The accused terrorist standing trial for conspiring to blow up thousands of revelers gathered at “The Tree” lighting ceremony in Portland November of 2010, was revealed on tape in a Portland courtroom Friday dialing the number that would detonate the bomb. It was a bomb Mohamed Mohamud declared “beautiful” earlier in the day. 

The bomb was constructed of six blue large barrels and was situated in the back of a rented van parked on Yamhill Street across from Pioneer Courthouse Square. It smelled of diesel fuel. In reality, it was a fake. 

While I know I’ll be able to hear the tape over and over again before the trial is over, I’m disappointed I couldn’t be in court first hand Friday afternoon when the tape leading up to the detonation of the bomb and the arrest of Mohamed Mohamud was first played in a Portland courtroom. I have reported the tic toc of the day by the man called “Youssef,” an FBI agent (here), but this excerpt fills in the blanks on conversation leading up to the detonation. Moments before, “Hussein,” the undercover FBI agent, told the then 19 year old to activate the bomb with a toggle switch between their seats in the front seat of the van. It was a toggle switch Mo Mo himself had purchased.

From the Oregonian:

From the Zero:“Allahu akbar,” Hussein says. (God is great.) Then to Mohamud: “You ready?”“Ready,” he says.Hussein continues to pray in Arabic: “I bear witness there is no God but God.”He hands Mohamud a cell phone and reads a number, which Mohamud dials on the keypad.The phone rings, but nothing happens.“Hang up,” Hussein orders. “How is the signal?”Mohamud says it’s fine. So Hussein says they should get out of the SUV and try it again.

 Huffpo picks up the narrative:

The recording crackles as the FBI agent reads out numbers and the teenager punches them into his black disposable Nokia cellphone. He then apparently encounters an error.

“Dial it again,” the man said, words that were in fact the cue for his fellow agents. Mohamud dialed again and waited for the explosion.Instead: “FBI, FBI, FBI! Get down!”

The Bike Gallery on SW 10th Ave is
 Pick Up Spot for Terrorist Prior to

See what happens next from my previous post here. 

Both undercover agents have spent days on the stand at the Federal Court House. The courtroom is sealed to protect their identities. 

Mohamud’s defense team has tried to show in their cross examinations that at every turn the FBI managed the bombing plot. Friday morning, one of the defense attorneys Lisa Hay was upbraided by the Judge for trying to ask one of the FBI agents “Is it fair to say you don’t want to be here to testify?” Her entire line of questioning was shot down in an exchange out of earshot of the jurors. 

The defense stipulates Mohamud dialed the number to detonate the bomb–twice–but claim the FBI made him do it.

What would someone have to say to make you murder thousands of people? 

The trial continues Tuesday.
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