Washington, May 7 (ANI): American investigators have said that Times Square bombing suspect Faisal Shahzad's radicalization was gradual, cumulative and largely self-contained, meaning that it did not involve typical catalysts such as direct contact with a radical cleric, a visible conversion to militant Islam or a significant setback in life.
The Washington Post quoted a senior U.S. intelligence official, as saying that Shahzad's transition "was a gradual thing that started years ago."
"It wasn't suddenly, 'I found God, and this is the right path.' There is a combination of religion and anger," he added.
The official noted that Shahzad had made at least a dozen return trips to Pakistan since arriving in the United States in 1999 and that the CIA's campaign of Predator strikes and Pakistan's recent military operations are focused on a part of the country very close to where Shahzad grew up.
Officials stressed that investigators are still struggling to come up with a cohesive account of how Shahzad evolved into a would-be terrorist, but that they are increasingly convinced that his accounts to interrogators, in particular his assertion that he was trained by the Pakistani Taliban, are on the mark.
"We have nothing that is contradictory to what he is telling us," said a senior Obama administration official, adding that undisclosed new information from Shahzad's interrogation "sheds some light" on his motivation.
"Obviously, we want to see if there are any links, especially recently," to terrorist groups, said the official. (ANI)