Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab deltok i chatteforum på nettet der han fortalte om sin ensomhet og konflikter. Det er et underlig fenomen: massmordere blottlegger sitt sjelsliv på nettet som om de lå på Freuds divan.
«I have no one to speak too [sic],» read a posting from January 2005, when Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was attending boarding school. «No one to consult, no one to support me and I feel depressed and lonely. I do not know what to do. And then I think this loneliness leads me to other problems.»
The Washington Post reviewed 300 online postings under the name «farouk1986» (a combination of Abdulmutallab’s middle name and birth year). The postings mused openly about love and marriage, his college ambitions and angst over standardized testing, as well as his inner struggle as a devout Muslim between liberalism and extremism. In often-intimate writings, posted between 2005 and 2007, he sought friends online, through Facebook and in Islamic chat rooms: «My name is Umar but you can call me Farouk.» He often invited readers to «have your say» and once wrote, «May Allah reward you for reading and reward you more for helping.»