Osman Barre contacted the FBI back in 2009 after his son, Somali-American terrorism suspect Mohamed Osman Mohamud, told him he was planning to fly to Yemen to learn Arabic. Mohamud’s announcement came at a time when other Somali-American teenagers were joining up with overseas terrorist organizations. Barre was frightened by what he saw, prompting him to contact the FBI and say he feared his son was being brainwashed by al-Qaida recruiters.
His mind has since changed.
Based on what he has said in court, Barre now believes that it was the FBI, not al-Qaida, who brainwashed his son.
Mohamud is currently on trial in an Oregon court for attempting to detonate a bomb at a Portland Christmas-tree lighting ceremony in November 2010. He got the bomb from undercover FBI agents who Mohamud thought were al-Qaida members. Although Barre reaching out to the FBI about his son’s actions certainly brought more attention on the boy, the bureau had already been watching Mohamud for months and was tracking his online interactions with Islamic radicals.
After the prosecution rested their case against Mohamud on Monday, Barre took the stand to testify for the defense. While being cross-examined by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ethan Knight, Barre was asked why he chose to use the term "brainwashed" when speaking about his son to FBI agents. Barre interrupted the question and said, "Can I tell you, the FBI brainwashed my son."
Defense attorneys for Mohamud have been making the case that the FBI could have informed his parents about the contacts with radicals, especially once Barre contacted the bureau. According to the testimonies of FBI agents, those working the investigation felt that providing that information would have compromised what they were doing.
The trial continues this week.
Source: (Huffington Post)