Thursday, February 22, 2007

Sulejman the Mysterious

With the virtual avalanche of news coverage 24/7 on Anna Nicole Smith and Britney Spears, the story of Sulejmen Talovic has disappeared from the media radar, not that they had much interest once they found out he was a Muslin possibly afflicted with Sudden Jihadi Syndrome.
Sulejmen Talovic does not really fit the SJS pattern either. He was not exactly a law-abiding Muslim. At the age of 12 he pulled a knife on a young girl and threatened her life. Shortly afterwards there was a repeat performance involving his Bosnian landlord. Since his family was war refugees, Talovic got off with repeated warnings. Later he was picked up for shoplifting. While attending Horizonte Instruction and Training Center, in November 2004, the lad was disciplined after he was caught looking up AK-47s on the Internet. Not long after that incident he dropped out of school for good. Apparently, Talovic bided his time until his 18th birthday when his juvie record was expunged and he could purchase weapons legally.

Obviously he was a troubled teen, but a jihadist?

Little is known of his personal life, except that he regularly attended Friday prayers at the al Noor Mosque near the site of the shooting, but stopped when he began working full time at a uniform services company. Oddly, that behavior also fits the pattern of the jihadist, who will often stop attending mosque and frequently will go to great lengths to appear non-religious. Pipes notes that it is common for Islamists to surreptitiously adopt radical Islam, so it is not surprising when his relatives and neighbors say that he was a normal, gentle if perhaps high-strung teen.
You know if this kid were a Mormon or born-again Christian there would be wall-to-wall coverage, calls for gun control, etc. In fact, nearly eight years after Columbine, we're still often reminded of it. Why the media blackout in this case after just over a week?

UPDATE: Michelle notes this Hot Air report, with more at Jihad Watch.
The FBI has ruled out Islamic terrorism as a factor in the Talovic killings. One hopes that agents have done so after sufficient consideration of the possibility – which seems to have been absent from other cases with some similarities to that of Talovic. But in the wake of this, some have rushed to condemn me and others who publicly noted the mainstream media’s reluctance to identify Talovic as a Muslim, and to explore the possibility that his killings were jihad-related. This criticism was misplaced, for that reluctance is real, but it does not apply to all religions – as the Ahmed and Ebrahami cases show. Ibrahim Ahmed is, of course, probably a Muslim, and his murderous rage may have been reinforced by Islam’s belief that those who insult Islam have forfeited their right to live. The refusal of the Associated Press even to consider such possibilities, and its inconsistency in doing so, is readily apparent.

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