|Their portraits are all over the UK media today. But do the British |
truly comprehend the changes that are impacting their society and lives?
From the Associated Press report of a court trial that culminated today in a terrorism conviction. Shasta Khan, 38 who denied wrongdoing, was found guilty today. Her husband Mohammed Sajid Khan, 32, pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing. She's a hairdresser. He's described as an unemployed car valet.
Prosecutors have told a U.K. court that a planned attack by a husband-and-team pair of would-be terrorists fell apart after the couple became embroiled in a domestic dispute. Police were called when 33-year-old Mohammed Sajid Khan and his 38-year-old wife Shasta got into an argument at their Manchester-area home in northern England last July. Officers there found beheading videos, al-Qaida propaganda, bomb-making guides, safety goggles, syringes, peroxide, bleach and electrical equipment. An examination of the satellite navigation in Shasta Khan's car showed several trips to Jewish areas of Manchester. Jewish protection group the Community Service Trust says the verdict shows the "reality of anti-Jewish terrorism in Britain today."
The UK's Daily Mail fills in some of the details that the AP's editors left out. The woman is British-born, and met her husband on a Muslim dating website in July 2010. They quickly married but by July 2011 there were serious problems in the relationship.
"They both became radicalised by material found on the Internet such as an Al Qaeda magazine called Inspire, the aim of which is to encourage Muslims in the West and this country to carry out holy war or jihad by mounting attacks in their own countries independent of any outside direction or association with any other person... Police were called to [their home] in Foster Street but as officers dealt with the domestic dispute and with Shasta still upset and worked up, a 'wholly unexpected turn of events occurred'... 'A member of her family, one of her brothers, told the police, in Shasta Khan’s presence, ‘We have something that I think might be interesting to you, I think he’s a home-grown terrorist’,' she told the jury.The wife then took the opportunity to 'spill the beans' and cause 'serious trouble' for her husband - but left out her own involvement in any terror offences. Seemingly innocuous and innocent items found at the home had a more sinister purpose, the jury was told. Chemicals used in Mrs Khan’s work, such as bleach, acetone and peroxide liquid, were also capable of being transformed into the ingredients of explosives along with other household items such as salt and sugar... An article from an al Qaeda magazine entitled Make a bomb in the kitchen of your Mom offered a step-by-step guide, from how to get ingredients without raising suspicion, to building a bomb, incorporating the use of Christmas lights. In just one or two days a bomb could be made to kill 'at least 10 people' and with more time 'tens of people', the article said... A satnav from her Peugeot 305 vehicle showed they had been on multiple trips to Jewish populated areas around Manchester, looking for targets to attack... the pair prepared to carry out a terrorist attack on British soil, with the most likely target being an orthodox Jewish area of Prestwich."
The Telegraph ["Muslim couple planned to bomb Jews in al Qaeda inspired plot"] sums it up briefly and accurately, quoting the Crown Prosecutor:
Behind their ''apparent normality of daily life'', Khan, an unemployed car valeter, and his hairdresser wife planned to carry out ''jihad at home''.
They are surely the last, the only remaining, home-grown British jihadists. So things are bound to be quieter and calmer from now on. Right?