Islamic State recruits broadly, not just fighters

FILE - In this Oct. 22,2 104 file photo, the apartment building in Aurora, Colo., which police say is the home of two of the three teenage girls who, according to U.S. authorities, were en route to join the Islamic State group in Syria when they were stopped at an airport in Germany. The three teenage girls from Colorado swapped Twitter messages about marriage and religion with recruiters for the Islamic State group, then set out for Syria with passports and thousands of dollars in stolen cash. Authorities intercepted them in Germany, then returned them to their families without criminal charges.  (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — As it looks to expand its territorial base across broad swaths of Iraq and Syria, the Islamic State group is recruiting for more than just fighters

The extremist organization also has been targeting its sophisticated propaganda to entice potential wives and professionals such as doctors, accountants and engineers in its efforts to build a new society.

Among those it has lured were three teenage girls from Colorado, who set out for Syria this fall after swapping Twitter messages about marriage and religion with IS recruiters, and a young woman who sought to fight there — or failing that, to use her nursing skills. It’s a diverse pool of recruits whose motives perplex Western governments seeking to combat the flow.

The group “is issuing a bit of a siren song through social media, trying to attract people to their so-called caliphate,” FBI Director James Comey told reporters. “And among the people they’re trying to attract are young women to be brides for these jihadis.” Continue reading

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Former FBI terrorism expert: Sochi terrorism threat is unique

By Jacqueline Klimas The Washington Times Tuesday, January 21, 2014

 

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Don Borelli, a former member of the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force, said the terrorist threat in Sochi, Russia, is unique because officials already know terrorists are planning an attack in Sochi sometime during the Olympics.

“We rarely get a specific event, a specific time,” he said Tuesday on CNN. “This type of threat, they’ve thrown the gauntlet down.” Continue reading

The ‘lone wolf’ — the unknowable face of terror

By Paul Cruickshank and Tim Lister

February 18, 2012 — Updated 1434 GMT (2234 HKT)

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Amine El Khalifi is charged with plotting to bomb the U.S. Capitol.

STORY HIGHLIGHTS

  • Amine El Khalifi is charged with attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction
  • He is alleged to have worked with others he believed to be al Qaeda operatives
  • Terrorism cases where individuals act alone are on the rise, experts say
  • In many ways, such cases are the worst nightmare of counterterrorism officials

(CNN) — The arrest of a 29-year-old Moroccan living illegally in the United States has focused attention again on the danger posed by “lone-wolf” terrorists.

Amine El Khalifi has been charged with plotting to carry out a bombing on the U.S. Capitol and attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction against federal property.

He is alleged to have worked with others he believed to be al Qaeda operatives, who provided him with a suicide vest and conducted a demonstration of explosives in a quarry in West Virginia, according to a Department of Justice affidavit.

For more than a year, undercover agents were in contact with El Khalifi after his intentions became known during an ongoing criminal investigation, according to one source.

According to the affidavit, an FBI informant brought El Khalifi, who was arrested Friday, to the attention of law enforcement in January 2011 after he told others at an Arlington residence that “the group needed to be ready for war.”

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FBI has person of interest after pipe bomb and propane tanks found at Southwest Plaza

Colorado : Homeland Security NewsThe FBI says it has identified a person of interest after a pipe bomb was found at Southwest Plaza Mall on Wednesday, 9Wants to Know has learned. The pipe bomb was found after the mall was evacuated when a fire broke out.Investigators say two propane tanks were also found at the heart of the fire, in close proximity to the pipe bomb, and the FBI is investigating the incident as a case of domestic terrorism.The FBI released two surveillance pictures of the person of interest on Wednesday night.

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Editorial: FBI’s Christmas bomber treatment may have cost terrorism intelligence

Last Updated: January 26. 2010 1:00AM

The Detroit News

Lack of full communication between the Justice Department and other key members of the intelligence community immediately following the arrest of would-be airplane bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab reveals counterterrorism officials in disarray during the Christmas Day incident.

Abdulmutallab was quickly funneled into the civilian trial system by the FBI after he was arrested and taken from Northwest Flight 253 from Amsterdam to Detroit, where his attempt to blow up the plane with an underpants bomb was foiled by passengers and crew. According to one report, even after a brief consultation between Justice Department and U.S. intelligence officials, there was never any consideration about whether he would be tried in a civilian court or held for a military tribunal.

Reportedly, he made incriminating statements and described his activities and training in Yemen by an al-Qaida offshoot to U.S. Customs officers and later to an initial team of FBI agents who did not inform him of the rights of domestic criminal defendants. Continue reading

Smaller terror plots posing new threats

Two recent terrorism cases in the United States have officials worried that Al-Qaida is changing tactics.

By DAVID JOHNSTON and ERIC SCHMITT , New York Times

Last update: October 31, 2009 – 7:16 PM

WASHINGTON – After disrupting two recent terrorism plots, U.S. intelligence officials are increasingly concerned that extremist groups in Pakistan linked to Al-Qaida are planning smaller operations in the United States that are harder to detect but more likely to succeed than the spectacular attacks they once emphasized, senior counterterrorism officials say. Continue reading

MOHAMMED ZAZI INDICTED FOR FALSE STATEMENT INVOLVING INTERNATIONAL AND DOMESTIC TERRORISM DENVER

Oct 09, 2009 (JUSTICE DEPARTMENT DOCUMENTS AND PUBLICATIONS/ContentWorks via COMTEX) — David M. Gaouette United States Attorney District of Colorado THURSDAY, OCTOBER 8, 2009 PHONE: 303-454-0243 MOHAMMED ZAZI INDICTED FOR FALSE STATEMENT INVOLVING INTERNATIONAL AND DOMESTIC TERRORISM DENVER – Mohammed Zazi, age 53, who is presently residing in Aurora, Colorado, was indicted today by a federal grand jury in Denver for making a false statement in a matter involving international and domestic terrorism, United States Attorney David Gaouette and Denver FBI Special Agent in Charge James Davis announced. Zazi is presently free on a $50,000 unsecured bond, with the condition that he be under electronic monitoring by the court. He is scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court in Denver (at 901 19th Street) tomorrow, Friday, October 9, 2009, at 1:30 pm, in Courtroom A201 before Magistrate Judge Craig B. Shaffer. Continue reading