The head of the Federal Bureau of Investigation offered new details on Wednesday surrounding the radicalization of the Islamic terrorists responsible for the San Bernardino attacks. FBI Director James Comey told the Senate Judiciary Committee during testimony on Capitol Hill Wednesday that both individuals in the jihadi couple “were already radicalized before they started dating or courting each other online.”
“San Bernardino involved two killers who were radicalized quite a long time before the attack,” Director Comey told the committee. “In fact, our investigation to date, which i can only say so much about at this point, indicates that they were already radicalized before they started dating or courting each other online. And online as early as the end of 2013 they were talking to each other about jihad and martyrdom before they became engaged, married and lived together in the United States.”
Syed Farook and his Pakistani-born wife Tashfeen Malik killed 14 Americans and wounded more than 20 after they stormed into a conference room where his employer was holding a Christmas party and opened fire. The Islamic State (ISIS) official radio station aired a statement following the terror attack in San Bernardino claiming it was carried out by two “supporters.” of ISIS. The ISIS radio broadcast praised the attacks and called Farook and Malik “lions,” ”fighters” or “mujahedeen.”
Federal law enforcement officials initially suspected that Malik had radicalized Farook, given her rather murky past in Pakistan and radical history in Saudi Arabia, where the couple was married. However, the investigation has cast serious doubt and concern on at least Farook’s mother and father, both of which PPD has learned have been put on terrorist watch lists.