The California shooting is being treated as an act of terrorism by the United States’ Federal Bureau of Investigation as agents try to establish the “radicalization” of the couple who killed 14 and wounded 17 at a Southern California office party Wednesday morning, December 1, 2015. FBI Director James Comey said on Friday that no larger plot has been linked to the slain perpetrators, Syed Rizwan Farook, 28, and his wife Tashfeen Malik, 27.
A Facebook official has revealed that Malik endorsed Islamic State in a post at 11 a.m. Wednesday, as the couple made their move on a San Bernardino social service center and committed the bloodbath with high-powered weapons. According to the Chicago Tribune, a U.S. law enforcement source uncovered Malik’s Facebook alias under which she pledged allegiance to the Islamic State and its leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Islamic State news service Aamaq called Malik and Farook “supporters” of ISIS but did not claim responsibility for the attack.
Some four and a half hours after the massacre, police chased a black Ford SUV from the town of Redlands back to San Bernardino, and engaged the two occupants, Farook and Malik, in a fierce gun battle, resulting in their deaths.
On the second day of the investigation, FBI Director Comey admitted there “is a lot of evidence that doesn’t quite make sense.” In a statement to reporters, he broached the topic of “radicalization,” showing his naïveté about the word as it pertains to followers of Mohammed.
“The investigation so far has developed indications of radicalization by the killers and of potential inspiration by foreign terrorist organizations.”
Doyle Miller, 81, the California landlord of the San Bernardino shooting suspects, described Syed Farook as a “nice, clean-cut young man.” Miller made his comment to reporters who flocked to the San Bernardino rental apartment where Syed Farook and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, lived with their 6-month-old girl – cared for elsewhere by Farook’s mother at the time of the shooting.
Farook’s friends, who knew him from his daily prayers at a mosque in San Bernardino, said they had no inkling of a violent nature behind his soft-spoken facade. They said Farook told them that he’d met his wife online. Attorneys representing Farook’s family said Friday that no one within his family circle suspected Farook and his wife of being extremists.
According to WCVB, neither Farook nor his wife had gotten into trouble with the law in the past, and neither one was in any list of radicalized people.
Family lawyer Mohammad Abuershaid said that Farook traveled twice to Saudi Arabia, first in 2013 for the Hajj or mandatory pilgrimage to Mecca every Muslim takes at least once in his lifetime, then in 2014 to marry Malik, a Pakistani national he’d met through an online dating service. Attesting that Farook and Malik “kept to themselves” prior to the California shooting, Abuershaid rejected speculations of Islamist extremism leading to the mass killing. The lawyer detected nothing about Malik that was “extreme” besides her head covering and described Farook as “a normal guy, in every sense of the word.”
The profiles emerging about the couple were of normal, non-extremist types, quietly living the American dream with no “radicalization” that would lead to a California shooting.
The only thing that stood out, according to Police Chief Jarrod Burguan of San Bernardino, California, was that Farook appeared angry when he suddenly left the holiday banquet at the center for the disabled, only to return heavily armed and start shooting.
Taqiyya appears to have played a part in the California shooting incident. In a report by the Washington Post, GOP presidential hopeful Ben Carson defines the Muslim practice of taqiyya as a component of Sharia that allows and even “encourages you to lie to achieve your goals.”
“To carry out such a deception,” Qur’an 3:28, Ibn Kathir, admonishes a friendly front when dealing with unbelievers. According to the Los Angeles Times, Farook’s co-workers even threw a baby shower for him recently, making it even more difficult for the California shooting to comprehend.
“We smile in the face of some people although our hearts curse them.”
Julie Swann-Paez, a health department inspector shot in the leg and abdomen, leaving her with a shattered pelvis, was told that her masked shooter was her co-worker Farook. Her response was with disbelief.
“That doesn’t make sense. They were congratulating him for having a baby.”
Qur’an, Sura 9:123 commands Muslims to make war on the unbelievers who live around them. Qur’an, Sura 8:12 speaks of instilling terror into the hearts of unbelievers, such as experienced by the victims of the California shooting.
The actions of California couple Farook and Malik were simply those of conscientious believers, with no need for radicalization to set them off shooting.
[Photo by Shawn M. Haffey/Getty Images]