We now return readers to the case of alleged terrorist Hassan Abu-jihaad, the former US Navy signalman banged up for sending Babar Ahmad and Azzam Publications information on when his surface action group was transiting the Strait of Hormuz in 2001. Another alleged crime was buying a few Chechen jihadi videos and tipping the web …
That would be the same USS Cole that got attacked by jihadis?
So lets see - an ex-USN sailor, knowing that a ship has previously been the target of a terror attack that killed 17 US sailors, deliberately passes information on the ship's future movements through a possible attack zone to a known jihadi sympathiser already under investigation. Actually, this traitorous fruitcake had better hope he gets locked up, because I really wouldn't want to be him if his shipmates ever catch him walking down the street!
I am amazed the FBI actually needs more - as a signalman he would have known all about security, as a serving sailor he would have understood the value of the information he passed, and his use of codewords for Usama Bin Liner just goes to show he knew he was doing wrong. What do you have to do to be labelled a spy or a traitor nowadays, do you actually have to pull the trigger itself?
Erm, am I missing something here?
Surely it's not at all surprising that someone who calls himself "Father of Holy War" wanted to be involved in jihad?
Hasn't he already plead guilty by changing his name?
Re: That would be the same USS Cole that got attacked by jihadis?
Sorry people, we had a headlining goof there. The reference to the Cole in one of the emails in the piece triggered the wrong ship name in my head when I was headlining the story. My bad, now fixed. The ship he was actually on was the Benfold.
Waste of Time !
This guy is obviously a complete utter moron, and about as dangerous as mr bean.
American enlisted men aren't exactly the sharpest knives in the drawer, if you get my drift. A rather large proportion are people who couldn't get a job anywhere else and would be on what our transatlantic chums call "welfare" or working in MacBurger Kong. The average British able seaman is an intellectual giant compared to his colonial counterpart, in my experience (Signalman, serving for several years on a Type-12, numerous NATO exercises where I got the opportunity to observe the relative degrees of professionalism between the Royal Navy and our Yankee chums.)
I will say however that their officers are very good indeed and generally as good as if not better than ours, who are often still Hooray-Henries drawn from the "elite" public schools.
Paris Hilton icon because she knows a lot about... ships... something liek that.
They might be giants...
"American enlisted men aren't exactly the sharpest knives in the drawer"
Hmm, let's see. Alan Kay, developer of Smalltalk, force behind the Alto, sometime airman in the USAF. Just think where he (and computing would be) had he had the privilege of serving in the Her Majesty's forces with those giants....
"about as dangerous as mr bean"
Well, that Gordon Brown is quite dangerous actually...
@They might be giants...
You Silly Billy. Don't you understand the concept of generalisation? Stating that "american enlisted men aren't exactly the sharpest knives in the drawer" does not mean that every single one to a man are low in IQ levels. It means that generally if you took a random sample the majority would be low IQ, the rest average, with not many of high IQ.
So Alan Kay was enlisted and he was inteliigent, but that doesn't mean that every other enlisted person was of the same IQ levels. As Tawakalna states, the lower ranks in the US forces are mainly those that can't get a job elsewhere. And why might that be? Because they haven't had much education.
It's not an IQ issue
Like most of our criminals, this fellow is "barking mad". There is way too little notice taken of the mental condition of such people. They are stars in their own exciting movies; reality cannot compare. Converting to Islam and naming yourself Abu Jihad is like converting to Catholicism and naming yourself Sir Galahad -- a pre-teen fantasy. Adults who live in fantasy worlds can be Walter Mitty, of course, but when they have access to the Internet they can be terrorists or "anarchists" or just plain wankers (hey, that's fantasy too).
I recently served 2 weeks on Grand Jury; most of the folks brought in should have been in care of the Mental Health establishment, not the police. Some of the police should have been, as well.
As a citizen of the U.S.A., I suppose I should mention our current government; but that's redundant.
Of course I freaking well understand the concept of generalization. I can click over to El Reg and watch a lot of Brit techies generalize all day about a country of which they clearly know very little.
"As Tawakalna states, the lower ranks in the US forces are mainly those that can't get a job elsewhere..."
Wrong on many levels.
1. Recruiting standards have slipped since Iraq showed signs of going on forever, but if you look at the statistics, they measure up pretty well.
2. Education & intelligence are correlated only so well, however much the meritocrats among us might like to think otherwise.
I don't see anyone pinning a badge on themselves announcing they are Brit techies. So i assume you are generalising all comments as being from Brits?
Real life enlisted
having served for 6 years as a trainer in US Army Intelligence, i have to agree with Tawakalna about the US enlisted. to be fair, there are plenty of lieutenants ("butter bars") fresh from OCS, that are so dangerously stupid that they should be put under a sergeant's charge until they grow a clue, but that is another discussion.
as a group, the "lifers" (those who stay in the service until they retire) are noticeably less intelligent and motivated (there are some exceptions, but they are few). they stay because many of them are allowed to be marginally useful. these marginal types would have trouble adapting to the private sector (which already has more than enough drones). the military is a machine, and as long as you are a suitably shaped cog, you will be allowed to remain.
i don't care what the statistics say. about 140 of the 160+ people in my basic training company would have been more useful as fertilizer. if i offended someone who shares that low level of functionality, then good, they deserve it (perhaps the AC is one?).
if the human race doesn't start breeding for ability soon (instead of just for looks, or because it's fun and easy), we may render ourselves extinct.
Having played a small part in the British armed forces and also having had a fair number of friends in the USAAF based in the UK in times gone by I would say that US military personnel tend to be be either gun fodder or pretty bright. The strange thing is that there seems to be no in between, it was beer and bowling or interested in everything around them. I have to say that the beer and bowling boys out numbered the bright guys by about five to one. Also as another commenter says above the officers were often very good unlike one or two British subbies and a couple of officers in the `intelligence corps´ that have come to my attention, definitely more dangerous than the enemy in a combat zone. No matter what their IQ levels were they were generally OK guys though, most of the US military personnel I have met are decent people regardless of how smart they were. Just a shame about their current president.
As for Mr Abu Jihaad I think he is probably desperately trying to live up to the unwarranted attention he has received from the FBI and from the evidence still failing , I don't think he is much different to some of the yank home grown W.A.S.P. conspiricists that I have met in my travels in the States, Discontent and looking for any explanation for what is wrong or missing in their lives so long as it doesn't involve their own shortcomings.
RE: John Lettice
Actually, Abu-Jihaad is accused of passing secret material relating to the movement of his ship's whole battle group and the best ways to attack them, not just the Benfold alone. This despite his being in the Navy at the time of the Cole attack, and his reported praising of the attack and passing the secrets whilst still enlisted and serving on the USS Benfold. If I wasn't allowed to try him as a traitor and spy, my way of prosecuting this would be to total up the number of sailors on all the ships in the group he betrayed, then try Abu-Jihaad for the same number of conspiracies to commit murder. That should keep the little twit safely locked up until he rots, and serve as a strong message to any other wannabe jihadis.
Lock up the ignoramous and throw away the key
So- Abu-Jihaad is a traitorous fool of questionable intelligence. Surely instead of having to rely on the fickle court system- court martial the ignoramous and lock him up and throw away the key. I think all armed services have perhaps more than their fair share of idiots who like the idea of a uniform and a gun- along with those who truely care about safeguarding the security of their countries and have the intelligence and cop-on to properly recognise events going on around them.
Also- fyi- we're not all British over here, this side of the water- some us might actually be insulted by the insinuation.