US San Bernardino shooter pledged allegiance to Isis

December 5, 2015 5:29 am

The woman who carried out the California mass shooting with her
husband had pledged allegiance to the Islamic State group and its leader
on Facebook, a law enforcement official said Friday, providing the
strongest evidence to date that the rampage may have been an extremist
The official said Tashfeen Malik made her posts under an
alias and deleted them before she and Syed Farook killed 14 people
Wednesday at a holiday party for his co-workers. The Muslim couple were
killed hours later in a gunbattle with police.
Malik, 27, was a
Pakistani who grew up in Saudi Arabia and came to the US in 2014 on a
fiancee visa. Farook, a 28-year-old restaurant health inspector, was
born in Chicago to Pakistani parents and raised in California.
US official said Malik expressed “admiration” for the extremist group’s
leader on Facebook under the alias account. But the official said there
was no sign that anyone affiliated with the Islamic State communicated
back with her.

The two officials were not authorized to discuss the case publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.
FBI has been investigating the shooting at a social service center as a
potential act of but had reached no firm conclusions as of
Thursday, with authorities cautioning that the violence could have
related to a workplace grudge or a combination of motives.
a US intelligence official said on Thursday that Farook had been in
contact with known Islamic extremists on social media.
enforcement officials have long warned that Americans acting in sympathy
with Islamic extremists — though not on direct orders — could launch
an attack inside the US Using slick propaganda, the Islamic State in
particular has urged sympathizers worldwide to commit violence in their
Two weeks ago, with Americans on edge over the Islamic
State attacks in Paris that left 130 people dead, FBI Director James
Comey said that US authorities had no specific or credible intelligence
pointing to an attack on American soil.
Seventy-one people have
been charged in the US since March 2014 in connection with supporting
, including 56 this year, according to a recent report from the
George Washington University Program on Extremism. Though most are men,
“women are taking an increasingly prominent role in the jihadist world,”
the report said.
It was not immediately clear whether Malik
exhibited any support for radical Islamists before she arrived in the US
— or, like scores of others arrested by the FBI, became radicalized
through online or in-person associations after arriving.
receive her visa, Malik was subjected to a vetting process the US
government describes as vigorous. It includes in-person interviews,
fingerprints, checks against terrorist watch lists and reviews of her
family members, travel history and places where she lived and worked.
applying from countries that are home to Islamic extremists — such as
Pakistan — undergo additional scrutiny before the State Department and
Homeland Security approve their applications.
Pakistani intelligence officials said Malik moved as a child with her family to Saudi Arabia 25 years ago.
two officials, who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of
anonymity, said that the family is originally from a town in Punjab
province and that the father initially moved to Saudi Arabia around
three decades ago for work.
Farook had no criminal record and was
not under scrutiny by local or federal law enforcement before the
attack, authorities said.
He and his wife built pipe bombs and
stockpiled thousands of rounds of ammunition for the commando-style
assault Wednesday on a gathering of Farook’s colleagues.
was a person who was successful, who had a good job, a good income, a
wife and a family. What was he missing in his life?” asked Nizaam Ali,
who worshipped with Farook at a mosque in San Bernardino.
said that the couple sprayed as many as 75 rounds into the room before
fleeing and had more than 1,600 rounds left when they were killed. At
home, they had 12 pipe bombs, tools to make more explosives and well
over 4,500 rounds, police said.
The dead ranged in age from 26 to
60. Among the 21 injured were two police officers hurt during the
manhunt, authorities said. Two of the wounded remained in critical
condition Thursday.
The soft-spoken Farook was known to pray every day at San Bernardino’s Dar Al Uloom Al Islamiyah mosque.
last time a friend, Rahemaan Ali, saw him was three weeks ago, when
Farook stopped coming to pray. Rahemaan Ali said Farook seemed happy and
his usual self.

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