Revolting Geek Of Mass Proportions Update (not long before his conversion to Islam, Adam Gadahn wrote in a letter: “I am now, as ever, a revolting geek of mass proportions”). Gadahn, you may recall, is the Al-Qaeda operative who has been indicted for treason — and who, in a videotape introduced by Ayman al-Zawahri himself, was kind enough to invite me personally, along with a few others, to accept Islam.
Anyway, Gadahn — “Azzam the American” — has been profiled in a fascinating New Yorker piece, which I recommend reading in its entirety, as it is full of illuminating information. And now the Minority Report blog (thanks to DFS) has highlighted one largely overlooked little detail: a bogus charity founded by Al-Qaeda operatives and including Gadahn received California state funding for a time. Minority Report doesn’t say, and I am not saying, that California state officials were in cahoots with Al-Qaeda; I am sure this was a case of indifference and ignorance, and an anxiety to “reach out to the Muslim community.” California officials no doubt had no idea of the connections of the people they were dealing with.
And that’s the problem.
Here is the relevant section of the (much larger) New Yorker piece:
In the late nineties, the National Security Council, concerned about possible terrorist attacks around the millennium, asked a team of private terrorism analysts to investigate Deek and Diab’s activities. Rita Katz, who is now the director of the SITE Institute, a nonprofit group that monitors jihadi communiquÃ©s on the Internet, led the investigation. (Katz showed me a videotape of Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman’s 1992 lecture at the Islamic Society.) Katz knew that Deek had obtained American citizenship, and she learned from intelligence reports that he had connections to a terrorist cell based in Montreal. (The cell included Ahmed Ressam, who was involved in the millennium plot to blow up Los Angeles International Airport.) Katz suspected that Deek was working as a coÃ¶rdinator for Al Qaeda groups in the West. She discovered that he had collaborated with Diab in California; the two men had set up a bogus nonprofit group, called Charity Without Borders, in Diab’s name, and Diab had even managed to obtain grants for it from the state. (Gadahn is listed as “crew member” in the charity”s official documents.) Deek and Diab paid the rent on the apartment where Gadahn lived, according to Diab’s ex-wife, and purchased a beat-up Audi for the men to share. Gadahn did not have a license, but he often drove the car on errands.