After the shootings at the Washington Navy Yard in Washington, D.C., on September 16, 2013, jihadists expressed their joy and their hope that the attack came in response to the recent speech by Ayman al-Zawahiri in which the al-Qaeda leader called for strikes in America.
Users on the top-tier jihadi forums Shumukh al-Islam and al-Fida' wrote, for example, "O blessings, your prayer O Sheikh Ayman [has been answered]... Here are the lone-wolves working from within the headquarters of the Marines," and "Allah willing, this is a response to the speech of Sheikh al-Zawahiri". Recalling the November 2009 Fort Hood shooting by Nidal Hasan, one jihadist remarked: "In the Ummah [Muslim community] there are a thousand Nidals, Allah permitting".
Zawahiri said in the speech released on September 12, 2013, for the twelfth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks: "And keeping America in tension and anticipation only costs a few disparate attacks here and there, meaning as we defeated it in the gang warfare in Somalia, Yemen, Iraq and Afghanistan, so we should follow it with that war on its own land. These disparate strikes can be done by one brother or a few of the brothers. and with these strikes, we must monitor and lie in wait and seize any opportunity to land a large strike on it, even if it takes years of patience for this."
Following is a translation of a sampling of the message postings:
Allahu Akbar [Allah is Great].
In the Ummah there are a thousand Nidals, Allah permitting.
Allah willing, this is a response to the speech of Sheikh al-Zawahiri.
To hell and what a fate.
O Allah, direct the shots.
O blessings, your prayer O Sheikh Ayman [has been answered]... Here are the lone-wolves working from within the headquarters of the Marines.
Three armed men attack the headquarters of the Marines in America? Why? Did they not have work? O Allah, unless... O Allah, make what I'm thinking to be true.
[Abu Omar al-Filistini]
We ask Allah that these acts are by the soldiers of al-Zawahiri.
Do you know O loved ones, that the number of searches on Google for the issue of Inspire magazine regarding the manufacture of explosives at home has increased in an astonishing way that cannot be imagined in America and Europe after the operation by Djohar Tsarnaev, may Allah accept him and his brother Tamer [Tamerlan]... And that is simply by the Western media saying that the brothers got inspiration from the magazine for this idea.