Less than a week after a Jordanian man was accused of trying to blow up a skyscraper in downtown Dallas, the heads of the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security told a Senate committee Wednesday that the country’s anti-terrorism measures are working and becoming more sophisticated.
Hosam Smadi’s arrest was among a slew of apprehensions by the FBI in the past few weeks. Director Robert Mueller did not disclose much about the investigation, but he told the Senate homeland security committee that “the Internet played somewhat of a role” in radicalizing the 19-year-old living in Italy, Texas.
Smadi was taken into custody after a sting operation, and the FBI said he came to its attention after he expressed jihadist views on a Web site.
The Internet has become a “powerful conduit for radicalization efforts,” Mueller said. “Individuals can also find like-minded extremists using chat rooms and social networking sites, enhancing their ability to develop global networks of extremist contacts.”