Though initial speculation on the San Bernardino, California shooting attack was that it was a case of workplace violence, the FBI now says they are treating it as a “terrorism” case because of signs of “radicalization” of one of the shooters.
That shooter is Tashfeen Malik, the wife of fellow gunman Syed Farook. Malik reportedly made a post on Facebook in which she “pledged allegiance” to ISIS, and had also made a post Wednesday praising ISIS leaders.
Pakistani-born Malik came to the United States in 2014 on a fiancee visa. Farook, her husband, was born in Chicago, but his parents were from Pakistan. The two reportedly met online. Pakistan’s Interior Ministry says they are assisting the US with background on Malik.
Despite Malik’s mentioning of ISIS on Facebook, the FBI concedes there is no evidence that ISIS or any other organized terror network was behind this attack. At most, then, the attack would be “ISIS inspired,” and not an incident of the group attacking on US soil.
Investigators discovered several destroyed electronic devices in the trash at the couple’s home, and items “common to the manufacture of pipe bombs.”
A pledge of allegiance to ISIS isn’t necessarily a sign of a person being directly connected to ISIS. Several previous lone-wolf attackers had also claimed to be affiliated with ISIS even though they weren’t. ISIS, eager to claim credit for any successful attacks, also makes no efforts to correct false claims of involvement.