Faster, Please!

They're Shi'ites, the JFK Terrorists

Steve Schwartz digs into the story, and finds an Iranian connection:

The four men named in the case…are products of Muslim minorities in the Caribbean – one lived in Trinidad, an island off the coast of Venezuela that was the alleged center for their planning; three are from Guyana, on the mainland nearby…

Early media reports have concentrated on the links of JFK suspects Abdul Kadir and Kareem Ibrahim with Jamaat al-Muslimeen – an eccentric Sunni cult that launched a bloody 1990 attempt to overthrow Trinidad’s government.

But Kadir, 55, and Ibrahim, 56, are Shia Muslims – and thus members of a tiny minority within a minority. (Muslims in Guyana and Trinidad are overwhelmingly Sunnis, with ethnic backgrounds in India and east Africa.) This is apparently the first case of Shia Muslims plotting a U.S. terror attack.

When he was arrested in Trinidad last Friday, Kadir was boarding a plane for Venezuela, en route to a religious conference in Iran. Ibrahim is also a Shia cleric, serving as imam in a Trinidad mosque.

Born Michael Seaforth, Kadir became Muslim in the early ’70s. He went to Iran for intensive study in theology and returned as a cleric. (He later sent his son Salim and daughter Sauda to the Iranian religious center of Qom for theological training.) But he also developed political interests, having won election to Guyana’s parliament as a member of the leftist People’s National Congress/Reform, and has a background as a theorist of the party’s socialist ideology.

It’s a global terrorist network, and we can be quite sure that there are lots of them in this country. As always, “the mosque” is central. Not all mosques are pro-terrorist, but virtually all terrorists were recruited via a mosque.