Arrested: Jihadi jerk who threatened "South Park" over Mohammed episode

Christ, what an asshole. Zachary Chesser, an unemployed 20-year-old man in Virginia who this year threatened South Park's creators over an episode featuring the Prophet Muhammad dressed in a bear suit, has been arrested on federal charges "after speaking openly to the FBI about his connection to a terror organization and his plans to travel overseas to fight with the group."

The organization known as Al-Shabaab (the longer version of their name means "Movement of Warrior Youth") is identified by the US as a terror group affiliated with al-Qaeda. Mr. Chesser was Jewish, but converted to a wacked-out, militant crazystrain of Islam that involves uploading jihadi videos to YouTube and invoking assassination unto the creators of Cartman and Butters. Snip from TSG:

According to the below affidavit sworn by FBI Agent Mary Brandt Kinder, Chesser, a convert to Islam, spoke at length with agents about his attempts to travel to Kenya and Somalia to join Al-Shabaab and his devotion to jihad, which has included his operation of web sites and a You Tube channel stocked with jihadi propaganda. Through the revolutionmuslim.com site, Chesser remarked in April that "South Park" creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker would "probably end up" like a Dutch filmmaker who was murdered in retaliation for a film critical of the treatment of Islamic women. Along with focusing the public's attention on his extremist beliefs, Chesser's "South Park" threat resulted in fallout within his family. After his mother received death threats following the "South Park" remarks, Chesser told the FBI, "he was no longer on speaking terms with his parents." During one of his interviews with federal agents, Chesser explained how he came up with the YouTube user ID, LearnTeachFightDie: "learn Islam, teach Islam, fight for Islam, and die in the name of Islam."

View the documents at Smoking Gun. (thanks, Martha Clayton!)

22

  1. identified by the US as a terror group affiliated with al-Qaeda

    So, uh, is this an accusation that could conceivably be confirmed or disproved on any objective grounds, or are you “affiliated with al-Qaeda” as soon as you’re “identified by the US” that way … by definition?

  2. Please note: No invasions of privacy needed. No airport security needed. Just a stupid guy and some alert FBI agents. Yay cops!

  3. He seems to have mainly craved for action. I wonder what difference in motive two twenty year olds would feature, one of which enlists for Afghanistan, and the other of which enlists for the Quaida.
    Also, i would have thought the ‘threat’ to have been a lot more explicit – Predict’o’wishing somebody will end up just like another ideological adversary, murdered, is a mainstay of extremist discourse all over the board.

    btw, go read that linked article on Al-Shabaab – that is truly interesting stuff.

    1. “He seems to have mainly craved for action. I wonder what difference in motive two twenty year olds would feature, one of which enlists for Afghanistan, and the other of which enlists for the Quaida.”

      That’s a pretty harsh and inconsiderate thing to say. What about those Afghan soldiers who don’t “crave for action” but instead who crave for survival? Or those who genuinely want to be able to feed and protect their families?

      1. I didn’t take the comment as harsh or inconsiderate.

        I’m american, and I see many, many young men join the military because they “want some action.” They may dress it up with nice rhetoric, and sometimes that just amounts to being really sure you’re right, so you can be belligerent.

        I do see similarities. And support neither.

        1. Sneer at them all you want, meanwhile the soldiers who fight against Islamic militants are all that stands between people who want to live, and people who want to kill. Yes, both are violent entities, but only one of them is dedicated to defend you against the other. It’s a pity you seem to be unable to recognize the importance of this difference. “Harsh and inconsiderate” was an understatement.

          1. Sneer at them all you want, meanwhile the jihadis who fight against American invaders are all that stands between people who want to live, and people who want to kill.

          2. You seem to have misunderstood my intent – while i much appreciate that someone will run into a burning house to rescue me/ lay down her life in fighting people who would like to(though with all probability would never get around to) kill me / do anything to reduce some threat to me, i do not necessarily like that person, or her motives. The firefighter might be in it for the action, as repentance for some grueling crime, or because he wants to save the world – that does not make a tad of difference in me appreciating the deed.
            I was talking about his motive behind joining the Army, not the motive behind the Army, or the motive of every single soul in the Army.

            What i was getting at with my comment was the immense societal opportunity that would lie in discovering the ulterior motives in young people specifically joining the martial Jihadis – and my guess is, that by cancelling out commonalities with motives for joining the Army, what is left over would be most interesting to know if one would like to repurpose that drive into somehting useful for society.

          3. Thanks for trying to clarify.

            “the immense societal opportunity that would lie in discovering the ulterior motives in young people specifically joining the martial Jihadis”

            Ulterior motives are irrelevant; what’s important is the motive the two fighters don’t have in common, which by definition excludes ulterior motives like craving for action since that’s what (some) fighters on different sides might very well have in common.

            What annoyed me about your first post was the (probably (and hopefully) unintentional) implication that the fighters on both sides are like animals incapable of thought, driven by instincts as opposed to long-term goals. The Taliban and Al-Qaeda have an agenda, and so does the coalition of UN countries who are in Afghanistan. Joining one camp over the other involves making a conscious decision, and to imply otherwise devalues those who make the right decision for good reasons.

            So what you might want to look at is what goals the people on all sides are fighting for. That would explain why some join the Afghan army and others join the Taliban. It would also explain the tactics the different sides are using to achieve their goals. I thought that to be quite obvious…

  4. Maybe we can finally watch the Super Best Friends episode again and finally watch episode 200 & 201 streaming on http://www.southparkstudios.com. It seems rather silly that you can still watch the Cartoon Wars episodes on their website and the other ones aren’t streaming.

    I think we can find a more appropriate word than JERK for this A-hole Chesser. He’s not going to be enjoying his life in the near future so I’ll leave it at that.

    So hopefully Comedy Central finds their testicles and finally streams episode 200 & 201 – with none of the bleeps.

    Here’s to hoping at least.

  5. thank you xeni, for the phrase “wacked-out, militant crazystrain of Islam”. crazystrain indeed.

    i converted to islam when 18, and even though i had done so through a varied bunch of cool, intelligent guys and girls from all over the world, still managed to run into some absolute frakkin wackjobs a few times. scary folk – you could see the fire in their eyes, and it would scare the jeebus out of you.

    thankfully, most of the idiots who get into the news are just regular wackjobs, as opposed to absolute wackjobs.

    /shudder.

  6. Just a minor point, al-shabaab simply translates to “the young people.” The official name of the group (harakat al-shabaab al-mujahideen) is in fact the threatening title you cited, but shabaab is commonly used like the American “you guys” or “y’all” when referring to groups of young people. Though I am sure this was an honest (and common) mistake, the constant use and mistranslation of innocent Arabic words (a la “maktaba,” which means elementary school, for Christ’s sake) leads to a global culture of mistrust and discrimination.

    1. Al Shahaab is a truncated version of the longer, original name of the organization, which does indeed mean what is stated here in English.

  7. He’s Jewish? I’m sure his Al Qaeda brethren would have welcomed him with open arms. Mostly kalashnikovs.

  8. Israel puts a lot of effort into infiltrating Islamic extremist groups. In order to get reliable agents in place, some Jews have to pretend to be Islamic extremists. I think most of them are better at it than the notorious former(?) Jews and self-proclaimed Islamic hard-liners Adam Gadahn, Adam Pearlman, Yousef Al-Khattab, and Zachary Chesser. Some of these Israeli agents and operatives are likely agents provocateurs who are responsible for some real terrorism.

    CAPTCHA: “prongs program”
    = applied dialectics in two words.
    Control both prongs, the thesis and the antithesis, and thus control the synthesis, the program.

Comments are closed.