Seemingly lost in the flurry of coverage that spanned less than 48 hours were two notable stories; one, the fact that Paul was the third al-Qaeda linked suspect to be arrested with direct connections to Columbus (and at least the second to have been know to be affiliated with the Masjid Omar on Riverview Dr.); and secondly, the fact that Paul was actively engaged in martial arts training inside the Masjid Omar.
Is critical thinking dead in media? What about Columbus residents? Isn’t anybody curious as to what kind of martial arts Mr. Paul was allegedly teaching? Why haven’t any reporters gone to the mosque and asked the imam, “who is teaching these all important physical fitness or self-betterment classes now that Mr. Paul is incarcerated?” I’m sure inquiring minds would like to know who has taken over the physical-skills training.
To get the complete picture, we must first define the problem. Martial Arts are not just karate, kickboxing, jeet kune do, or boxing.
According to www.dictionary.com:
Martial — adjective / Pronunciation KeyNow, take that definition in light of the actual Federal Court indictment:
- 1. Inclined or disposed to war; warlike
- 2. of, suitable for, or associated with war or the armed forces
- 3. Characteristic of or befitting a warrior
Specifically, the indictment alleges that, in approximately 1990 and 1991, Paul traveled to Pakistan and Afghanistan and received military-training at an al-Qaeda training camp in Afghanistan.In approximately mid-1991, Paul allegedly joined al-Qaeda and stayed at a guest house exclusively for al Qaeda members. Afterwards, he returned to the U.S. and taught martial arts at a mosque in Columbus. Over the next several years, he allegedly provided money and equipment from the U.S. to individuals overseas as part of the conspiracy. He also allegedly provided training to individuals in the U.S. in order that these individuals might be ready to fight violent jihad overseas.Is it plausible that al Qaeda operatives in Eurpoe couldn’t get any good quality karate training in Paris, London, or Frankfurt? Did these needy students also cover the tab for his travel expenses just to learn his specialized “high kick” technique?
On or about April 16, 1999, the indictment alleges, Paul traveled to Germany, where he provided explosives training to fellow co-conspirators and assisted them in recruiting new members. In addition, in 2004, 2005, and 2006, Paul stored a variety of items at residences in Columbus, including a laser rangefinder, night vision scope, books and literature on explosives, remote control items, and other survival gear. Beginning in 2006 and continuing thereafter, Paul allegedly conducted research on commercial flight simulator programs as well as remote-controlled boats and helicopters.
Think about how illogical that sounds! It seems rather obvious that it is safe to assume that the DOJ is alleging that Mr. Paul is more than a mere kickboxer, they are alleging that he is a specialist.
Interestingly, it is alleged that Mr. Paul was also involved in recruiting while in Europe. I’m sure that since that is against the law here in the US, that any and all (alleged) al-Qaeda recruiting was ceased once he entered US airspace.
It would appear that Paul was teaching “war skills” not only to al Qaeda recruits around the world, but also in rural, “nothing ever happens here”, Columbus, Ohio — right under the noses of his fellow mosque goers! In the same building as a matter of fact (allegedly).
One has to assume that when Mr. Paul “allegedly provided training to individuals in the U.S. in order that these individuals might be ready to fight violent jihad overseas” was given with a caveat that such training should only be used outside of the United States and should not even be attempted anywhere besides Europe and the Middle East.
Strangely, the indictment here is implying that it is possible to fight a “non-violent” jihad. If that is the case, why would one have to go overseas to non-violently struggle with your internal issues?
That brings up another point of interest-nobody has yet contested the DOJ’s definition of jihad as an act of violence. I have yet to hear anyone from CAIR condemn the Department of Justice as “misunderstanders” of the Muslim religion.
Mr. Paul was apparently being paid enough money as a mosque martial arts instructor that he was able to by a night vision scope, a laser range finder, survival gear, remote control items and other survival gear — AND send money overseas to help support his like minded brothers in the global jihad! Apparently they have a vacancy. Where do we apply?
In case you missed between the lines right there, it appears that Mr. Paul was collecting items needed to allegedly get involved in some sort of sniper activity-survival items, night vision scope, and a laser range finder — the only things missing are the rifle and ammo.
Columbus is a big city.
How could this training associated with war have gone on (allegedly for years) without anybody in authority at the mosque knowing about it?
We have yet to see a mosque official come out against extremist recruiting in the mosque, or condemn his alleged actions now that he has been indicted. We have also not seen one single person come forward and say that Mr. Paul taught them offensive, improper, falsely interpreted, warlike training.
Martial arts or war skills could also include sniper tactics, close quarter combat, room entries and takedowns, hostage taking, studying the al Qaeda training manual, knife fighting, beheading, or anything else that is characteristic of befitting a (Mujahideen) warrior.
The big (4-part) question that remains now is this; who else did he train, what did he teach them, where are they now, and does anybody really care?
Why aren’t more people concerned about “martial arts” being taught by a trained bomb maker at the local mosque? Were not the ATF and Janet Reno concerned about David Koresh teaching “martial arts” (along with his blasphemous babblings) down in Waco, TX? The ATF certainly didn’t storm that compound because Koresh was falsely claiming to be the Messiah!
Media — wake up! Asking hard hitting, penetrating questions used to be your job! Seeking facts and presenting them is not hateful or biased. This is a legitimate story that deserves further scrutiny.
America. “Those who stand for nothing will fall for anything.” Wake up and smell the coffee — it’s burning!
And, as the Department of Justice always says, “The public is reminded that an indictment is merely an accusation. Defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.”
 Alexander Hamilton