The jihadi who shot four US service members in Frankfurt yesterday, killing two, left behind a Facebook account and 127 friends.
His Facebook friends can be broken down into a number of subsets:
• Family, mostly not political
• Friends, mostly not political
• Salafist Islamists, some more political than others
• Jihadis, by definition very political, and inclined towards violence
They can also be broken down by ethnicity: Albanians, Turks, Kurds (who may actually be Turks), Moroccans, and Germans (mostly converts to Islam).
Among the jihadis are some likely or confirmed bad actors. Salahudin Ibn Ja'far comes to mind...
...but there are others. (I'm still not convinced that Ja'far is a serious player, but damn, he sure does know all the right people).
The shooter, Arid Uka AKA Abu Rayyan, may have acted alone. He certainly was the only person on the scene with a gun, shooting and killing. His radical associations online should put to rest any thought that he was a genuinely unconnected lone wolf.
I'd look to his hip hop buddies and their criminal connections when tracing the gun - which he apparently paid very good money for. Fortunately he didn't know how to use it, or it might not have jammed and more people would be dead or wounded.
The problem in this case, as in so many others, is not that he was totally under the radar. I had at least five leads on him sitting on my hard drive before the shooting - I'm sure various governments and their agencies had even more on file. No, the problem is, and will likely remain, threat assessment. I am as certain that we can do a better job of that as I am certain that there is no easy answer to the problem. In an open forum that's all you'll get out of me.
A final note to his jihadi friends, some of whom may read these words: covering your tracks after the blood is spilled is too little, too late. Your buddy's killing of American military personnel has the effect of giving the military side of the American intelligence community a free hand to identify you and track your sorry asses down, one by one (unless of course you'd all like to pile into a single car - that's fine too).
Wait for it, maggots.Posted on 03 March 2011 @ 20:54
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