When Australian Mohammed Illias Ayub travelled to Syria to join Islamic State about two years ago, he told his family he was heading to Turkey to study fisheries.
For a family once mired in the top jihadic echelons it should have been a signal. Illias, 27, is one of two sons of Australian Muslim convert Rabiah Hutchinson and Abdul Rahim Ayub, who led the terror cell Jemaah Islamiah in Australia during the 1980s and 90s.
Yet it was still a revelation when Illias, prepped for battle, appeared on Facebook in this newspaper in February, according to Abdul Rahman Ayub, the twin brother of Abdul Rahim Ayub. Rahman Ayub was the deputy chief of Mantiqi 4, JI’s Australian operational arm. It was through Mantiqi 4 that the 2002 Bali bombings were executed, killing 202 people, including 88 Australians, though the Ayub brothers have always professed to being oblivious of the operation.