Intel agency finds anti-American manifesto online by Pensacola shooter

Cheryl Sanders
December 8, 2019

"They learn aviation", said Captain Tim Kinsella, from the Naval Air Station in Pensacola. With their location just a short drive away from NAS, they chose to offer a safe haven. The Pentagon say his training with the U.S. military began in August 2016, and was due to finish in August 2020.

But the shooting hit close to home for Edens.

The shooter at Pensacola - identified by USA and Saudi government officials as Ahmed Mohammed al-Shamrani - appeared to have a similar background.

The main gate at Naval Air Station Pensacola on Navy Boulevard in Pensacola, Fla.

The retired fighter pilot works as an instructor for young members of the Air Force preparing for deployment.

Officials investigating the deadly attack were working Saturday to determine whether it was motivated by terrorism, as both President Donald Trump and Defense Secretary Mark Esper indicated that they would review policies governing foreign military training in the United States.

Once the all-clear arrived, Edens let his wife know he was fine.

Asked whether the shooting would affect the US-Saudi military-to-military relationship, Esper said, "I don't see this undermining the deeper relationship we've had with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for decades".

A USA official who spoke to The Associated Press identified the shooter as Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani. "He died a hero and we are beyond proud".

Saudi Arabia's embassy in Washington did not immediately respond to questions.

The Pentagon said Friday that Alshamrani was in the part of an Air Force military sales training course, and his participation was funded by Saudi Arabia.

On Friday, President Donald Trump said he got a call from Saudi King Salman, who expressed "his honest condolences" and sent sympathies to the families of those involved.

The Saudi government offered condolences to the victims and their families and said it would provide "full support" to the USA authorities investigating the shooting.

But the kingdom's reputation is still damaged after the killing past year of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul. Eight people were hurt in the attack, including the deputy and a second deputy who was with him. Saudi intelligence officials and a forensic doctor killed and dismembered Khashoggi on October 2, 2018, just as his fiancée waited outside the diplomatic mission. It sprawls along the waterfront southwest of the city's downtown and dominates the economy of the surrounding area. He also said that "weapons are not authorized" on the base.

Residents of Pensacola mourned the attacks and offered their condolences to the affected members of the community.

In a moving Facebook post, the victim's brother, Adam, said Watson sacrificed his life for his country.

They say Joshua Kaleb Watson, 23, was shot several times but made it out of the building to alert first responders.

The suspect used a handgun in the attack, which played out over two floors in classroom building at a base whose main function is training.

Haitham's mother, Evelyn Brady, herself a Navy veteran, said the commander of her son's school called her and told her Haitham had tried to stop the shooter. "It eventually evolved into pootis and finally uncle poot", he wrote on Facebook.

On Wednesday, a sailor shot three civilians at the historic Pearl Harbor military base in Hawaii, killing two of them before taking his own life.

Meanwhile, the Federal Bureau of Investigation on Friday night released its official photo of the Saudi gunman at NAS Pensacola, who has been identifed as Mohammed Alshamrani, a 21-year-old 2nd lieutenant in the Royal Saudi Air Force who was a student naval flight officer of Naval Aviation Schools Command. He said he had reported to Pensacola two weeks ago to begin flight training.

Other reports by iNewsToday