- News in Photo
Orlando gunman raged against ‘filthy ways of the west’ on Facebook just before shooting: US Senate committee
Orlando gunman Omar Mateen apparently made a series of Facebook posts and searches before and during his attack on a gay nightclub, raging against the “filthy ways of the west” and blaming the US for the deaths of “innocent women and children,” according to a US Senate committee letter released Wednesday.
The killer whose rampage left 49 people dead also searched for “Pulse Orlando” and “Shooting” online on the morning of the carnage Sunday and said on Facebook: “America and Russia stop bombing the Islamic state,” according to the letter.
The Senate Homeland Security Committee sent the letter to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, asking the company to produce information on Mateen’s online activity and to provide a briefing to the panel.
The letter illuminating Mateen’s state of mind in the final hours of his life was released as the long, sad procession of memorials and funerals for the victims began in Orlando and as the FBI appealed for the public’s help in reconstructing the killer’s movements. The FBI is also trying to establish how much Mateen’s wife may have known about the attack at Pulse dance club.
Mateen posted on Facebook moments before the attack began, said a source familiar with the situation who is not authorised to speak publicly.
In its letter, the committee said staffers have learned that five Facebook accounts were associated with the 29-year-old American-born Muslim. “The real muslims will never accept the filthy ways of the west,” Mateen wrote, according to the letter from committee chairman Sen. Ron Johnson, a Wisconsin Republican. Johnson did not say how he learned of the posts other than to cite “information obtained by my staff.”
As he did in his call to a 911 operator during the massacre, Mateen pledged his allegiance on Facebook to the leader of the Islamic State and, in his final post, warned: “in the next few days you will see attacks from the Islamic state in the usa.” (AP)