Author of Al Qaeda Magazine Reportedly an American Citizen

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The principal author of a new online Al Qaeda magazine has a fairly unexpected background. CNN is reporting that the man behind the articles in the 70-page magazine (called Inspire) is in fact a 23-year-old American citizen who left the U.S. for Yemen in October 2009. Inspire is sort of a People magazine for the terrorist set, with articles on bomb-making and encrypting electronic messages, as well as interviews with the likes of notorious Yemeni-American cleric Anwar al-Awlaki. The author, identified as Samir Khan, was born in Saudi Arabia; moved to Queens, New York, with his family when he was 7; and then eventually relocated to Charlotte, North Carolina. Law-enforcement officials said Khan attended meetings of the Islamic Thinkers Society when he was in New York, which aims to achieve an ideal Islamic society through “intellectual [and] political non-violent means.”

U.S. citizen believed to be writing for al Qaeda website, source says [CNN]