June 30, 2010

"Dirty Bomber" Adnan Shukrijumah Linked to Thwarted NYC Subway Bombing, Met with Najibullah Zazi [UPDATE: Up to 3 in US met with him]

Adnan Shukrijumah

UPDATE: It looks like another of the NYC Plotters, Zarein Ahmedzay, definitely met with Shukrijumah and that Zazi and one other may have met with him. See end of post for details.

Adnan G. El Shukrijumah may have met with one of the men involved in the failed al Qaeda plot to blow up the New York City subway. Press reports do not indicate who Shukrijumah met with, but the plot's leader was a Colorado man named Najibullah Zazi.

Adnan Shukrijumah is a wanted al Qaeda terrorist who was at one time suspected of planning a dirty bomb attack against the US. Shukrijumah was born in Saudi Arabia but raised in the US. At one time alerts were issued that he might try and cross into the US through Mexico. There is a $5 million reward for information on his whereabouts from the FBI. [UPDATE: Michelle has some links on the Mexican connection]

Zazi may have met Shukrijumah in an al Qaeda camp in 2008. The Washington Post claims that Shukrijumah "is among the top candidates to be al-Qaida's next head of external operations".

Najibullah Zazi

This would make sense given that the plot to blow up the subway is said to have been ordered by Saleh al-Somali, al Qaeda's former head of external operations, since killed in a Predator strike (Allahu-akbar!). Zazi originally went to Pakistan to join the Taliban, but was recruited by al-Somali to join al Qaeda instead.

If Zazi met with Shukrijumah, then it would have been in Waziristan. Meaning the the al Qaeda operative was in Pakistan in 2008, and not in Central America as some have speculated.

Washington Post:

Authorities believe that Adnan Shukrijumah (ahd-NAHN' el SHOOK'-ree joohm-HAH') met with one of the would-be suicide bombers in a plot that Attorney General Eric Holder called one of the most dangerous since 9/11.

Officials say Shukrijumah is among the top candidates to be al-Qaida's next head of external operations, the man in charge of planning attacks worldwide.

One American born member of al Qaeda meets with an al Qaeda leader who was raised in Florida. Not to mention Fort Hood shooter Nidal Hasan, Little Rock recruitment center shooter Abdulhakim Muhammad, and nearly two dozen other Americans who, like Zazi, failed to kill any one before they caught.

Are we seeing a pattern here?

Also, this reminds me that CurrentTV is airing a documentary on Omar Hammami tonight. He's the Alabama man who is now in Somalia fighting with the local al Qaeda affiliate.

Zarein Ahmedzay

UPDATE: News stories finally breaking on this. So far, this one is the best and it confirms that it was someone in the Zazi plot who met with Shukrijumah, but not necessarily Zazi himself. His friend, Zarein Ahmedzay is the one named as meeting with Shukrijumah. Zazi may have met him:

The trio's [ed: Zazi and his two friends Adis Medunjanin and Zarein Ahmedzay] engthy odyssey took them from their homes in Queens to the mountainous, lawless frontier in northwest Pakistan, the front line of the U.S. war on terrorism....

... the men regrouped in Peshawar and were recruited to meet an al-Qaida facilitator at local mosque in Peshawar...

Once they passed that initial test, Ahmed drove them to North Waziristan and delivered them to a rudimentary terrorist camp. The three received weapons training, but al-Qaida had bigger plans for the men than the Afghanistan front line.

Salah al-Somali, then the head of external operations, and Rashid Rauf, a British militant linked to a 2006 jetliner bomb plot, explained to the three men that they were more useful as suicide bombers in the United States.

It was at that camp that counterterrorism officials believe Ahmedzay, and perhaps the other two men, met Shukrijumah, one of al-Qaida's up-and-coming figures...

The trio completed about two weeks of training and left the camp with the promise of returning. But only Zazi made the trip back to the Waziristan to take a course on explosives.

Hmmmm, three guys from the US. All of them in al Qaeda camps.

What is this saying about home-grown terror in the US? It's far worse than most think.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:33 PM | Comments |