The Nigerian student Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab had tried to blow up a Delta Airlines flight with 289-passengers onboard – but he failed in his mission.
He is lucky to have escaped the gallows – his life has been spared, he has been, instead, sentenced to life imprisonment.
Memories of Christmas Day of 2009 are difficult to erase from memory. The flight was headed for Detroit and the student, 22-year old at the time, attempted to blow it up by using explosives concealed in his underpants.
He did ignite the bomb but it failed to explode and the 289 lives were spared a tragic death in mid-air. The passengers and crew overpowered the student.
During trials Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab pleaded guilty and said that he wanted to carry out the suicide attack because he wanted to avenge the killing of Muslims by the USA. In his opinion, it was a directive of God.
The boy had, apparently, been influenced by Anwar al Awlaki, a cleric of al-Qaeda based in Yemen.