Tuesday, November 29, 2005

I told you last month about Joel Hinrichs, an Oklahoma University student who blew himself up near the OU football stadium. Quite a few right-wing bloggers, eager for a new enemy they could demonize from the comfort of their computer chairs, loudly proclaimed that Hinrichs might be not merely a violent suicide but a convert to Islam, and therefore a raghead-without-a-rag suicide terrorist (who, inconveniently, happened not to kill or injure anyone but himself). The utter lack of evidence for this theory was no deterrent. The howlers, led by Ann Coulter wannabe Michelle Malkin, became so grating that even The Wall Street Journal saw the need to debunk their desperate grasping at rumor straws.

Well, Malkin won't let go -- though, God love her, you've got to admire her pluck. A few hours ago she posted this:

On Nov. 18, U.S. Magistrate Judge Valerie K. Couch released previously sealed records related to the FBI/Joint Terrorism Task Force search of Oklahoma University bomber Joel Hinrichs' apartment, his e-mail account and nine OU computers.

I obtained the nearly 350 pages of unsealed court documents just before Thanksgiving last week and reviewed them over the weekend....

Turkey tryptophan cannot stop her! And, well, she's sort of onto something here. Too bad it isn't what she thinks it is:

The affidavit of FBI special agent Jennifer Baker provides additional details of the bombing scene (pp. 16-28), including the recovery of a "white sock containing pieces of plastic" and at least "two wires protruding from the sock," as well as "a screwdriver with a hollow handle and white sock stuffed partially inside the handle," a "blue opaque ballpoint pen" with a "small razor consistent with an Exacto knife attached to the opposite end from the pen" and a "bullet casing of unknown caliber" attached to it (p. 18). Odd possessions for a depressed loner just trying to end his own singular life.

Well, maybe. She's making a pretty good case that this guy might have been deeply into the blowing-up part of his suicide, not just the dying part. But then she makes the leap:

The documents also confirm local Oklahoma media reports on the presence of TATP, "called the 'Mother of Satan' by Islamist extremists," in Hinrichs' apartment (p. 90)....

Well, there you go! Islamofascists give TATP a scary name; he had TATP -- therefore he's an Islamofascist!

(By the way, "called the 'Mother of Satan' by Islamist extremists" isn't a quote from the documents, which Malkin has uploaded and linked for your convenience as a huge PDF file; she got the phrase from the local news story she cites, the one that says TATP was part of the bomb. So the leap from Hinrichs to jihad isn't one the authorities are making -- though you'd never know that from Malkin's write-up.)

Now we come to the best part, the part that blows all of Malkin's fantasies about Hinrichs the Jihadist out of the water. She reproduces an excerpt of a document from an FBI special agent that says in part:

...Hinrichs' laptop computer was located and subsequently seized. When discovered, the laptop computer was on and in screen-saver mode. When the mouse was manipulated to activate the screen, a text document appeared. The document contained notes apparently written by Hinrichs to himself. At the point in the text document where the cursor was left, the phrase "Fuck all this. None of you are worth living with. You can all kiss my ass." was written.

"Fuck all this. None of you are worth living with. You can all kiss my ass."

Yeah, that sounds like the message of a devout Muslim devoted to holy war.

For comparison let's find the last words of a real jihadist suicide bomber -- here. Let's take a sample of the text.

Real suicide bomber: "I ask you to make dua to Allah almighty to accept the work from me and my brothers and enter us into gardens of paradise."

Hinrichs: "You can all kiss my ass."

You can hardly tell the difference!

So what else does Malkin have? She continues:

Beyond this, unfortunately, there's not much more of interest in the documents.


So why is she getting all worked up about this? Oh, right, I forgot -- spotting "the enemy within" under every bed is her business, and business is good.

But Malkin presses on to the chilling conclusion:

... So, was he simply a troubled soul, a freelance Islamist bent on mass murder at the OU football stadium, or something else? The unsealed papers neither prove nor disprove any of these theories.

Wrong. The unsealed papers prove, or at least strongly suggest, that he was a pissed-off, crazy, suicidal, possibly potentially mass-murdering red-blooded American. He was no Islamist suicide bomber. An Islamist suicide bomber who could bear to go through with blowing himself up wouldn't shun a crowd and spare others. And an Islamist suicide bomber wouldn't leave a departing message that said nothing about Allah or Muhammad or Muslims struggling against Jews and Crusaders, but did say, "You can all kiss my ass."

Case closed, Michelle.

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