U.S. officials have confirmed they are looking into anti-American comments posted on the Twitter account of Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani, the Saudi national who killed three in a shooting at the Pensacola naval base last week.
Federal law enforcement officials are investigating whether the gunman authored the words or just posted them, an official told the Associated Press on condition of anonymity. Another official said that prior to the shooting, the gunman hosted a dinner party where he and three others watched videos of mass shootings.
SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors jihadist media, reported that the gunman did not claim allegiance to any group, but echoed famed Al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden.
BREAKING: Tweet by #Pensacola attacker Alshamrani suggests terrorist motive. Does not claim allegiance to any group, but echos Bin Laden: "The security is a shared destiny…You will not be safe until we live it as reality in [Palestine], and American troops get out of our land." pic.twitter.com/KALH4PXYKy
— Rita Katz (@Rita_Katz) December 7, 2019
“I’m against evil, and America as a whole has turned into a nation of evil,” the post read, according to AFP. “I’m not against you for just being American, I don’t hate you because your freedoms, I hate you because every day you supporting, funding and committing crimes not only against Muslims but also humanity.”
A spokesperson for Twitter told Fox News in an email statement Saturday that the account was suspended but they declined to comment further as to when the manifesto was tweeted out. Several Twitter accounts, including that of Fox & Friends host Pete Hegseth, have been banned after sharing the gunman’s alleged tweet.
The New York Times also reported that the gunman filed a formal complaint earlier this year against one of his instructors, who left him “infuriated” in class by labeling him the derogatory nickname “Porn Stashe.”
On Sunday afternoon, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said in a press conference that the gunman had a social media trail and a “deep-seated hatred of the United States,” and said he believed more strict vetting could have prevented the attack.
President Donald Trump’s national security adviser, Robert O’Brien, said on Face the Nation Sunday that the shooting looked like “terrorism or akin to terrorism,” and mentioned the gunman’s tweets.
“Look, to me it appears to be a terrorist attack,” he said. “I don’t want prejudge the investigation, but it appears that this may be someone that was radicalized.”
— Face The Nation (@FaceTheNation) December 8, 2019