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Somalia terrorist activity in US raises concerns, questions

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Farah Abdi Warsameh/AP

(Read caption) Al-Shabaab fighters display weapons as they conduct military exercises in northern Mogadishu, Somalia on Oct. 21, 2010.

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Over the past year American law enforcement officials have arrested several American citizens and residents on charges of aiding Al Shabab, the rebel group in southern Somalia. At first my impression was that these arrests primarily involved people in the largest Somali-American communities, especially Minneapolis, Minn. But a pattern of arrests elsewhere, especially in California, is convincing me that Al Shabab has supporters – still seemingly few in number – across the US. This poses serious problems for policymakers in Washington as well as for law enforcement.

Here is a partial list of recent arrests (spellings of Al Shabab vary in press reports/releases):

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