Suspect admits killing US airmen at German airport

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — A Kosovo Albanian man confessed Wednesday to killing two U.S. airmen at the Frankfurt airport, saying in emotional testimony at the opening of his trial that he had been influenced by radical Islamic propaganda online.

Arid Uka is charged with two counts of murder for the March 2 slaying of Senior Airman Nicholas J. Alden, 25, from South Carolina, and Airman 1st Class Zachary R. Cuddeback, 21, from Virginia.

The 21-year-old Uka also faces three counts of attempted murder for wounding two more airmen and taking aim at a third before his gun jammed.

Although Germany has experienced scores of terrorist attacks in past decades, largely from leftist groups like the Red Army Faction, the airport attack was the first attributed to an Islamic extremist.

Since the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, there have been about a half-dozen other jihadist plots that were either thwarted or failed — including a 2007 plan to kill Americans at the U.S. Air Force’s Ramstein Air Base.

Uka went to the airport with the intent “to kill an indeterminate number of American soldiers, but if possible a large number,” prosecutor Herbert Diemer told a state court in Frankfurt.

No pleas are entered in the German system, and Uka confessed to the killings after the indictment was read, telling the court “what I did was wrong but I cannot undo what I did.” He went on to urge other radical Muslims not to seek inspiration in his attack, urging them not to be taken in by “lying propaganda” on the Internet.

Cooperating with authorities and confessing can help reduce a defendant’s sentence — but Uka refused to tell the court where he obtained the 9mm semi-automatic pistol he used, which Presiding Judge Thomas Sagebiel said meant his confession was incomplete.

Uka described becoming increasingly introverted in the months before the attack, staying at home and playing computer games and watching Islamic extremist propaganda on the Internet.

The night before the crime, Uka said, he followed a link to a video posted on Facebook that purported to show American soldiers raping a teenage Muslim girl. It turned out to be a scene from the 2007 anti-war Brian De Palma film “Redacted,” taken out of context.

He said he then decided he should do anything possible to prevent more American soldiers from going to Afghanistan.

“I thought what I saw in that video, these people would do in Afghanistan,” he told the court, his voice choking with emotion as he wiped away tears.

Prosecutors introduced evidence from Uka’s laptop, cell phone and iPod, which included hundreds of files containing jihadist videos, literature, sermons and songs.

One song went, “Mother be strong, your son is on jihad,” and “do not mourn for me.” A video showed rifle-toting Islamic fighters in Pakistan, and a bullet-holed target with “Obama” scrawled on it. […]

It’s interesting that in this first successful attack in Germany by a Muslim, the Muslim happens to be one of those ‘non-Muslimy’ Balkanites we were sold on. It’s also interesting because Germany was arming and training this boy’s fellow Albanian terrorists, the KLA, as early as 1996. So Germany’s first jihadist attack is actually blowback.

Third, Germany was training this boy’s people to kill Slavs. Not just any Slavs, but the Serbs who gave Nazi Germany a run for its money in WWII. And so it also becomes interesting that this is in fact the first successful attack in Germany in the post-9/11 jihad era, with only half a dozen plots requiring disruption — one of them against U.S. interests, not German ones.

Indeed, why has Germany stayed relatively so immune from attacks by Islamofascists? Could it be professional courtesy between fascists? Could many of Allah’s warriors still harbor a grudging respect for Germany, causing them to draw the line at violence and pursue only legal jihad for now?