I just read an article about the new video release of Adam Yahiye Gadahn, an American Al-queda member. The article appeared in the SF Chronicle today and is called, “Calif.-born Al-Qaida member asks that Bush be greeted with bombs.” This was the first I had heard of Gadahn. When I got home I did a little research and watched this video. I find it interesting to hear this from a native English speaker. This is a guy who grew up in California and is only a year older than myself. He is now a high-level member of Al-Qaida! What happened in this guys life that led him to Islamic fundamentalism? In this recent video released on January 6, 2008 he destroyed his American passport and stated,
“In symbolic rejection of the American citizenship that honorable and decent and compassionate people are ashamed to carry, I will now proceed to destroy my American passport. But don’t get too excited, I don’t need it to travel anyway,”
On October 11, 2006 Gadahn was indicted for treason by a federal grand jury. He is the first American charged with treason since Japanese American Tomoya Kawakita was found guilty of treason in 1952. His death sentence was commuted to life imprisonment.
I see striking similarities between Gadahn and Lindh. If Lindh had not been captured would he be friends with Gadahn, or were they friends before he was captured?? Both these guys grew up in California, both converted to Islam at a very young age and both went to Pakistan and became enmeshed in anti-American fundamentalism.
I find these men interesting because they are both of my generation and they have both rejected American imperialism and embraced Islam. Unfortunatley, they have embraced a violent form of the religion and were unable to live pious lives without getting involved in anger and hatred against the inevitable forces of Kali Yuga.