Domestic Terror Trial for Blogger Starts Next Week
Here's a Boston Herald article on the upcoming trial of the Boston blogger Tarek Mehanna. Like most articles on Mehenna it notes that he the prosecution found a vast library of jihadi materials on his computer.And, like most articles, it completely misses the point: Mehenna is not on trial for owning jihad material, he is on trial for providing material aid to al Qaeda. The particular material support Tarek Mehenna provided was translating Arabic jihadi materials into English at al Qaeda's request. He also conspired with another man to join al Qaeda in Yemen and the pair were in the initial planning stages of a domestic terror attack. The FBI had Mehenna under surveillance and would probably have let the plot develop further had one of Mehenna's co-conspirators not fled the country. Mehenna himself was arrested as he was leaving the country. So, please spare us the "violation the First Amendment" argument. Mehenna's library will be used as an indication of where his sympathies were and his state of mind, not as evidence of his primary crime. His Iskandri blog is still online. Go read it and tell me if you think this is just "some poor innocent victim of Islamophobia", as some activists are claiming. And remember when you read it that this is what he's saying in public. His online work for al Qaeda was done much more under the radar.