WASHINGTON - A massacre at a Texas army base that left 13 people dead is increasingly looking like part of a terror conspiracy rather than an act of a lone gunman.
The growing suspicious are related, among other things, to shooter Nidal Malik Hasan's connection to September 11 terrorists, the funds he is suspected of transferring to Pakistan, and his ties with radical Yemenite cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, associated with al-Qaeda.
By now, officials estimate that these ties were not confined to Hasan's participation in prayer sessions at Al-Awlaki's Virginia mosque and "spiritual advice". While emails exchanges between the two initially focused on religious matters, they later shifted to discussion of financial transfers for operational aims, the Washington Post reported Saturday.
The paper based its report on FBI sources who estimate that the email exchanges point to a terror conspiracy. According to the sources, the ties between Hasan and Awlaki grew closer in recent months and involved discussions regarding the secret transfer of money and other means in order to translate plans into actions.
According to the report, Hasan asked for deliveries of less than $10,000, so he would not be obligated to report them to the army.
The massacre at the Fort Hood base increasingly looks like a terror attack, Senator Carl Levin, who heads the Senate Armed Services Committee, said Friday.
"There are some who are reluctant to call it terrorism but there is significant evidence that is. I'm not at all uneasy saying it sure looks like that," he said.