This is going to be one of those stories that captures people’s imaginations because it really does read like fiction. If you’ve been keeping up with any news on this topic then you’ll have heard that there are reports of white Americans or Brits taking part in the Nairobi mall attack last week.
In a somewhat bizarre series of events, a British woman, Samantha Lewthwaite, is the subject of a global Interpol “Red Notice”. Per the Interpol website, Lewthwaite “is the widow of Germaine Lindsay, one of the four bombers involved in the 7 July terror attacks in London in 2005, in which 52 people were killed and hundreds more injured.”
After the 2005 bombing, British media gave her the nickname “White Widow” which is both highly creative and very disturbing if you consider that she disappeared completely not long after the attacks. She is now wanted by Kenyan authorities for being in possession of explosives and conspiring to commit a felony dating back to December 2011. One can only speculate as to the specific reasons for this increased scrutiny now but some Kenyan authorities believe that she was directly involved in supporting the most recent attacks in Kenya and that she originally traveled to the country using a falsified South African passport under the name “Natalie Webb.”
Kenya’s Foreign Minister suggested that Lewthwaite wasn’t simply wanted for possessing explosives two years ago but that she was directly involved in the Nairobi mall attack last week.in which 72 were killed and 200 were wounded. The foreign minister also stated that Lewthwaite had “done this many times before” apparently alluding to suspicion that Lewthwaite was involved in a June 2012 grenade attack at a bar in Mombasa.
At the time of the 2005 bombing by her husband and others in London, Lewthwaite claimed to have had no knowledge of her husband’s plans before hand. Given these most recent developments not to mention her subsequent disappearance after the 2005 attack, that ignorance is now being called into question.
Lewthwaite was born in Northern Ireland and converted to Islam circa 2005, the year of the London attacks. After her disappearance she was reported to have been seen in Kenya and then later, Somalia, the home country of al-Qai’da aligned terrorist group, al-Shabab.