Boy told undercover agents he could get a gun because he’s a “rapper”; authored article containing “jihad” workout tips
An Somali-born, American teenager was apparently set up by federal law enforcement officials who posed as radical Islamic fighters and lured the young man into a plot he believed would lead him to detonate a car bomb at an Oregon Christmas tree lighting ceremony.
The bomb, provided by FBI agents, was “inert” and did not pose a threat to public safety, according to the US Attorney’s Office in Oregon.
Oddly enough, Arthur Balizan, an FBI agent in Oregon, contradicted the US Attorney’s Office, suggesting that the threat posed by 19-year-old Mohamed Osman Mohamud “was very real.”
Except: “[At] every turn,” he explained, “we denied him the ability to actually carry out the attack.”
The story rings devastatingly familiar when stacked next to the tale of Hosam Maher Husein Smadi, a Jordanian man arrested in 2009, at age 19, for allegedly planning to detonate a car bomb in a Dallas skyscraper.
Each boy was led down the path to imagined violence by federal agents, with authorities ultimately providing fake bombs in both cases. Smadi and Mohamud, officials claim, expressed a desire to engage in terrorist attacks before agents began luring them in.
Federal agents noticed Mohamud in December 2009, after he allegedly communicated with a suspected terrorist in Pakistan. Months later, an undercover agent contacted Mohamud claiming to be the individual’s associate, and Mohamud agreed to meet in Portland.
Agents claimed that Mohamud revealed himself to be the author of a bizarre 2009 article for the English-language “Jihad Recollections” magazine. The story made headlines for it’s comical images of masked fighters helping each other exercise.
Source: “Jihad Recollections,” April, 2009.
Other articles in the 70+ page magazine published in North Carolina included a preview of “emp technology,” poetry, speeches from Osama bin Laden and a how-to guide to global jihad.
One key thing, however, was oddly lacking from the magazine’s first edition: as even Fox News noted, it did not explicitly call for violence against anyone.
The magazine also featured quotes from Tennessee Republican Congressman Zach Wamp, who made headlines again last July for suggesting that his state secede from the US.
Agents also reveal in court documents that Mohamud had told them he might be able to get a gun, because he was a “rapper.”
“We were unable to determine Mohamud’s Jihadi emcee name, or the potency of his flow,” Gawker quipped.
Court documents claim the first meeting between Mohamud and the FBI took place in July, 2010. In the months following, agents ostensibly worked him up to the point where he was willing to flip the switch on a car bomb. Agents even took Mohamud to a secluded location to blow up a bomb they placed in a backpack, allegedly as a test run.
Mohamud was arrested by FBI agents and Portland police around 5:40 pm Friday, after he attempted to remotely detonate what he believed to be an explosives-laden van. Officials claimed that early on Friday, Mohamud had recorded a video explaining why he wanted to carry out the attack.
“I want whoever is attending that event to leave, to leave either dead or injured,” he said, according to law enforcement.
Mohamud is scheduled to appear in federal court on Monday.
In extreme crises, conservatism can turn to fascism. Here’s how that might play out
5 movie "Back to the Future," Marty McFly (played by Michael J. Fox) travels in a time machine from the 1980s to the 1950s. When he tells people of the '50s he is from the '80s, he is met with skepticism.
1950s person: Then tell me, future boy, who's President of the United States in 1985?
This article first appeared at Salon.com.Marty McFly: Ronald Reagan.
1950s person: Ronald Reagan? The actor? [chuckles in disbelief] Then who's vice president? Jerry Lewis [comedian]?
Who are the young people behind the Catalonia protest violence?
The violent protests that have swept Catalonia over the jailing of nine separatist leaders have involved veteran anarchists and youthful troublemakers as well as outraged separatists, some of whom became radicalised only recently.
"I am 24, have a masters and a job and I never imagined myself setting fire to a barricade with my face masked," said one protester who gave her name only as Aida.
She has joined in protests every day since they erupted in the region after Spain's Supreme Court on Monday sentenced nine Catalan separatist leaders to up to 13 years in jail for sedition over a failed 2017 independence bid.
Body language expert dissects the power dynamic at play in the iconic Nancy Pelosi photo
Last week, President Donald Trump met with Democrats at the White House to discuss the way both sides could work to fix the President's mistakes in Syria. Democrats left the White House saying that the President had another meltdown during the meeting, which prompted Trump to claim Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) was the one who had a meltdown. He then posted photos of Pelosi sitting quietly and another photo of Pelosi standing and pointing at him.
Body language expert Dr. Jack Brown posted the photo and gave his own analysis of what he believed was happening in the photo.
"When a person has little or no empathy — and/or when they're far from their emotional baseline, their ability to interpret how others will view an event becomes dramatically distorted," Brown explained Sunday. "Rarely has this behavioral axiom been better exemplified than last Wednesday at the White House."