ISIS is just a regional thing, eh Barack Obama?
Thirty-three year old Douglas McAuthur McCain, an American citizen and US passport carrying, convert to radical Islam was killed over the weekend in Syria while fighting with ISIS. McCain was born in Illinois on January 29, 1981. His family later moved to Minnesota’s Twin Cities area where he attended Robbinsdale Cooper High School in New Hope as part of the class of 1999. In highschool Douglas McAuthur McCain was described as “always smiling” joker who liked to laugh and play basketball and a goofball. Then came his run-ins with the law and ultimately his conversion to Islam around 2004, which would lead to fighting along side ISIS.
After high school, McCain stuck around the Twin Cities for at least a while. Public records searches show several run-ins with the law. One mugshot of a Douglas McAuthur McCain details an arrest in 2000 at the age of 19 in New Hope on charges of disorderly conduct. Another arrest record – also from New Hope – shows the same man was arrested again in 2006 and booked on charges of obstruction. The mugshot from that arrest also clearly appears to be McCain – and has the same neck tattoo that is seen in Facebook photos of McCain on his “Duale ThaslaveofAllah” account – and the body found on the Syrian battlefield. NBC News confirmed on Tuesday that he was convicted of both charges.
According to reports, US officials aid that Douglas McAuthur McCain was on a terror watch list. Also, more than 100 Americans are fighting as jihadists in Syria and more than a 1000 Westerners. The most dangerous weapon these Islamists may have is their passport. Pentagon spokesman Rear Adm. John Kirby told CNN, “There’s real concern that they could take what they’ve learned … come back home and conduct terror attacks.” But of course ISIS is just a Middle East regional threat … until they are not.
Douglas McAuthur McCain, of San Diego, California, was killed over the weekend fighting for the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), according to the Free Syrian Army. Photos of McCain’s passport and of his body — which feature a distinctive neck tattoo — have been seen by NBC News. According to an activist linked to the Free Syrian Army who also saw the body and travel document, McCain was among three foreign jihadis fighting with ISIS who died during the battle.
Senior administration officials told NBC News they were aware that McCain was killed in Syria and that his family was informed on Monday. The officials added that they believe dozens of Americans have gone to Syria to fight with extremist groups – including, but not limited to, ISIS.
“The threat we are most concerned about to the homeland is that of fighters like this returning to the U.S. and committing acts of terrorism,” a senior administration official told NBC News.
Like U.S. officials, the group characterized McCain as an ISIS fighter and said he was killed battling al-Nusra Front, an al Qaeda-linked organization that the U.S. government has blacklisted as a foreign terror organization.
McCain was not the first American to fight alongside militants in Syria. Attorney General Eric Holder estimated this summer that there are 7,000 foreign fighters in the war-ravaged Middle Eastern nation. “Dozens of Americans, perhaps up to 100,” are among those who have tried to join various militant groups there, State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf told CNN.
Yet McCain’s death takes on added significance, perhaps urgency, given that he’s believed to be the first American killed while fighting with ISIS.