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FBI Reveals Arizona ISIS Recruiter Sent US College Kid To Die For ISIS

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Saagar Enjeti White House Correspondent
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Federal prosecutors revealed this week that an indicted Arizona man helped a 24-year-old U.S. college student join Islamic State in Syria, where he died in November, 2015.

The FBI indicted Ahmed Mohammed el Gammal in August, 2015, but only revealed the death of U.S. college student Samy Mohammed El-Goarany this week. Goarany was raised in Middletown, N.Y. and attended college in Manhattan in 2014. Sometime in 2014 he began showing an interest in radical Islam, and began making pro-ISIS comments online.

Goarany connected with Gammal on a forum, and continued to communicate via encrypted messaging software recommended by Edward Snowden, the FBI alleges. Gammal then allegedly traveled to New York in October, 2014, to help facilitate Goarany’s trip to Turkey. The FBI believes Goarany received military-style training in Turkey, before passing into Syria in February, 2015.

After arriving, Goarany sent Gammal an incriminating message, saying, “It’s been a long time, but I’m doing well and just want you to know I’m safe and secure and everything is going according to plan.” When the FBI arrested Gammal in August, 2015, he reached out to the still alive Goarany to release a video alleging Gammal’s innocence.

“I didn’t come to this decision with anybody’s influence or anybody’s recruitment. I came here. It was my decision and mine alone. Nobody financed me to come here. Nobody bought my plane ticket. All that with my own money. Nobody showed me the way to get here,” Goarany alleged in a YouTube video meant to exonerate Gammal. “I’m making this video just to let the authorities know this,” he continued.

Goarany’s relatives later received a message from an anonymous source representing him in November, 2015, saying, “If you’re reading this then know that I’ve been killed in battle and am now with our Lord.”

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