Would-Be Suicide Bomber Targeted Kansas Army Base

John T. Booker

John T. Booker

IPT, by Abha Shankar  •  Apr 10, 2015

A year ago, he wanted to join the U.S. Army to kill his fellow soldiers. When that didn’t work, 20-year-old John T. Booker repeatedly expressed his desire to join the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) or commit a suicide attack in the United States on the terrorist group’s behalf.

Booker, a convert to Islam who changed his name to Mohammed Abdullah Hassan, said American soldiers are enemies to Muslims, and the Quran sanctions killing enemies anywhere.

FBI agents arrested Booker Friday morning just outside Fort Riley, a military base near Manhattan, Kan. He was driving a van loaded with what he thought was 1,000 pounds of explosives. In fact, the bomb was rendered inert by FBI agents and informants. He is charged with attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction, attempting to blow up government property and providing material support to the Islamic State.

In conversations with an FBI informant, Booker repeatedly expressed his intent to kill. “I will kill any kuffar. I will follow any place … if I was with [the Islamic State] and they said look, we are going to the White House right now … I would go with them without any question,” he said in November.

He was rejected by the Army in March 2014, after someone alerted authorities to Facebook posts extolling violent jihad and expressing his desire to kill American soldiers. “I will soon be leaving you forever so goodbye! I’m going to wage jihad and hopes that I die.” In another post the same month, he said: “Getting ready to be killed in jihad is a HUGE adrenaline rush!!! I am so nervous. NOT because I’m scared to die but I am eager to meet my lord.”

Booker told FBI agents at that time he wanted to enlist “to commit an insider attack against American soldiers like Major Nidal Hassan had done at Fort Hood, Texas.”

For reasons that aren’t clear, Booker was left alone until October, when an informant started talking with him. Booker suggested several ideas for terrorist attacks, mentioning Fort Riley as an attractive target “because the post is famous and there are a lot of soldiers stationed there.”

He also said “he wanted to see the fear in the kuffar’s eyes as he pushed the button and they ran for their lives,” the criminal complaint filed Friday said.

Last month, Booker said he wanted to emulate a suicide truck bombing by an American known as “Jihadi Joe.” Booker bought supplies to make a car-bomb from a list the informants provided. He made two martyrdom videos, including one in which he gave his bayah [pledge of allegiance] to Islamic State leader Abu Bakr Al Baghdadi and urged Muslims to support them.

The other video, recorded Wednesday, shows Booker describing his 1,000-pound ammonium nitrate bomb. “Inshallah, this will kill many kuffar [nonbelievers]. This message is to you America. You sit in your homes and you think that this war is just over in Iraq . . . we today we will bring the Islamic State straight to your doorstep. You think this is just a game … when this bomb blows up and kills as many kuffar as possible, maybe then you’ll realize it.”

Agents arrested him just outside Fort Riley, at a little-used gate Booker thought would get him onto the base.

He faces a maximum sentence of life in prison if convicted.

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Assessment: Booker is the 21st person arrested this year in connection with terror plots on US soil on behalf of the Islamic State or having the desire to join the terrorist organization in Syria. We continue seeing the escalation of wannabe jihadists on US soil from being sympathetic to becoming actively involved. Law enforcement from the local through federal level was successful in monitoring Booker and preventing him from carrying out an actual attack. The greater issue at hand is those that are not known without any type of surveillance monitoring their activities.
For every individual that has been arrested in connection with wanting to join the Islamic State or Al Qaeda there are 5 to 10, possibly more, that are unknown and therefore the most dangerous threat to US security. The public and particularly family members need to pay close attention to what their friends or family are getting involved. Years ago we used to teach our kids to stay away from bad influences. Jihadist movements are about as bad of an influence as they can come in contact.
The US government needs to put out public service announcements that are actually effective in deterring people from being susceptible to or joining radical Islamic movements such as Islamic State. In multiple articles we have published we have pointed out the dangers of homegrown terrorist threats on US soil as well as in countries of origin of other wannabe jihadists. This threat continues to grow and will morph and become more problematic if steps are not taken to curtail it now. Each year since 2013 we’ve seen the numbers of jihadists from the US and other western nations growing.
The US government and local community leaders need to be more proactive in engaging the local mosques to get those leaders to engage in moderation of their messages and reach out to wayward youth that may be susceptible to jihadist recruitment methodology. Federal and local law enforcement and intelligence need to have close coordination with the military to ensure potential future attacks are also thwarted.Military personnel need to maintain a high level of vigilance in and around military facility entrances in particular.

As we have seen in numerous other incidents involving lone wolf style attacks or wannabe lone wolves they have been recent converts. These are people that have converted to Islam within the past three years. While this isn’t always the case it is a frequent indicator. Many of them have been at least somewhat vocal in their desire to join in jihad in Syria or Iraq or to conduct an attack on US soil. They either talk to others about it or have blatantly posted about it on social media like Facebook.

500 Ft. Riley Soldiers Deployed To Iraq


It’s unclear as to whether they will be wearing boots or not.

Truth Revolt, By Larry O’Connor:

The “Big Red One” is stepping up yet again. 500 troops from the Army’s 1st Infantry are to deploy to Iraq from Fort Riley, Kansas next month.

Fox News has details from the Pentagon’s announcement Thursday:

More than 200 hundred of the soldiers will be based in Iraq at U.S. Joint Operations Centers (JOCs) in Baghdad and the Kurdish capital of Irbil, and the rest of the contingent will operate out of U.S. bases in the region under the U.S. Central Command, Rear Adm. John Kirby, the Pentagon press secretary, said at a Pentagon briefing.

The initial plan was to have 138 of the troops at the operations center in Baghdad, 68 at the operations center in Irbil and 10 at the Iraqi Defense Ministry, Kirby said. The 200-plus troops will be part of the 475-troop contingent President Barack Obama authorized last month to serve in Iraq as advisers to the Iraqi National Security forces and the Kurdish Peshmerga forces.

However, the 200 from the 1st ID will not “embed” with the other advisers at the brigade and headquarters levels with the Iraqi and Kurdish forces, Kirby said. Instead, the 1st ID troops will perform duties at the JOCs, he said.

This is the first deployment of US troops since America pulled out all remaining forces in 2011 when President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton were unable to reach a Status of Forces agreement with the Iraqi government.

The President has insisted that American troops will not be used in any combat role in the current offensive against ISIS. The local station in Ft. Riley’s Kansas, KMBC, says that local commanders insist the troops will be used only in an advisory capacity in Iraq.

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Army teams going to Africa as terror threat grows


Associated Press - In this Thursday, Sept. 8, 2011 photo, Gen. Carter Ham, head of the U.S. African command, attends a conference on terrorism in the Sahara in Algiers, Algeria.

Associated Press – In this Thursday, Sept. 8, 2011 photo, Gen. Carter Ham, head of the U.S. African command, attends a conference on terrorism in the Sahara in Algiers, Algeria.


WASHINGTON (AP) — A U.S. Army brigade will begin sending small teams into as many as 35 African nations early next year, part of an intensifying Pentagon effort to train countries to battle extremists and give the U.S. a ready and trained force to dispatch to Africa if crises requiring the U.S. military emerge.

The teams will be limited to training and equipping efforts, and will not be permitted to conduct military operations without specific, additional approvals from the secretary of defense.

The sharper focus on Africa by the U.S. comes against a backdrop of widespread insurgent violence across North Africa, and as the African Union and other nations discuss military intervention in northern Mali.

The terror threat from al-Qaida linked groups in Africa has been growing steadily, particularly with the rise of the extremist Islamist sect Boko Haram in Nigeria. Officials also believe that the Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, which killed the ambassador and three other Americans, may have been carried out by those who had ties to al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb.

This first-of-its-kind brigade assignment — involving teams from the 2nd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division — will target countries such as Libya, Sudan, Algeria and Niger, where al-Qaida-linked groups have been active. It also will assist nations like Kenya and Uganda that have been battling al-Shabab militants on the front lines in Somalia.

Gen. Carter Ham, the top U.S. commander in Africa, noted that the brigade has a small drone capability that could be useful in Africa. But he also acknowledged that he would need special permission to tap it for that kind of mission.

“If they want them for (military) operations, the brigade is our first sourcing solution because they’re prepared,” said Gen. David Rodriguez, the head of U.S. Army Forces Command. “But that has to go back to the secretary of defense to get an execute order.”

Already the U.S. military has plans for nearly 100 different exercises, training programs and other activities across the widely diverse continent. But the new program faces significant cultural and language challenges, as well as nagging questions about how many of the lower-level enlisted members of the brigade, based in Fort Riley, Kan., will participate, since the teams would largely be made up of more senior enlisted troops and officers. A full brigade numbers about 3,500, but the teams could range from just a few people to a company of about 200. In rare cases for certain exercises, it could be a battalion, which would number about 800.

To bridge the cultural gaps with the African militaries, the Army is reaching out across the services, the embassies and a network of professional organizations to find troops and experts that are from some of the African countries. The experts can be used during training, and the troops can both advise or travel with the teams as they begin the program.

Read more at news.yahoo.com