Times Square bomb plotter predicts defeat of U.S. as he is sentenced to life


NEW YORK — Expressing no remorse and predicting the “imminent” defeat of the United States at the hands of Muslim forces, Times Square bomber Faisal Shahzad was sentenced to life in prison Tuesday for his attempt to spill blood with a homemade car bomb.

“Brace yourselves, because the war with Muslims has just begun,” Shahzad, 31, warned U.S. District Judge Miriam Cedarbaum in one of several polite but chilling exchanges. “Consider me only a first droplet of the flood that will follow me.”

Shahzad — wearing a white cap, a black prison smock
and longer beard and hair than he did at his June guilty plea — also
for the first time complained about his post-arrest treatment at the
hands of the FBI, and said he was comfortable with his fate because he
saw it as the will of Allah.

“If I am given 1,000 lives, I will sacrifice them
all for the sake of Allah,” said Shahzad.” … Decree whatever you
desire to decree, for you can only decree regarding the life of this

Cedarbaum told him he’d have plenty of time to
consider his actions in the years to come. “I do hope that you will
spend some of the time in prison thinking carefully about whether the
Quran wants you to kill lots of people,” she said.

A naturalized American citizen from Pakistan who was living in Bridgeport, Conn., Shahzad was captured two days after his May 1
bomb attempt. He quickly confessed, telling officials that his plot had
been set in motion by the Pakistani Taliban. He said he was defending
Muslims and retaliating against American attacks on civilians.

Shahzad was held for two weeks after his arrest
without being brought to court. Government officials say he voluntarily
waived his rights to a lawyer. But he told Cedarbaum on Tuesday, ” …
I asked for the Miranda. And the FBI denied it to me for two weeks,
effecting harm to my kids and family, and I was forced to sign those

An FBI spokesman denied threats to Shahzad’s family, as did U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara. Shahzad’s lawyer, Philip Weinstein — who told Cedarbaum that Shahzad asked him to say nothing in court — did not return a call seeking clarification.

Handcuffed behind his back when he entered court,
Shahzad’s cuffs were removed during the sentencing. He occasionally
pointed for emphasis, but spoke conversationally and followed
Cedarbaum’s instructions.

In other comments, he brushed off a question from
the judge about the oath of loyalty he took when he became a U.S.
citizen last year — “I did swear but I did not mean it” — and
incorporated current events in his vision of coming Muslim supremacy.

“Soon the bailout money which is holding up your
fragile economy will run out, and soon you will not be able to afford
the war costs,” he said.

He also blessed Osama bin Laden,
and said like bin Laden he was only fighting to liberate Muslims. “If
you call us terrorists … then we are proud terrorists … and we will
keep on terrorizing until you leave our land and people at peace,” he

Cedarbaum said she was imposing a life sentence without hesitation.

“The defendant has expressed his total lack of
remorse, and his desire if given the opportunity to repeat the crime,”
she said. As she imposed six life sentences, Shahzad twice pointed
upward and said, “Allahu Akbar (God is great).”

“My sentence will be only the limit that God has
given me life in this world,” Shahzad told her near the end.. ” … So
I’m happy with the deal that God has given me.”

He left the courtroom as he entered it — with hands cuffed behind his back. “You are now excused,” Cedarbaum said. “Thank you.”


(c) 2010, Newsday.

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Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.


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