Slain Minnesota ISIS Fighter Had Airport Security Clearance

Wednesday, 03 Sep 2014 10:09 AM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

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One of the two Americans killed while fighting for the Islamic State (ISIS) terrorist organization in Syria had worked at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport cleaning planes before he went overseas to become a jihadist, an investigation has revealed.

Abdirahmaan Muhumed, 29, who died in the same battle as Minnesota native Douglas McCain, was employed by Delta Global Services, a cleaning company owned by Delta Airlines, reports Minnesota Twin Cities FOX affiliate KMSP

Story continues below video.

Two former employees confirmed they'd worked with Muhumed, who had been married three times and was the father of nine children. While earlier this year, the airport's cleaning contract was taken over by Airserv, another contractor, Muhumed would have had to had security clearance to work for Delta.

The Metropolitan Airports Commission, which gives security clearances, would not comment on Muhumed's situation because of the ongoing FBI investigation. However, his job would have given him "access to the tarmac and unfettered access to planes," KMSP reported.

Muhumed did not have a criminal record that would have prevented his having a job with DCS, or what his security clearance level was at the airport.

Earlier this year, Muhumed, along with several other Somali-Americans from the Twin Cities, was said to have been lured by ISIS, through "jihadi cool" rap videos, stories of revolution, and the glories of fighting battles toward creating an Islamic caliphate in the Middle East.

Another Minnesota man, Troy Kastigar, was also killed in overseas jihadist battles, although a few years ago in a different war zone. Kastigar and McCain were friends from the same high school class.

As many as 15 Somali-American men from the Minneapolis-St. Paul area may have left Minnesota to fight with ISIS, reports The New York Daily News, leaving experts to wonder about the reason so many are being attracted to the jihadist battles.

“They all had the same issues,” said Mohamud Noor, acting executive director for the Confederation of Somali Communities in Minnesota. “They are young men who are looking and looking for their identity.”

But the problem with men leaving Minnesota behind for jihad has been going on for at least seven years, not just with the rise of ISIS and its talent for using social media and the Internet to recruit Americans to its cause.

Many have followed the example of Kastigar, a Minnesota man who converted to Islam and died in 2009 fighting with the terror group al-Shabab in Mogadishu.

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