Published December 24, 2010
A 46-year-old, blue-eyed grandmother and U.S. citizen from Indiana is under investigation for her possible ties to suspected and convicted international terrorists, FoxNews.com has learned.
Muslim-convert, Kathie Smith, 46, of Indianapolis, married a suspected German jihadist tied to the Islamic Jihad Union last year and has been flying back and forth between the U.S. and Germany as recently as two weeks ago.
A pro-jihadist video featuring Smith and her husband is being investigated by the Indiana Intelligence Fusion Center, a threat and counterterror intelligence analysis clearinghouse staffed by law enforcement officials from local and federal agencies, including the FBI and Department of Homeland Security.
“Certainly, it’s being looked at evaluated by Indiana State Police, which runs Indiana Intelligence Fusion Center, ” Indiana Department of Homeland Security spokeswoman Emily Norcross told FoxNews.com, adding that the video would be passed along to appropriate law enforcement for further investigation.
Norcross recommended contacting the FBI for additional information.
FBI spokeswoman Jenny Shearer said: “As you’re aware, FBI and DOJ policy precludes us from confirming or denying the existence of an investigation.”
In a separate request for comment, the FBI did not respond to an email asking why Smith is not on the No-fly list.
Smith herself told FoxNews.com she believes her name is on some kind of watchlist.
In lengthy email exchanges, Smith detailed air travel rituals involving hours-long interrogations, bomb residue tests, detailed questioning about her husband, intense scrutiny of her luggage, and person, and she described pat downs she found equivalent to sexual molestation. She’s been personally escorted onto airplanes by security, she said, delaying departures of flights.
Smith—who now calls herself Zubaida—added that she was met and interrogated by German police while in a taxi en route to meet her husband.
The Department of Homeland Security Washington office did not respond to request for comment.
Interpol declined to comment, citing policy.
German police said they were not currently investigating an American woman, but declined to say whether they were aware of Smith.
In an ongoing and lengthy email exchange with FoxNews.com, Smith alternatively defended her online postings, denied being anti-American, called the Sept. 11 attacks an inside job, the U.S. a terrorist organization and invited this reporter to listen to the sermons of Anwar al Awlaki to free her mind of the government’s lies.
In an email to FoxNews.com, Smith wrote:
“The US and its Ally's are abusers. They live only for the almighty dollar and power. I must ask you to think of it this way. When you are an abuses woman, you are either going to lay down and take it. Or your going to get up and fight the abuser. The Muslim community has been abused for far too long…Does this sound like Democracy to you or the American way? I would hope not but it is sad but true. And the American population needs to stand up to such tyrany.
“As a human being with a conscious, I can not idly stand by and watch "innocent" people being tortured and genocide which is what is happening to the Islamic world. This includes Palistine, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Indoneasia, Somaila to name a few.”
In the nearly six-minute video, under investigation, the Indiana grandmother and her husband, known online as Salahudin Ibn Ja'far, 28, appear posing and hugging and holding weapons interspersed with photos of known and suspected terrorists and assorted jihadist propaganda, like an Awlaki sermon album cover. There are photos of German Taliban Mujahideen and Daniel Martin Schneider, Eric Breininger and Houssain Al-Malla, members of the Saarland cell of Islamic Jihad Union charged with plotting failed terror attacks against U.S. targets in Germany, including Ramstein Air Force Base.
In an email to FoxNews.com, Smith said of the Ramstein plotters featured in her video:
"The so-called "jihadists" you have mentioned are actually personal friends of my husband from childhood. In the video he was expressing his love and gratitude to his friends, who have died fighting for freedom. Just like any other American or European citizen who displays pictures of soldiers who have died on their videos. There is no difference in gratitude and love. It is just that your government has deemed these noble men as "terrorists" because they are not on the same side. Least us not forget the Mujahideen who fought the Russians for the US. They were deemed "heroes" and lead by Osama Bin Laden at that time, and now because the government says so..they are "terrorists.””
(In a no-longer-active Facebook profile, Salahudin listed his current city as Saarbrucken, Saarland.)
In addition to being close childhood friends of convicted terrorists, Salahudin has posted content from the German Taliban’s media outfit and the Islamic Jihad Union on forums and social networking sites; has written in support of his “noble leaders” Usama bin Laden, Anwar al Awlaki, Sept. 11 plotters, among other terrorist leaders.
He appeared to maintain forums devoted to hosting Awlaki’s sermons. Earlier this month he uploaded videos to his since-deleted YouTube account that included one showing training exercises by German muhajideen at jihadist camps in Pakistan, and another featuring the widow of a German Taliban jihadist directing the wives of jihadists to fulfill their obligations while their husbands are off fighting. The video appears to have been shot at a training camp in the same Waziristan region.
In other posts, he suggests he himself has trained in these same jihadist camps.
On Facebook, he is friends with the notorious Al Qaeda English language magazine Inspire; called for the deaths of U.S. citizens, military and government leaders, repeatedly, and recently joined in on another user’s thinly veiled threats against Condoleezza Rice.
His friends make up a who’s who of terror groups, many of which his wife also belongs to.
Smith likes Anwar Awlaki, has belonged to a group called “Al Qaeda in Islamic Maghreb to answer your questions,” referring to the north African branch of Al Qaeda, is friends with terrorist groups Al Shabaab and Ansar al Jundullah, and with Sheikh Faisal and Youself al-Khatb the spiritual leader and co-founder of Revolution Muslim, respectively, among others.
On MySpace she wrote, “As salamu alaikum akhi.. it is time for Jihad and it is now Fard ayn for ALL Muslims whether their in the United Snakes or else where...Insha'Allah!!!!”
She has lauded Awlaki, celebrated the deaths of U.S. soldiers, who she called “terrorists” at the hands of the Taliban in Afghanistan and applauded another user’s posting of a rendering of the two planes hitting New York’s World Trade Center towers on Sept. 11 2001. She has repeatedly called for jihad against the West.
But in email messages, Smith told FoxNews.com she was just speaking her mind, writing:
“I am exercising my right, as an American citizen to freedom of speech, religion, and the right to bare arms. I have the right in America to say what ever I want. That is what makes America so great, right?”
But a paid government consultant aware of Smith’s movements tells FoxNews.com there’s concern that Smith will follow the path of Colleen LaRose, a suburban Philadelphian dubbed “Jihad Jane,” who pleaded not guilty in March to conspiracy charges involving a plot to kill a Swedish artist and providing material support to terrorists.
"As we saw in the case earlier this year with the arrests of "Jihad Janes" Colleen LaRose and [co-conspirator] Jamie Paulin-Ramirez, Kathie Smith has been exhibiting classic signs of extremism possibly transitioning into violence. Her online postings on Facebook have been increasingly promoted acts of terrorism and statements by terrorist leaders, such as Anwar Al-Aulaqi,” the contractor said.
“When her husband released the video earlier this month of the two of them holding weapons and included standard jihad imagery, such as pictures of German jihadists that have left to join terrorist groups in Pakistan and Afghanistan or have been arrested for plotting terror attacks, we were concerned that they might be escalating to an attack themselves.”
“I live a simple life, a life where I fear Allah first and try hard to do what is right for mankind. I am not some "horribly misguided, or brainwashed" individual. I have lived a long life and have seen many things. And I will always stand up for what is right, no matter who is trying to say the contrary.”