BY ROBERT SPENCER
Republished below in full unedited for informational, educational, & research purposes.
Who saw this coming? Bader Alzahrani, a Saudi national who stole a New Jersey school bus and wrote about jihad and “blood, destruction, Allah,” has been found incompetent to stand trial. And that makes total sense, right? After all, it isn’t as if he were someone who was actually dangerous, such as a MAGA hat-wearing Trump supporter. So why should the poor dear be put through the trauma of an actual trial?
Lehigh Valley Live reported Thursday that Alzahrani “is facing charges from incidents in January, including receipt of a stolen vehicle transportation of a stolen vehicle in federal court, and motor vehicle theft, burglary, theft of moveable property, criminal damage and criminal trespass in New Jersey court.” However, federal Judge Michael Hammer (wait, shouldn’t that be Judge Michael Gavel?) said, “based on a psychiatric report sealed by the court, Alzahrani has a mental disease or defect that makes him unable to understand the court proceedings and properly participate in his defense.”
This is perfectly reasonable once one understands that Judge Mike Hammer is part of an establishment that does not acknowledge the existence of Islamic jihad. The Obama administration removed all mention of Islam and jihad from counterterror training back in 2010, and since then it has become settled dogma among the political elites that “Muslims are peaceful and tolerant people and have nothing whatsoever to do with terrorism,” as Hillary Clinton so memorably put it in November 2015. When confronted with an actual Islamic jihad terrorist, these fantasists claim he is mentally ill. Anyone who thinks God has told them he will reward them for killing people must be crazy, right?
Alzahrani does appear to be a committed jihadi. According to the criminal complaint against him, he not only stole the bus but apparently broke into an unoccupied residential home across the street from the parking lot where the bus was stolen. A backpack was found in that home, containing Alzahrani’s Saudi passport and a number of “other items that appeared to belong to Alzahrani.” Among these items were journals that contained entries in both English and Arabic. The entries were hair-raising.
Alzahrani wrote: “Why didn’t you slaughter the police officer who threw the Quran?” And: “This is a war, and there will be losses and collateral losses. … It is a war and y’all started, feel the rage.” The war he had in mind would be extremely bloody: “Destruction of the new world and the earth will be destroyed from all sides.” It was a religious war: “God I am ready for your orders. I want to live the rest of my life to serve you and the religion.” Alzahrani also wrote: “Blood, blood, destruction, destruction. Allah.”
Amid all this, Alzahrani had time to throw in the antisemitism that we have come to expect from hardcore jihadis: “Jews control everything,” he wrote, and “F**k each and every Jewish person.” He also added, in a blow to the feds’ “white supremacist” hunters, “F**k you privileged whitey.” According to the complaint, “the Journals also included entries concerning ‘Jihad’ and how Alzahrani did not intend to return to Saudi Arabia.” He also doesn’t seem to have placed a whole lot of emphasis on his studies, despite being in the United States on a student visa: “In or around October 2022, Alzahrani left the university in which he was enrolled and was reported missing.”
There is no indication from the criminal complaint about what exactly Alzahrani intended to do with his purloined school bus, or what connection, if any, the hate-filled and violent rants in his journals had with the bus theft. Nonetheless, anyone who could write the kinds of things that Alzahrani wrote clearly had malign intentions that would likely have manifested themselves in some form before he returned to Saudi Arabia. We can be grateful that all Alzahrani did was steal a bus, and that no one got hurt in the process. Nevertheless, this incident should make American authorities reexamine some of their basic assumptions, although that’s about as likely as the Democrats running Trump for president in 2024.
Now that he has been declared incompetent to stand trial, Alzahrani will likely be allowed to return to Saudi Arabia, and that will be that. We will almost certainly never find out exactly how he intended to bring blood and destruction upon non-Muslims in the United States for Allah. But Judge Mike Hammer and his colleagues would do well to study Islam’s theology of jihad before ruling on any similar cases in the future. After all, lives could be at stake.