful war against civilians.
American newspapers went into turbo back in the fall of 1936 and told front-page stories of the Spanish Civil War. The events captivated American men. We were in the depression and for some odd reason, the fight for liberty was something that we could be enthusiastic about and support.
I think the German news folks have done the same thing with the Syrian war. There might be fifty there now, but there's probably a thousand Germans who'd like to do something about what they see.
The action? I don't necessarily think most of the fifty Germans are fighting. A fair number are probably acting as medics and ambulance helpers.
As for the comment of possible jihad fever after they return? It's hard to say. I don't necessarily see the Syrians as being Muslims against the evil government. This is more of a united front, without much Muslim identification. I do agree....some Muslim groups are appearing and joining in the action.
The end result? When the fifty do eventually return....they will all be noticed and looked upon. The same occurred in America in the summer of 1939, as those vets returned home from the Spanish Civil War. It was a label that stuck for decades in their case. Books will be written, experiences told, and questions will be raised over trust.
History, simply repeating itself.