AMINE EL KHALIFI. An artist's courtroom sketch shows Amine El Khalifi, an illegal immigrant from Morocco, as he is brought before a judge in the federal courthouse in Alexandria, Va., on Feb. 17, 2012. El Khalifi, who lives in Alexandria, was arrested near the US Capitol wearing a vest he believed was full of Al Qaeda-supplied explosives and is charged in an attempted suicide bombing of Congress, the Justice Department said. He had been given the gun and the explosives in the suicide vest by the FBI in a sting operation. The explosives and gun had been rendered inoperable and posed no danger to the public.
An American who called herself Jihad Jane was sentenced to 10 years in prison for plotting with an Al Qaeda-linked terrorism cell to kill a Swedish artist.
Since 9/11, the number of Muslim-American terrorism suspects and perpetrators has averaged about 16 a year. Last year was slightly higher, but way down from 2009.
Colleen LaRose, who went by the online name 'Jihad Jane,' has pleaded guilty to four federal charges.
The FBI raids in Brookline and Watertown, Mass., and on Long Island, N.Y. were likely following-up on information gained from the interrogation of Faisal Shahzad, a suspect in the Times Square probe.
Statistically, women are far less violent than men. But the case of Jihad Jane's alleged conspirator, Jamie Paulin-Ramirez, and the resurgence of the black widows in Chechnya suggest that when it comes to terrorism, men and women have much in common.
American Jihadis are not a product of Islam. Their emergence is connected to issues of gender and a growing acceptance of violence in America.