FBI photo of Ramzi Yousef.
|Born|| 27 April 1968 |
Kuwait or United Arab Emirates
|Arrested||7 February 1995|
Inter-Services Intelligence and Diplomatic Security Service
|Detained at||ADX Florence, Colorado, U.S.|
|Alternate name||Abdul Basit Mahmoud Abdul Karim|
Ramzi Ahmed Yousef
Ramzi Mohammed Yousef
and many others
|Charge(s)|| Murder · Conspiracy to murder|
(found guilty of all charges)
|Penalty||Life imprisonment with no possibility of parole plus 240 years|
at ADX Florence, Colorado
|Parents||Mohammad Abdul Karim|
Ramzi Yousef (Arabic : رمزي يوسفRamzī Yūsuf; born 27 April 1968) is a convicted and incarcerated international terrorist who was one of the main perpetrators of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, the bombing of Philippine Airlines Flight 434, and was a co-conspirator in the Bojinka plot. In 1995, he was arrested by the Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and U.S. Diplomatic Security Service at a guest house in Islamabad, Pakistan, while trying to set a bomb in a baby doll, then extradited to the United States.
The 1993 World Trade Center bombing was a terrorist attack on the World Trade Center, carried out on February 26, 1993, when a truck bomb detonated below the North Tower of the World Trade Center in New York City. The 1,336 lb (606 kg) urea nitrate–hydrogen gas enhanced device was intended to send the North Tower crashing into the South Tower, bringing both towers down and killing thousands of people. It failed to do so but killed six people and injured over a thousand.
Philippine Airlines Flight 434, sometimes referred to as PAL434 or PR434, was a flight on December 11, 1994 from Cebu to Tokyo on a Boeing 747-283B that was seriously damaged by a bomb, killing one passenger and damaging vital control systems. The bombing was a test run of the unsuccessful Bojinka terrorist attacks. The Boeing 747 was flying the second leg of a route from Ninoy Aquino International Airport, Pasay City in the Philippines, to Narita International Airport, in Tokyo, Japan, with a stop at Mactan–Cebu International Airport, Cebu, in the Philippines. After the bomb detonated, 57-year-old veteran pilot Captain Eduardo "Ed" Reyes was able to land the aircraft, saving it and the remaining passengers and crew.
The Bojinka plot was a large-scale, three-phase attack planned by terrorists Ramzi Yousef and Khalid Sheikh Mohammed for January 1995. They planned to assassinate Pope John Paul II, blow up 11 airliners in flight from Asia to the United States with the goal of killing approximately 4,000 passengers and shutting down air travel around the world, and crash a plane into the headquarters of the CIA in Fairfax County, Virginia.
He was tried in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York along with two co-conspirators and was convicted of planning the Bojinka plot.He received two life sentences plus 240 years for his part in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and Bojinka plot.
The United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, known informally as "The Mother Court", is a federal district court. Appeals from the Southern District of New York are taken to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
Yousef's maternal uncle is Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, with whom he allegedly planned the Bojinka plot. Mohammed is a senior al-Qaeda member accused of being the principal architect of the September 11 attacks in 2001. Yousef is serving his life sentences at ADX Florence, located near Florence, Colorado.He shares a cell block that is commonly referred to as "Bombers Row" with Terry Nichols, Eric Rudolph, and Ted Kaczynski.
Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is a Pakistani Islamist militant held by the United States at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp under terrorism-related charges. He was named as "the principal architect of the 9/11 attacks" in the 9/11 Commission Report.
Al-Qaeda is a militant Sunni Islamist multi-national organization founded in 1988 by Osama bin Laden, Abdullah Azzam, and several other Arab volunteers during the Soviet–Afghan War.
The September 11 attacks were a series of four coordinated terrorist attacks by the Islamic terrorist group al-Qaeda against the United States on the morning of Tuesday, September 11, 2001. The attacks killed 2,977 people, injured over 6,000 others, and caused at least $10 billion in infrastructure and property damage. Additional people have died of 9/11-related cancer and respiratory diseases in the months and years following the attacks.
The name "Ramzi Yousef" is believed to be an alias.The 9/11 Commission claimed that Yousef's real name is Abdul Basit Mahmoud Abdul Karim. He was born in Kuwait to his parents who were from Pakistan and Palestine. His father is Mohammed Abdul Karim from Balochistan, Pakistan.
The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, also known as the 9/11 Commission, was set up on November 27, 2002, "to prepare a full and complete account of the circumstances surrounding the September 11 attacks", including preparedness for and the immediate response to the attacks. The commission was also mandated to provide recommendations designed to guard against future attacks.
Kuwait, officially the State of Kuwait, is a country in Western Asia. Situated in the northern edge of Eastern Arabia at the tip of the Persian Gulf, it shares borders with Iraq and Saudi Arabia. As of 2016, Kuwait has a population of 4.5 million people: 1.3 million are Kuwaitis and 3.2 million are expatriates. Expatriates account for 70% of the population.
Pakistan, officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, is a country in South Asia. It is the world’s sixth-most populous country with a population exceeding 212,742,631 people. In area, it is the 33rd-largest country, spanning 881,913 square kilometres. Pakistan has a 1,046-kilometre (650-mile) coastline along the Arabian Sea and Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by India to the east, Afghanistan to the west, Iran to the southwest, and China in the northeast. It is separated narrowly from Tajikistan by Afghanistan's Wakhan Corridor in the northwest, and also shares a maritime border with Oman.
When his family returned to Pakistan in the mid-1980s, Yousef was sent to the United Kingdom for education. In 1986, he enrolled at Swansea Institute in Wales, where he studied electrical engineering, graduating four years later.He also studied at the Oxford College of Further Education to improve his English.
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world. The Irish Sea separates Great Britain and Ireland. The United Kingdom's 242,500 square kilometres (93,600 sq mi) were home to an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017.
Swansea Metropolitan University is a former university based in Swansea, Wales, UK. The university merged with, and became a constituent campus of, the University of Wales Trinity Saint David on 1 August 2013.
Electrical engineering is a technical discipline concerned with the study, design and application of equipment, devices and systems which use electricity, electronics, and electromagnetism. It emerged as an identified activity in the latter half of the 19th century after commercialization of the electric telegraph, the telephone, and electrical power generation, distribution and use.
Yousef left the United Kingdom after completing his studies and returned to Pakistan. He began to learn bomb making in a terrorist training camp in Peshawar, before traveling to the United States in 1992.
A terrorist training camp is a facility established to train individuals in the ways of terrorism, often without the consent of the trainees. By teaching them the methods and tactics of terrorism, those conducting such facilities aim to create an "army" of individuals who will do their bidding. They are often located in, but not confined to, regions where it is intended that acts of terrorism will be carried out, or in traditional areas of extremism, such as Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq and Somalia. Wide-open spaces such as parks and wilderness areas are common sites for these camps.
Peshawar is the capital of the Pakistani province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Situated in the broad Valley of Peshawar near the eastern end of the historic Khyber Pass, close to the border with Afghanistan, Peshawar's recorded history dates back to at least 539 BCE, making it the oldest city in Pakistan and one of the oldest cities in the world. Peshawar was the capital of the ancient Kushan Empire, and was home to what may have been the tallest building in the ancient world, the Kanishka stupa. Peshawar was then sacked by the White Huns, before the arrival of Muslim empires. The city was an important trading centre during the Mughal era before serving as the winter capital of the Afghan Durrani Empire from 1757 until the city was captured by the Sikh Empire in 1818, who were then followed by the British in 1849.
The World Trade Center bombing was a terrorist attack that occurred on 26 February 1993, when a car bomb was detonated below Tower One of the World Trade Center in New York City, New York. The 1,500 lb (680 kg) urea nitrate-hydrogen gas enhanced device was intended to knock the North Tower (Tower 1) into the South Tower (Tower 2), to bring both towers down and kill thousands of people. It failed to do so, but killed six civilians and injured 1,042, including 919 civilians (including an EMS worker), 88 firefighters, and 35 police officers.
Ramzi Yousef sent a letter to The New York Times after the bombing that expressed his motive:
We are, the fifth battalion in the Liberation Army, declare our responsibility for the explosion on the mentioned building. This action was done in response for the American political, economical, and military support to Israel, the state of terrorism, and to the rest of the dictator countries in the region.
- Our Demands Are:
- 1 – Stop all military, economical, and political aid to Israel.
- 2 – All diplomatic relations with Israel must stop.
- 3 – Not to interfere with any of the Middle East countries interior affairs.
If our demands are not met, all of our functional groups in the army will continue to execute our missions against the military and civilian targets in and out the United States. For your own information, our army has more than hundred and fifty suicidal soldiers ready to go ahead. The terrorism that Israel practices (which is supported by America) must be faced with a similar one. The dictatorship and terrorism (also supported by America) that some countries are practicing against their own people must also be faced with terrorism.
The American people must know, that their civilians who got killed are not better than those who are getting killed by the American weapons and support.
The American people are responsible for the actions of their government and they must question all of the crimes that their government is committing against other people. Or they — Americans — will be the targets of our operations that could diminish them.
On 1 September 1992, Yousef entered the United States with an Iraqi passport of disputed authenticity.His companion, Ahmed Ajaj, carried multiple immigration documents, among which was a crudely falsified Swedish passport. Providing a smokescreen to facilitate Yousef's entry, Ajaj was arrested on the spot when immigration officials found bomb manuals, videotapes of suicide car bombers, and a cheat sheet on how to lie to U.S. immigration inspectors in his luggage. Directors of the American Counter-Terrorism program later tied the travel arrangements to a phone call from Sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman, an Egyptian militant Muslim preacher, to the Pakistani telephone number 810604.
Yousef was held for 72 hours and repeatedly interrogated, but INS holding cells were overcrowded. Yousef, requesting political asylum, was given a hearing date of 9 November 1992.He told Jersey City Police that he was Abdul Basit Mahmud Abdul Karim, a Pakistani national born and brought up in Kuwait, and that he had lost his passport. On December 31, 1992, the Pakistani Consulate in New York issued a temporary passport to Abdul Basit Mahmud Abdul Karim (SAAG 484 2002).
Yousef traveled around New York and New Jersey, during which time he made calls to Abdel-Rahman via cell phone. Between 3 December and 27 December 1992, he made conference calls to key numbers in Balochistan, Pakistan (SAAG 484 2002).
Ajaj never reclaimed the manuals and tapes, which remained at the New York office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) after Judge Reena Raggi had ordered the materials released in December 1992.
Yousef, aided by Mohammed A. Salameh and Mahmud Abouhalima, began assembling the 1,500 lb (680 kg) urea nitrate-fuel oil device in his Pamrapo Avenue home in Jersey City ready for delivery to the WTC on 26 February 1993. He ordered chemicals from his hospital room when he had been injured in a car crash — one of three accidents caused by Salameh in late 1992 and early in 1993.
Speaking in code by phone on 29 December 1992, Ajaj told Yousef that he had won release of the bomb manuals but warned Yousef that picking them up might jeopardize his "business". On one book carried by Ajaj in 1992 was a word translated by the FBI as meaning "the basic rule." It was later found to be al Qaeda – meaning "the base."
During a CBS 60 Minutes interview in 2002, co-conspirator Abdul Rahman Yasin said that Yousef originally wanted to bomb Jewish neighborhoods in New York City. Yasin added that after touring Crown Heights and Williamsburg, Yousef had changed his mind. Yasin alleged that Yousef was educated in bomb-making at a training camp in Peshawar, Pakistan.
Yousef rented a Ryder van and on 26 February 1993, loaded it with powerful explosives. He packed four cardboard boxes into the back of the van, each containing a mixture of paper bags, newspapers, urea, and nitric acid; next to them he placed three red metal cylinders of compressed hydrogen. Four large containers of nitroglycerin were loaded into the center of the van with Atlas Rockmaster blasting caps connected to each.
The van was driven into the garage of the World Trade Center, where it exploded. Using his Pakistani passport, Yousef escaped from the United States hours later. It is believed that he fled to Iraq and then Pakistan.As a result of the bombing, the FBI added Yousef as the 436th person on its Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list on 21 April 1993.
After returning to Pakistan in February 1993, Yousef went into hiding. That summer, he allegedly took up a contract to assassinate the Prime Minister of Pakistan, Benazir Bhutto, which was initiated by members of Sipah-e-Sahaba. The plot failed when Yousef and Abdul Hakim Murad were interrupted by police outside Bhutto's residence. Yousef decided to abort the bombing and it blew up as he was trying to recover the device. He escaped and went into hiding during the investigation.[ citation needed ]
After the Iranian shrine bombing, Yousef soon began planning the Bojinka plot. It included plans to assassinate Pope John Paul II while he visited the Philippines, and to plant bombs inside several United and Delta Air Lines flights out of Bangkok. On this plot, he allegedly worked with his maternal uncle, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.
On 11 December 1994, Yousef conducted a trial run of the plan by boarding Philippine Airlines Flight 434 from Manila to Tokyo, Japan, with a stopover in the Philippine city of Cebu. His identity for the flight was that of an Italian man named Armaldo Forlani. The cabin crew for this leg of the flight later told investigators that Yousef changed seats several times during the relatively short flight, with his last seat change coming after a return from the lavatory.
Yousef assembled a bomb in the lavatory, set the timer to detonate four hours later, and put it in the lifejacket pocket under seat 26K on the right-hand side of the fuselage. a.m., with the bomb having been planted around two hours earlier. PAL 434 was cleared for takeoff at 8:38 a.m.The domestic flight attendant Maria Delacruz had noticed that Yousef kept switching seats during the course of the Manila to Cebu flight, but did not warn the new cabin crew boarding at Cebu of his behavior. Yousef and 25 other passengers left the plane at Cebu, where 256 passengers and a new cabin crew boarded for the trip to Tokyo. Many passengers were Japanese people; some were coworkers traveling as part of a tour group. Airport congestion delayed the departure of Flight 434 from Cebu for 38 minutes. All of the passengers had boarded by 8:30
At 11:43 am, about an hour and a half from Tokyo, the bomb exploded while Flight 434 cruised on autopilot 33,000 feet (10,000 m) above the Japanese island of Minami Daitō (near Okinawa Island and approximately 260 miles (420 km) southwest of Tokyo). The explosion ripped the body of 24-year-old Haruki Ikegami(池上 春樹Ikegami Haruki), a Japanese businessman occupying the seat where the bomb was placed, in half. Ten passengers sitting in the seats in front of and behind Ikegami were also injured while one needed urgent medical care. The explosion tore out a two square-foot (0.2 m2) portion of the cabin floor into the cargo hold but leaving the fuselage of the plane intact. The airplane was spared from a deadly fiery explosion as the seat where the bomb was planted, 26K, was two rows away from the central fuel tank. The rapid expansion of energy from the bomb caused the plane to expand vertically slightly, damaging cables to the steering and aileron controls. The bomb's orientation caused the energy to be mostly absorbed by Ikegami; he was killed but the other passengers and the plane were not catastrophically damaged.
The cockpit crew improvised to manipulate the plane's speed and direction by varying the engines' throttle settings. Captain Eduardo Reyes made an emergency landing at Okinawa's Naha Airport, saving 272 passengers and 20 crew. The plane became a crime scene; bomb fragments found in and around the blast zone, as well as the lower half of Ikegami's body, provided clues pointing investigators back to Manila.
Yousef then returned to Manila, where he began preparing at least a dozen bombs, each with more explosive materials. Weeks before his planned attacks, a fire started in his Manila flat, forcing him to flee the room, leaving everything behind. The fire made the apartment staff suspicious, and soon police, led by Aida Fariscal, raided the flat and uncovered the plot. A Philippine National Police raid in another Manila apartment revealed related evidence that Abdul Murad, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, and Yousef had drawn up plans for flying an airplane into CIA headquarters. The information was passed on to the Federal Aviation Administration, who warned individual airlines.
Despite the international manhunt, Yousef escaped from Manila to Pakistan. On 31 January 1995, he flew from Pakistan to Thailand and met with an associate Istaique Parker. Yousef told Parker to check two suitcases filled with bombs, one on a Delta Air Lines flight and another on a United Airlines flight. Both bombs were timed to blow up over populated areas of the U.S. Parker spent much of the day at the airport, but was reportedly too scared to approach the airlines with the suitcases. Finally, Parker returned to Yousef's hotel and lied that employees at the airline cargo sections were asking for passports and fingerprints, making it too risky to go ahead with the plan.[ citation needed ]
Yousef, wanting to get the bombs on a plane bound for the U.S., called a friend with diplomatic immunity in Qatar who was willing to take the suitcases to London and check them on a flight to the U.S. The plan was that they would explode mid-flight and destroy the plane. Yousef planned to use the friend's diplomatic immunity to ensure the suitcases would be loaded on the plane. According to Simon Reeve's book The New Jackals , the name of this friend has not been revealed, but his father is said to be a very senior politician and leading member of the establishment in Qatar (at the time, Yousef's maternal uncle, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, was living in Qatar as the guest of a Qatari cabinet official). However, there was a problem and the suitcases were not checked in. Yousef and Parker returned to Pakistan on 2 February 1995.
Following a tip-off from Istaique Parker, on 7 February 1995, Agents of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Special Agents of the U.S. Diplomatic Security Service, including Bill Miller and Jeff Riner, raided room number 16 in the Su-Casa Guest House in Islamabad, Pakistan, and captured Yousef before he could move to Peshawar.Parker was paid $2 million under the Rewards for Justice Program for the information leading to Yousef's capture. During the raid, agents found Delta and United Airlines flight schedules and bomb components in children's toys. Yousef had chemical burns on his fingers. Yousef was sent to a federal prison in New York City and held there until his trial.
On September 5, 1996, Yousef and two co-conspirators were convicted for their role in the Bojinka plot and were sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Kevin Duffy to life in prison without parole.
On 12 November 1997, Yousef was found guilty of masterminding the 1993 bombing,and on January 8, 1998, Judge Duffy found Yousef guilty of plotting a "seditious conspiracy" to bomb the World Trade Center and sentenced Yousef to life plus 240 years in prison for both bombings. He also recommended that Yousef's entire sentence be served in solitary confinement.
During the 1998 trial, Yousef said:
You keep talking also about collective punishment and killing innocent people to force governments to change their policies; you call this terrorism when someone would kill innocent people or civilians in order to force the government to change its policies. Well, when you were the first one who invented this terrorism.
You were the first one who killed innocent people, and you are the first one who introduced this type of terrorism to the history of mankind when you dropped an atomic bomb which killed tens of thousands of women and children in Japan and when you killed over a hundred thousand people, most of them civilians, in Tokyo with fire bombings. You killed them by burning them to death. And you killed civilians in Vietnam with chemicals as with the so-called Orange agent. You killed civilians and innocent people, not soldiers, innocent people every single war you went. You went to wars more than any other country in this century, and then you have the nerve to talk about killing innocent people.
And now you have invented new ways to kill innocent people. You have so-called economic embargo which kills nobody other than children and elderly people, and which other than Iraq you have been placing the economic embargo on Cuba and other countries for over 35 years. ... The Government in its summations and opening statement said that I was a terrorist. Yes, I am a terrorist and I am proud of it. And I support terrorism so long as it was against the United States Government and against Israel, because you are more than terrorists; you are the one who invented terrorism and using it every day. You are liars, butchers, and hypocrites.
Ramzi Yousef, you claim to be an Islamic militant. Of all the persons killed or harmed in some way by the World Trade Center bomb, you cannot name one who was against you or your cause. You did not care, just so long as you left dead bodies and people hurt.
Ramzi Yousef, you are not fit to uphold Islam. Your God is death. Your God is not Allah ...
You weren't seeking conversions. The only thing you wanted to do was to cause death. Your God is not Allah. You worship death and destruction. What you do, you do not for Allah; you do it only to satisfy your own twisted sense of ego.
You would have others believe that you are a soldier, but the attacks on civilization for which you stand convicted here were sneak attacks which sought to kill and maim totally innocent people ...
You, Ramzi Yousef, came to this country pretending to be an Islamic fundamentalist, but you cared little or nothing for Islam or the faith of the Muslims. Rather, you adored not Allah, but the evil that you yourself have become. And I must say that as an apostle of evil, you have been most effective.
Yousef is held at the high-security Supermax prison ADX Florence in Florence, Colorado.The handcuffs Ramzi Yousef wore when he was captured in Pakistan are displayed at the FBI Museum in Washington, D.C. His Federal Prisoner number is: 03911-000.
In 1997, Osama bin Laden said during an interview that he did not know Yousef, but claimed to know Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who is the mastermind behind the September 11, 2001 attacks and Yousef's uncle. According to the 9/11 Commission, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed said under interrogation that "Yousef was not a member of al-Qaeda and that Yousef never met Bin Laden."Some authors, however, have made note of a stronger link between Yousef and bin Laden.
Ramzi bin al-Shibh is a Yemeni citizen being held by the U.S. as an enemy combatant detainee at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba. He is accused of being a "key facilitator for the September 11 attacks" in 2001 in the United States.
John Patrick O'Neill was an American counter-terrorism expert, who worked as a special agent and eventually a Special Agent in Charge in the Federal Bureau of Investigation. In 1995, O'Neill began to intensely study the roots of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing after he assisted in the capture of Ramzi Yousef, who was the leader of that plot.
Abdul Hakim Ali Hashim Murad born January 4, 1968) is an Islamic terrorist, who was a co-conspirator in the Bojinka plot—the forerunner to the September 11 attacks. In 1996, he was convicted in the United States of trying to blow up a dozen airliners and was sentenced to life in prison.
The Konsojaya Trading Company was a shell company cofounded by Jemaah Islamiyah leader Riduan Isamuddin, better known as "Hambali", and his Malaysian Chinese wife, Noralwizah Lee Abdullah on June 1994. The company was based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Wali Khan Amin Shah was a man who had a role in the foiled Bojinka plot. He was convicted of terrorism, and has been imprisoned on these charges since 1995.
Mohammed Jamal Khalifa (1 February 1957 – 31 January 2007) was a Saudi businessman from Jeddah who married one of Osama bin Laden's sisters. He has been accused of funding terror plots and groups in the Philippines in the 1990s while head of the International Islamic Relief Organization branch there. He was murdered in Madagascar in 2007.
The Hamburg cell or Hamburg terror cell was, according to U.S. and German intelligence agencies, a group of radical Islamists based in Hamburg, Germany that included students who eventually came to be key operatives in the 9/11 attacks. Important members included Mohamed Atta, who led the four hijacking teams in 2001 and piloted American Airlines Flight 11; Ramzi bin al-Shibh, who conspired with the other three members but was unable to enter the United States; Marwan al-Shehhi, who piloted United Airlines Flight 175; and Ziad Jarrah, who piloted United Airlines Flight 93 and failed to hit a target in Washington, D.C.. Other members included Said Bahaji, Zakariya Essabar, Mounir el-Motassadeq, and Abdelghani Mzoudi.
On September 11, 2001, 19 Arab-Muslim hijackers took control of four commercial aircraft and used them as suicide weapons in a series of four coordinated acts of terrorism to strike the World Trade Center in New York City, The Pentagon in Arlington County, Virginia, and an additional target in Washington, D.C. Two aircraft hit the World Trade Center while the third hit the Pentagon. A fourth plane never arrived at its target, crashing in a field in Pennsylvania after a passenger revolt. The intended target is believed to have been either the United States Capitol or the White House. As a result, 2,977 victims were killed, making it the deadliest terrorist attack on U.S. soil; also the deadliest foreign attack on U.S. soil, exceeding Japan's surprise attack on Pearl Harbor in Honolulu, Hawaii, on December 7, 1941, which killed 2,403 victims. It was carefully planned by al-Qaeda, who sent 19 terrorists to take over Boeing 757 and Boeing 767 aircraft, operated by American Airlines and United Airlines.
Ahmed Mohammad Ajaj was convicted of participating in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. He is currently serving a 240-year sentence at USP Terre Haute in Terre for Haute, Indiana for his role in the bombing.
Mehdat Abdul Salam Shabana was a member of the board of directors, during the mid-1990s, of the now defunct Konsojaya Trading Company, a terrorist front organization based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. He owned half of the company's 6,000 shares. Konsojaya was a shell company cofounded by Riduan Isamuddin, better known as "Hambali", in June 1994. As of January 2002, Shabana's whereabouts were still unknown.
Zahid Al-Sheikh is an older brother of alleged 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammad. He volunteered to travel to Afghanistan to help fight to resist the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan. Following the ouster of the Soviet forces Zahid is reported to have played a role in planning terrorist projects. He is also reported to have shifted careers to the direction of non-governmental organizations that provided aid to refugees.
Mohammed Saddiq Odeh is a Palestinian terrorist and one of the four former al-Qaeda members sentenced to life imprisonment in 2001 for their parts in the 1998 United States embassy bombings. He is in a supermax prison known as ADX Florence.
The Third Terrorist: The Middle East Connection to the Oklahoma City Bombing is a book by journalist Jayna Davis about evidence of an alleged conspiracy behind the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing. The Justice Department initially sought, but then abandoned its search for, a Middle East suspect. The book was published in April 2004 by Nelson Current Publishers, and became a New York Times best-seller. In contrast to conspiracy theories that the bombing was a false flag attack perpetrated by elements of the US government, the book presents a theory that links the Oklahoma City bombers to agents of Iraq and Al-Qaeda, operating under Iranian state sponsorship.
Two weeks after the September 11 attacks, the Federal Bureau of Investigation connected the hijackers to al-Qaeda, a global, decentralized terrorist network. In a number of video, audio, interview and printed statements, senior members of al-Qaeda have also asserted responsibility for organizing the September 11 attacks. It is believed that Osama bin Laden, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, and Mohammed Atef were the ones who plotted the attacks after meeting together in 1999. It is also believed Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was the one who planned the attacks and that Atef was the one who organized the hijackers.
Mohammed Atef was the military chief of al-Qaeda, and was considered one of Osama bin Laden's two deputies, the other being Ayman Al Zawahiri, although Atef's role in the organization was not well known by intelligence agencies for years. He was killed in a US airstrike in November 2001.
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