Radical Yemeni Cleric Appears from Hiding - NBC New York

Radical Yemeni Cleric Appears from Hiding



    Radical Yemeni Cleric Appears from Hiding
    Screenshots of an expected new video recording featuring most wanted Yemeni-American cleric Anwar al-Awlaki have been posted on Al-Qaida Internet chat forums

    The radical Yemeni cleric who is connected to numerous terror plots has made a new video showing he is still alive and very much a threat.    

    Anwar al-Awlaki, whose radical sermons have been cited by terrorists involved in the Times Square, Fort Dix, Fort Hood and Christmas Day bomb plots, is expected to call for more attacks on the U.S. in the video that is set to be posted soon on the Internet. 

    In April, President Obama approved the targeted killing of Awlaki. Drone strike attempts so far have proved unsuccessful in killing the radical preacher, who holds U.S. citizenship. 

    U.S. officials have also pressed the weak central government of Yemen to help track him. The video is expected to carry more of his calls for terror strikes against the West.

     Al-Awlaki was in the U.S. before the 9-11 attacks and is believed to have preached to some of the hijackers. Some officials have alleged the preacher was part of a support network here in the U.S. for those terrorists. 

    After the attacks, al-Awlaki went to Yemen were he became increasingly radicalized calling for bombings and killings of non-Muslims.  Officials now believe he is playing an active role in organizing and inspiring specific terror plots on U.S. targets.

    In a March 2010 sermon, he said, "I eventually came to the conclusion that jihad against America is binding upon myself just as it is binding upon every other able Muslim."

    U.S. authorities consider al-Awalki a recruiter for al Qaeda. He is known to have met with Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab -- the man who tried to set off a bomb on a plane bound for Detroit on Christmas Day.

    He also exchanged more than a dozen emails with Nidal Malki Hassan, who later went on the shooting rampage at Fort Hood.  Times Square bomber Faisal Shaizad and the Fort Dix terror suspects also said he they were followers of al-Awalki's sermons.

    Radical Islamic websites with known ties to al Qaeda announced the planned release of the video featuring al-Awlaki.