On March 9, 2010 – the day U.S. authorities announced terrorism charges against a blonde, white American woman who called herself Jihad Jane – senior government officials repeatedly described the arrest as a seminal event in the war on terror. The case was so serious, authorities said, that they charged the woman, Colleen LaRose, with crimes that could keep her in prison for the rest of her life. 

Now, as she awaits sentencing, a months-long Reuters review of confidential documents and interviews with sources in Europe and the United States — including the first and only interview with Jihad Jane herself — reveals a far less menacing and, in some ways, more preposterous undertaking than what the U.S. government asserted.

SPECIAL REPORT – Jane’s Jihad: the new face of terrorism


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