November 27th, 2010
06:53 PM ET

FBI: Suspect claimed he wrote jihadist fitness article

A Somali-American teenager arrested Friday on suspicion of plotting to bomb a holiday ceremony in Portland, Oregon, told an undercover FBI employee that he wrote articles published in an English-language jihadist magazine, including a story on fitness, an FBI affidavit says.

Mohamed Osman Mohamud, 19, told the undercover operative last summer that he had written articles for the online magazine Jihad Recollections under a pen name, according to an FBI affidavit filed with Mohamud's arrest warrant.

One of the articles Mohamud claimed to have written was "Getting in shape without weights," which was published in the inaugural issue of Jihad Recollections in April 2009, according to the affidavit.

In the article, the author - identified as Ibn al-Mubarak - writes that jihadists must prepare their bodies for war and "train as hard as possible in order to damage the enemies of Allah as much as possible."

The article implores readers to train without weights, in part because using them is "unrealistic for the Mujahid in the front lines anywhere in the world today," and because gyms are not Islamic environments, with their "music, semi-naked women [and] free mixing."

The piece describes stretches and warm-ups before instructing on ways to sculpt one’s legs (suggestions include walking at least 90 minutes a day, doing interval runs, crawling long distances and sitting against a wall for long periods) and strengthen one’s arms (100 to 150 push-ups per day, pull-ups, walking on hands).

"We find that [weights are] ... a major setback for the Americans and the NATO Crusading army as they cannot go to any battlefront without carrying along with them their bench, squat sets and sometimes even their machines," the article says.

U.S. authorities say Mohamud was arrested in connection with a plan to detonate what he believed to be a vehicle bomb at Portland's Christmas tree lighting on Friday night. He attempted to detonate the device, which was a fake planted by authorities in an undercover operation designed to undermine him, the Justice Department said.

A resident of Corvallis, Oregon, and a student at Oregon State University, Mohamud was arrested on suspicion of attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction, the FBI said. He will make his initial appearance Monday in federal court in Portland, the Justice Department said.

The arrest was the culmination of a long-term undercover operation during which Mohamud, a naturalized U.S. citizen from Somalia, was monitored closely as the alleged plot developed, the Justice Department said. Mohamud made the article claim to an operative involved in that undercover operation, according to the affidavit.

Mohamud said he wrote two other articles for Jihad Recollections, and that he also sent an article to another jihadist publication, Inspire, according to the affidavit. The court document does not identify those articles.

U.S. counterterrorism officials have said Jihad Recollections was produced by former North Carolina resident Samir Khan, who those officials now say they believe is living in Yemen. Intelligence officials also suspect Khan is the driving force behind Inspire.

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Filed under: Crime • Oregon • Somalia • Terrorism
soundoff (282 Responses)
  1. Robert

    The fashionable American past time of "being nice to everyone" has brought in the dregs of the globe. Illegal and legal immigrants alike have degraded our country to no more than a third world nation. It is time to make the example of these terrorists once and for all. Execute this kid and bring Islam to it;s knees as they WANT to do to US!! When will the political machinery get out of the way and let the military do its job. Secure our borders, throw out the riff raff and get on with it. I guess the only thing that will motivate the Liberal Right Wing is for another salvo of "Tower" incidents to blast our people and our way of life to "smitherines" before they are motivated!!!

    November 27, 2010 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • DasLeezard

      Yeah... and to think all the terrorism on US soil started a few hundred years ago, with the coming of the first European Settlers, seeking 'religious freedom' by committing genocide and pushing 'faith' on those they didn't kill. Sounds like history really does repeat itself.

      November 28, 2010 at 2:40 am | Report abuse |
  2. Alex

    Oh noooo, islam isn't a violent religion; but it's followers certainly are! Enough is enough. Freedom of religion my a**. When is this country going to grow a pair??

    November 27, 2010 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • bob

      you're so right! you must be very well versed in history! USA! USA! USA! USA!

      November 28, 2010 at 12:34 am | Report abuse |
  3. Cesar

    @Bostani: No, my X doesn't have such a slim figure.

    November 27, 2010 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Alex

    "Describes stretches and warm-ups before instructing on ways to sculpt one’s legs"? Are the terrorists also watching Jane Fonda's buns workout DVD together in their secret training camps?

    I'm pretty sure our shortest, skinniest soldier could kick any terrorist's ass in an old-school fist fight.

    November 27, 2010 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse |
  5. norlight

    Ouch, Babe... Life is a series of decisions. Have fun in the next chapter of your life, Mohamed. Might be a while before life seems worth living again.

    November 27, 2010 at 8:18 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Jeff

    Judging from Mohamed's mugshot, looks like he should've been doing some exercises for that fat lip.

    November 27, 2010 at 8:24 pm | Report abuse |
  7. MrWonderful

    The fundamentals of playing dead goat ball Vol.1 by Muhammad Al Brazier Recycling Bin Aluminum

    November 27, 2010 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
  8. chuckmartel

    Jihadi fitness trainer? It doesn't end with these animals. Is he claiming that US/NATO forces travel through the battlefield carrying weights? If these dark age primitives weren't potentially dangerous, they would be hilarious. Stupid as they are, it is only a matter of time before one of them has enough luck to hit the US again. Insane to continue importing and accomadating these stinking animals.

    November 27, 2010 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Mike

    Mohamed will realize how awesome free weights are in federal prison.

    November 27, 2010 at 8:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • chuckmartel

      His exercise will be done on all fours.

      November 27, 2010 at 9:29 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Quincy9

    An open letter to Islamic extremists and those who would do harm to others in the name of Islam. I respect your faith and all faiths with equal and humbled reverence. Being one of the great philosophic sects of the world I'm sure that you no doubt know more that I when it comes to the subject. However, my question is, why? What do you want from the American citizens? What did we as people who simply go to work everyday, come home, eat something, go to sleep only to wake up the next day and start all over do to you? "Infidels"? Sure, there are many of us here. Frankly, most of the people in the U.S. don't care about your religion or anyone else's. That's YOUR business. I just want to know what me, my wife and my three precious (to me) children did to you that you would threaten to kill us. I'd love to know. I'm not mocking your faith. It's probably stronger than my own, but ...c'mon... what did our people...NOT our government ...our people (families, friends, generations of loved ones) do to P you off so bad that you're trying to kill us? If you have a problem with our government then take it up with them. 99.999% of us have done nothing to P you off. Heck, most of us never heard of you prior to 9/11... and now wish we hadn't. We lost family, friends, children... futures... people who were just doing their jobs that had no connection to you or thought of you... just people trying to pay their rent, car insurance and maybe buy a bagel on their way to work. Is that so 'infidel' like? I'm sure that there are a great many people in your own society who have a few Indiscretions just like EVERY person on the planet. My point is.... can we PLEASE ALL knock it off?!?!? All of us. Everyone. If you believe in any 'god' then you cannot profess and practice hate. Please think about it.

    November 27, 2010 at 8:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • EgyMan

      Qunicy9: I think you are being simplistic.... you don't have to have done anything you or your wife or kids. At the least you belong to our nation which is regarded negatively in muslim countries, or at best you have nothing to do with it at all, but the religion of peace has a mission to eradicate all non-muslims, you inclusive.

      November 27, 2010 at 9:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • photoman1

      @quincy9 I think egyman is correct. Besides the fact that the US is a largely a christian nation, the radical islamic fascists hold regular citizens responsible because we vote to elect the government who creates the policies they dont like.

      In essence, the US government and US citizens are one and the same to them.

      I'm sure our support for Israel doesnt help things, either.

      November 28, 2010 at 7:50 am | Report abuse |
  11. Thomas

    I hate thinking hateful thoughts toward anyone but this guy makes it awefully hard not to. One look at that primate in-bred lookin punk and I could tell he doesnt belong here. Jihadists are retards? Maybe so. Problem is, sooner or later one of them is going to actually pull it off. And innocent American lives will be lost. Women and beautiful children will be slaughtered while thier folks back home cheer-claiming all the while that thiers is a religion of peace. Murderers, thieves, and terrorists. All are criminals that thrive on the indulgance of society's understanding. Its time for our tolerence to end.

    November 27, 2010 at 8:33 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Bobby

    This is why so many American's speak out about Islam and muslims. None of us know what faction of Islam they actually follow. We do know that there are several violent factions, and as long as we continue to experience situations like this Islam is going to continue to be suspect in the US and so are muslims.

    November 27, 2010 at 8:39 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Nick S

    If he thinks the semi-naked women are a problem in our American gyms, just wait until he experiences a prison gym.

    November 27, 2010 at 8:47 pm | Report abuse |
  14. CHUG

    In 2002, al Qaeda was setting up a jihadist training camp in Oregon. Why Oregon? Don't ask a liberal dem 'cause they don't have a clue!

    November 27, 2010 at 8:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • photoman1

      What an insightful comment. The right wing fascists are quite talented in making stuff up in order to slam dems.

      Where are the WMDs in Iraq? Don't ask a right wing fascist, because they have no clue. But they will lie to your face telling you they are positive they will find them and that the war in Iraq isn't about oil.

      November 28, 2010 at 8:07 am | Report abuse |
  15. AlfredENewman

    What me worry? I live near a highly populated islamic area and I truly believe that like Christians most Muslims are genuinely nice people. There are fringes in every group. That's why we need to up our game in this country. We let the bad apples in before 9/11. Contrary to popular myth you must be a naturalized citizen with a social security card in order to receive welfare. Its a fact. Look it up.

    November 27, 2010 at 8:48 pm | Report abuse |
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