[...]But according to these sources, Shahzad also had a web of jihadist contacts that included big names tied to terror attacks in the U.S. and abroad, including the figure who has emerged as a central figure in many recent domestic terror attempts - radical American-born Muslim cleric Anwar Awlaki.We were discussing this and Jane hit the nail on the head:
I thought they were monitoring Anwar's communications and that's how they knew about Nidal Hasan and picked up chatter about the Nigerian.Nothing to see hear, move along. It isn't like Shahzad was going to kill innocent people, oh wait....
Cross posted at the Jawa Report
Update by Jane( Jawa report):The WSJ clarifies the relationship- Shahzad was inspired by Awlaki's writings available online but there doesn't appear to be any direct communications at this point.
U.S. officials said that Mr. Shahzad didn't appear to have communicated with Anwar al-Awlaki, the radical U.S.-born cleric who exchanged dozens of emails with suspected Fort Hood shooter Maj. Nidal Hasan in the run-up to the November assault that left 13 soldiers dead.
But the officials said Mr. Shahzad told his interrogators that he read Mr. Awlaki's English-language writings calling for holy war against Western targets and was moved to action, at least in part, by the cleric's exhortations.