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A man from Lancashire who encouraged Islamic extremists to wage jihad in the West, including targeting Prince George and injecting poison in to supermarket ice-cream, has been convicted today (31 May).
Husnain Rashid, 32, posted messages online glorifying successful terrorist atrocities committed by others while encouraging and inciting his readers to plan and commit attacks.
One of his posts included a photograph of Prince George, along with the address of his school, a black silhouette of a jihad fighter and the message ìeven the royal family will not be left aloneî.
His common theme was that attacks could be carried out by one individual acting alone. Rashid suggested perpetrators had the option of using poisons, vehicles, weapons, bombs, chemicals or knives. Rashid uploaded terrorist material to an online library he created with the goal of helping others plan an attack.
He also planned to travel to Turkey and Syria with the intention of fighting in Daesh-controlled territories. He contacted individuals he believed to be in Daesh territory, seeking advice on how to reach Syria and how to obtain the required authorisation necessary to join a fighting group.
Rashid provided one individual who had travelled to Syria and was known online as ìRepunzelî, with information about methods of shooting down aircraft and jamming missile systems.
All the offences relate to Rashidís activities online between October 2016 and his arrest in November 2017.
Rashidís trial started on 23 May at Woolwich Crown Court but he changed his plea to guilty on four counts on 31 May. He will be sentenced on 28 June.
Sue Hemming from the CPS said: ìHusnain Rashid is an extremist who not only sought to encourage others to commit attacks on targets in the West but was planning to travel aboard so he could fight himself.
ìHe tried to argue that he had not done anything illegal but with the overwhelming weight of evidence against him he changed his plea to guilty.
ìThe judge will now deci
Greater Manchester Police
A man from Lancashire who encouraged Islamic extremists to wage jihad in the West, including targeting Prince George and injecting poison in to supermarket ice-cream, has been convicted today (31 May). Husnain Rashid, 32, posted messages online glorifying successful terrorist atrocities committed by others while encouraging and inciting his readers to plan and commit attacks. One of his posts included a photograph of Prince George, along with the address of his school, a black silhouette of a jihad fighter and the message ìeven the royal family will not be left aloneî. His common theme was that attacks could be carried out by one individual acting alone. Rashid suggested perpetrators had the option of using poisons, vehicles, weapons, bombs, chemicals or knives. Rashid uploaded terrorist material to an online library he created with the goal of helping others plan an attack. He also planned to travel to Turkey and Syria with the intention of fighting in Daesh-controlled territories. He contacted individuals he believed to be in Daesh territory, seeking advice on how to reach Syria and how to obtain the required authorisation necessary to join a fighting group. Rashid provided one individual who had travelled to Syria and was known online as ìRepunzelî, with information about methods of shooting down aircraft and jamming missile systems. All the offences relate to Rashidís activities online between October 2016 and his arrest in November 2017. Rashidís trial started on 23 May at Woolwich Crown Court but he changed his plea to guilty on four counts on 31 May. He will be sentenced on 28 June. Sue Hemming from the CPS said: ìHusnain Rashid is an extremist who not only sought to encourage others to commit attacks on targets in the West but was planning to travel aboard so he could fight himself. ìHe tried to argue that he had not done anything illegal but with the overwhelming weight of evidence against him he changed his plea to guilty. ìThe judge will now deci
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FILE - In this undated file photo released by a militant website, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, militants of the Islamic State group hold up their weapons and wave flags on their vehicles in a convoy on a road leading to Iraq, while riding in Raqqa, Syria. Simultaneous attacks on the Islamic State-held city of Mosul in Iraq and Raqqa, the de facto IS capital across the border in eastern Syria, would make military sense: They would make it harder for the extremists to move reinforcements and deny them a safe haven. (Militant website via AP, File)
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(FILES) This image grab taken from a propaganda video released on July 5, 2014 by al-Furqan Media allegedly shows the leader of the Islamic State (IS) jihadist group, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, aka Caliph Ibrahim, adressing Muslim worshippers at a mosque in the militant-held northern Iraqi city of Mosul. 
The Russian army on June 16, 2017 said it hit Islamic State leaders in an airstrike in Syria last month and was seeking to verify whether IS chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi had been killed. In a statement, the army said Sukhoi warplanes carried out a 10-minute night-time strike on May 28 at a location near Raqa, where IS leaders had gathered to plan a pullout by militants from the group's stronghold.
 / AFP PHOTO / AL-FURQAN MEDIA / --/AFP/Getty Images
(FILES) This image grab taken from a propaganda video released on July 5, 2014 by al-Furqan Media allegedly shows the leader of the Islamic State (IS) jihadist group, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, aka Caliph Ibrahim, adressing Muslim worshippers at a mosque in the militant-held northern Iraqi city of Mosul. The Russian army on June 16, 2017 said it hit Islamic State leaders in an airstrike in Syria last month and was seeking to verify whether IS chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi had been killed. In a statement, the army said Sukhoi warplanes carried out a 10-minute night-time strike on May 28 at a location near Raqa, where IS leaders had gathered to plan a pullout by militants from the group's stronghold. / AFP PHOTO / AL-FURQAN MEDIA / --/AFP/Getty Images
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Story highlights

Eight Silver Stars have been awarded to American service members fighting ISIS

Silver Stars are the third-highest US military combat honor

(CNN) —  

One Army helicopter pilot flew a mission for 10 hours, five of them while wounded, in a high-risk effort to rescue American hostages.

Another continued a dangerous night-time mission deep in enemy territory despite sustaining extensive damage to his aircraft.

These are just some of the details contained in documents obtained by CNN. Eight Silver Stars, the third-highest US military combat honor, have been awarded to American service members fighting ISIS, CNN has learned. Two have previously been made public, but most of them have been kept under wraps due to the sensitive nature of the operations, including two more awarded earlier this summer.

Four of these citations remain so classified that no information is available about them, despite repeated attempts to obtain them.

But CNN has learned new details about two anti-ISIS operations gleaned from records of the combat awards. CNN has agreed to a Pentagon request to withhold the names of troops involved because many are still on active duty and there is concern about ISIS trying to track them down.

RELATED: Infographic: US military honors, explained

In one case, a Silver Star was awarded for a mission in July 2014 in which Navy SEALS and Army Delta Force commandos had tried to rescue American hostages held by ISIS in Raqqa, including journalist James Foley.

They didn’t succeed in rescuing the American captives, who had already been moved, and Foley was later executed by Jihadi John.

But in the effort, an Army helicopter pilot received the decoration for a “10-hour, classified, high-risk mission deep inside enemy territory.”

The pilot flew overhead for “five hours after being wounded during the initial assault.”

A Marine on the same mission was awarded a Bronze Star, bestowed for heroic achievement or service in ground combat, as he came into “close combat” with ISIS and “eliminated a grave threat.”

Another Silver Star was awarded in connection with a May 2015 raid inside Syria to capture top ISIS operative Abu Sayyaf, who ended up being killed in a firefight.

In that incident, considered one of the biggest intelligence hauls in the fight against ISIS, an Army pilot was decorated for a night-time “high-risk mission deep inside enemy territory.” He continued to fly for over an hour “despite sustaining intense battle damage to his aircraft during the initial assault.”

RELATED: US troops lost weapons to ISIS in firefight

Why valor is kept under wraps has everything to do with keeping troops safe and their counterterrorism tactics secret. “The two primary reasons are that the operation itself is classified or that the member is part of our special forces,” said Pat Mulcahy, the Defense Department official who helps oversees the awards program.

Mulcahy noted that since the 9/11 attacks, some 1,200 troops have received the nation’s top awards: the Medal of Honor, the Silver Star and the Service Cross.

Twenty percent of those awards – or some 240 – remain classified.

One Marine gunnery sergeant was awarded the Navy Cross for heroism during the attack on the US compound in Benghazi, Libya, in 2012, helping to save wounded colleagues, the documents reveal.

Since operations against ISIS began, it appears the percentage of secret operations is growing.

“Since June 2014, the services have awarded eight silver stars, half of them are either (because) the member was in a classified operation or they are a member of the Special Forces,” Mulcahy said.

One award did become public in extraordinary circumstances.

In February, Navy Senior Chief Edward Byers, a member of the secretive SEAL Team Six, stepped out of the shadows and into the glare of media and lights at a White House ceremony where he received the Medal of Honor – the nation’s highest award – from President Obama.

The President openly acknowledged the unusual occurrence: “Many of the operational details of his mission remain classified. Many of his teammates cannot be mentioned,” the President said.

Byers held off a Taliban fighter with his bare hands during a hostage rescue.

“Ed saved the lives of several teammates – and that hostage,” Obama noted.

The Navy says Byers remains on active duty. But the military will not say where he is, or what job he carries out. It’s a similar situation to so many others, who are working in the shadows despite their acts of valor.