Salem al-Hazmi

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Salem al-Hazmi (Arabic: سالم الحازمي‎, Sālam al-Ḥāzmī, also transliterated as Alhazmi) (February 2, 1981 – September 11, 2001) was one of five hijackers of American Airlines Flight 77 as part of the September 11 attacks.

A Saudi, Hazmi had a relatively long history with al-Qaeda before being selected for the attacks. He obtained a tourist visa through the Visa Express program and arrived in the United States in June 2001.

On September 11, 2001, Hazmi boarded American Airlines Flight 77 and helped subdue the passengers and crew for Hani Hanjour, the pilot among the hijackers, to crash the plane into west facade of the Pentagon. His older brother, Nawaf al-Hazmi, was another hijacker aboard the same flight. At the age of 20 years and 221 days he was the youngest hijacker who participated in the attacks.

Contents

History

Hazmi was born on February 2, 1981 to Muhammad Salim al-Hazmi, a grocer, in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. His father described Salem as a quarrelsome teenager who had problems with alcohol and petty theft. However, he stopped drinking and began to attend the mosque about three months before he left his family.[1]

There are reports that he fought in Afghanistan with his brother, Nawaf al-Hazmi, and other reports say the two fought together in Chechnya. Salem al-Hazmi was an al-Qaeda veteran by the time he was selected for participation in the 9/11 attacks. U.S intelligence learned of Hazmi's involvement with al-Qaeda as early as 1999, but he was not placed on any watchlists.[2]

Known as Bilal during the preparations,[3] both he and Ahmed al-Ghamdi flew to Beirut in November 2000, though on separate flights.

Along with Nawaf al-Hazmi and several other future hijackers, Salem al-Hazmi may have attended the 2000 Al Qaeda Summit in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It was there that the details of the 9/11 attacks were decided upon.

In the United States

According to the FBI and the 9/11 Commission report, Hazmi first entered the United States on June 29, 2001, although there are numerous unconfirmed reports that he was living in San Antonio, Texas with fellow hijacker Satam al-Suqami much earlier.[4] Hazmi used the controversial Visa Express program to gain entry into the country.

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