Minnesota men at large

In today’s Star Tribune Stephen Montemayor takes a look at recently unsealed FBI search warrants in ongoing Minnesota terrorism investigations. Here is the opening of his story:

The former Edison High School theater student had changed his Facebook name to “Mujahid Ibrahim Abu Tuabah.” He wrote reverently of four Twin Cities friends who had joined the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, and boasted that the terror group “will never be defeated.”

Asked online if he was ready for jihad himself, he paused: “I have to make my faith stronger if I want to die as a martyr,” the Minneapolis 19-year-old wrote, likely unaware that he was corresponding with an undercover New York officer.

Two years later, he is still in Minneapolis and, according to interviews and court records reviewed by the Star Tribune, one of at least a half-dozen Minnesotans at the center of ongoing FBI investigations into ISIS support.

The cases in­clude a 35-year-old fa­ther of four al­leg­ed­ly en­listed to help edit a popu­lar ISIS propa­ganda mag­a­zine, a Sauk Rapids hack­er re­port­ed to the FBI by fel­low hack­ers trou­bled by his boasts of ji­ha­dist con­nec­tions, and a south met­ro ju­jit­su instruc­tor who helped ra­tion­al­ize su­i­cide at­tacks for a man since con­victed on ter­ror­ism charges in In­di­an­a.

More than a year af­ter the fed­er­al gov­ern­ment com­pleted its land­mark pros­e­cu­tion of 11 young Twin Cities men — the larg­est ter­ror­ism con­spir­a­cy case ever charged in the Unit­ed States — the re­cords show that the FBI is still prob­ing the pos­si­bil­i­ty of home­grown ter­ror­ists in the state.

We have a serious problem in Minnesota. It is augmented every day by the continuing stream of Somali Muslim immigrants to Minnesota along with the growing infrastructure of mosques and Islamist organizations. Open discussion of the problem is stigmatized and suppressed as symptomatic of “Islamophobia.” Montemayor’s article is a useful reminder that the problem isn’t going away. It is, rather, something like a clear and present danger.

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