WHY SHE? JOURNEY OF A LONE-WOLF TERRORIST TO THE US
SHE is in the center of all investigations of the FBI and CIA now:
Tashfeen Malik (29).
Together with her husband Syed Rizwan Farook (28), she killed 14 and wounded 21 people in San Bernadino.
This shooting was the deadliest act of terrorism on U.S. soil since 9/11.
What do we know about her life so far?
– Born in Pakistan. Moved to Saudi Arabia when she was four years old. Saudi Arabia is an ultra-conservative country, where all of the attackers of 9/11 came from.
– In 2007 she returned to Pakistan to study at Bahuddin Zakriya University in Multan to become a pharmacist and stayed until 2012. She was said to be a brilliant student.
This region of Punjab is a stronghold of extremist groups, the hate-Islamists, with ties to al Qaeda.
In 2009 she started paying more attention to Islamic studies than to pharmacology. She spent her evenings to a madrassa, run by the ultra-conservative Wahhabi branch of Sunni Islam, that is based in Saudi Arabia. She became religious, focused on Islamic teachings, and lost her interest in her main studies.
– She is linked to her native country’s most notorious radical mosque, the Red Mosque in Islamabad, an Islamic hate-propaganda institution.
– She met her husband on a Muslim dating website. The director of the FBI,James Comey, said Tashfeen Malik and husband Syed Farook spoke of jihad and martyrdom during conversations on an online dating service in late 2013
– They married in summer 2014 in Mecca in Saudi Arabia.
– She gave birth to a daughter only six months ago.
– Tashfeen Malik was ultra-conservative like her father, wearing a niqab, leaving only her eyes exposed, even in the United States She did not drive or interact with male family members. She stayed in the car when her husband prayed at the mosque.
– She consumed online propaganda by ISIS.
– She was a very lone wolf. She had no friends and was isolated in San Bernardino.
– The relatives of her husband didn’t know the couple held radical views. Syed Rizwan Farook’s sister, Saira Khan, told CBS News: “I can never imagine my brother or my sister-in-law doing something like this, especially because they were happily married, they had a beautiful six-month-old daughter,”
The mass shooting may have been inspired by ISIS, but ISIS did not order the attack directly. The killing was an act of so-called ‘lone-wolf terrorism’ by a self-radicalized Muslim couple in the United States.
A lone wolf or lone-wolf terrorist is someone who commits violent acts in support of some group, movement, or ideology, but who does so alone, outside of any command structure and without material assistance from any group.
The wife was inspired by ISIS, but unlike the attackers in Paris, she was not in the chain of command.
Neither attacker shouted “Allah is great” or left radical Islamic messages, as terrorists did in Paris and other terror events.
But one thing is certain: it was a terror attack, and there may be worse attacks planed.
1.Today ISIS described the two on radio as “supporters” of the terror group.
2. Female shooter Tashfeen Malik posted a pledge of allegiance to ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi on Facebook, on an account with a different name.
3. They had 12 simple homemade pipe bombs and a lot of ammunition (5000) at their house.
4. Both erased their digital footprint a day in advance of the attack, deleting email accounts, disposing of hard drives and smashing their cell phones.
5. Syed Rizan Farook had a dispute with a Jewish colleague about Islam. He was teased by colleagues because of his long beard. Was revenge a catalyst for the shooting? Did they act irrationally, and earlier than planed? Was another, grander attack planed with the many pipe bombs?
6. Always kind and calm employee Farook could be radicalized , maybe while visiting Saudi Arabia, where he met his Pakistani wife, or possibliy online, or influenced by his new spouse. The Los Angeles Times quoted a federal law enforcement officer reporting that Farook had contact with two militant groups overseas, among them the al Nusra Front in Syria, affiliated with al Qaeda.
Photo released by FBI