Chicago resident Shaker Masri was planning to fly to Somalia yesterday to join a militant group and train as a suicide bomber but the FBI got to him first, authorities say. Masri—a US citizen born in Alabama—discussed his travel plans and his desire to blow up "infidels" with a work colleague who was actually an FBI informant who had been ordered to befriend him, the Chicago Tribune reports.
Masri—who praised radical cleric Anwar al-Awlaki—told the informant that he planned to join al-Shabab and al-Qaeda and that he had already made contact with recruiters, federal officials say. "There is growing concern of this recruitment in the US,” a terrorism expert tells the Christian Science Monitor. Masri "was obviously not very bright. But for every one you catch, how many out there do you not catch?"