Only a few months behind on the story of the Minneapolis missing Somali men (former refugees) who are believed to have returned to Somalia for terrorist training, the Los Angeles Times does have some further details.
For instance we learned this really important nugget—one of the would-be Islamic fighters wanted to go to Harvard. Ho hum, guess that’s out now.
“He wanted to go to Harvard,” said his uncle Osman Ahmed. “That was his dream.”
The LA Times has a quote that firms up the number missing from Minneapolis but still no word on how many are missing from other US cities where we resettled them at taxpayer expense and gave them an opportunity for a good life.
The youths, who have U.S. passports, followed a well-trod trail from Minneapolis to Mogadishu. Another group took off in August. The FBI believes that over the last two years, 12 to 20 Minnesotans have gone to Somalia.
As a result, a joint terrorism task force led by the FBI is scrambling to determine if extremist Islamic groups are seeking recruits here in the nation’s largest Somali community — as well as in San Diego, Seattle, Boston and other cities. [Hint to FBI: be sure you add Lewiston, ME to your list of possible recruitment cities]
More details on Shirwa Ahmed, the 27-year-old Somali suicide bomber we gave a decent burial to back in December were revealed. We now know that he was definitely a suicide bomber and he killed UN aid workers among the 30 or so people he blew up.
Officials believe the naturalized American was on a terrorist team that detonated five car bombs in two northern Somali cities on Oct. 29, killing at least 30 people, including U.N. aid workers.
Ahmed phoned his sister in Minneapolis a day before the bombings to say he would not see her again, according to a family friend. “She thought he was sick,” the friend said. The next day, someone else called from Somalia to say he had “gone to paradise” as a martyr for Islam.
I still would like to know how much the return of Ahmed’s remains cost the US taxpayer.
The FBI brought back bone fragments and other remains found in Bosaso, one of the blast sites, Wilson said. DNA tests established Ahmed’s identity.
He was buried in a Muslim funeral in Burnsville, south of Minneapolis, on Dec. 3.
Ahmed had not been on the FBI’s radar before the bombings. And his death raised fears that someone trained in Somalia might import terrorist tactics to America.
“There is always a concern about spillover, bleed-out, call it what you will,” said a U.S. official tracking the case who requested anonymity when discussing U.S. intelligence matters. “Especially if they were to return on a U.S. passport.”
How about that, the FBI didn’t have Ahmed or these other guys on their radar screen. Guess they didn’t see any need to keep an eye on radical MOSQUES!
We had heard about one mosque being watched since the men went missing, but this LA Times article adds a second mosque now under scrutiny in the Minneapolis area.
The leader of another mosque under scrutiny, the Darul Da’wah center in St. Paul, Minn., denied rumors in the Somali community that the alleged suicide bomber and several other missing men were among his followers.
Looks to me like someone at these mosques has friends in al Shabab.
In declaring Shabab a terrorist organization last February, the State Department called it “a violent and brutal extremist group with a number of individuals affiliated with Al Qaeda” — including the terrorists who bombed the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998.
It’s not clear that the still-missing Minnesotans have joined Shabab or were radicalized at local mosques to join the jihad. But many family members and community activists believe they have.
Oh come on, Mommy, Daddy and Grandpa too know what they were learning at the mosque.
The baby-faced senior at Harding High School in St. Paul had attended both the Abubakar As-Saddique and the Darul Da’wah mosques, Yusuf said. Last summer, the youth embraced the extremist Saudi style of Islam known as Wahhabism, and praised Shabab as the “liberators” of Somalia.
“I told him, ‘This is wrong — your father and your grandfather don’t believe this,’ ” Yusuf recalled in an interview. “He told me they were ignorant. He called me an unbeliever.”
Who could imagine such a thing?”
The comic relief:
It’s getting really funny, but Omar Jamal, formerly convicted of immigration fraud, is in every story about Somalis from sea to shining sea. Maybe that’s a slight exageration, but only slight. He even got involved in the Somali cyanide death in Denver last summer. Here are all the posts in which we mention him. Does every reporter have to talk to this guy?
In this LA Times article he tells us it’s all about the warlords. Huh?
“They each support a particular warlord back in Somalia,” Omar Jamal, head of the Somali Justice Advocacy Center, explained as he puffed on a huge hookah at the crowded Pyramids Cafe and Shisha Lounge.