Douglas McCain

Douglas M McCain
Born January 29, 1981
Chicago, Illinois
Died c. August 23, 2014(2014-08-23) (aged 33)
Cause of death Killed By Free Syrian Army
Residence New Hope, Minnesota
Nationality United States
Employer African Spice restaurant[1]
Organization Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant
Home town San Diego, California[1]
Religion Sunni Islam (since 2004)
Criminal charge Disorderly conduct (2000)[2]
Obstruction (2006)[2]

Douglas McAuthur McCain (January 29, 1981 – August 23/24, 2014) was an American jihadist who was killed in Syria in late August 2014, in an encounter with the Free Syrian Army while fighting for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). Originally from San Diego, California, McCain, a graduate from Robbinsdale Cooper High School in New Hope, Minnesota, converted to Islam in 2004, and traveled to Syria by way of Turkey in early 2014.[1][3][4][5][6][7]

He was the first U.S. citizen known to be killed while fighting for the ISIL.[8]

At the time of McCain's death, there were reportedly "dozens" more Americans fighting in Syria for Islamic militant groups.[9] The first U.S. citizen killed fighting in the Syrian Civil War was Moner Mohammad Abu-Salha in May 2014.[9] McCain attended the same high school as did Troy Kastigar, also from the U.S., died as an Islamic extremist, in 2009 in Somalia. The two may have been roommates.[10]


McCain was born in Chicago, Illinois. He moved from Chicago to Minnesota before moving again to California after high school.[1] He attended Robbinsdale Cooper High School from 1997–99, before transferring to nearby Robbinsdale Armstrong High School; he never graduated. Robbinsdale Cooper was also the school Troy Kastigar had attended, and McCain may have lived in Kastigar's house for a while, in 2000 and 2001. He loved basketball and was a fan of the Chicago Bulls,[10] and was an aspiring rapper.[11] McCain racked up a criminal record with minor charges including traffic violations, disorderly conduct, and giving false names to police officers; by 2004 he had converted to Islam (according to a Tweet ten years later in which he said it was "the best thing that ever happen[ed]" to him[1]). He traveled to Europe, and by 2013 was back in San Diego where he worked in a mosque (other sources say he worked in Somali restaurant, and "frequented" a mosque[1]).[10]

According to a former classmate he was eager to talk about Islam and his conversion, but remained respectful of others' beliefs and was not radical.[10] He was active on social media, with the handle "Duale Khalid" on Twitter and "Duale ThaslaveofAllah" on Facebook.[1]

McCain was killed in fights with the Free Syrian Army in the weekend of August 23/24, 2014, and was found with $800 in cash on his body and a US passport.[1]

See also


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Koplowitz, Howard (August 26, 2014). "Who Is Douglas McAuthur McCain? American Killed Fighting For ISIS". International Business Times. Retrieved August 27, 2014.
  2. 1 2 Collman, Ashley (26 August 2014). "American-born ISIS militant is killed in Syria: Married San Diego rapper, 33, became radicalized after chatting to jihadists online". Dailymail. Retrieved November 14, 2014.
  3. Vinograd, Cassandra; Ammar Cheikh Omar (August 26, 2014). "American Douglas McAuthur McCain Dies Fighting for ISIS in Syria". Retrieved August 29, 2014.
  4. Perry, Tony; Brian Bennett (August 27, 2014). "Douglas McCain: From San Diego to Syria as alleged ISIS fighter". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved August 29, 2014.
  5. Murphy, Esme (August 27, 2014). "How Did Douglas McCain Become A Terrorist?". CBS Minnesota. Retrieved August 29, 2014.
  6. McNeal, Gregory S. (June 13, 2014), Americans Fighting For ISIS Could Face Array Of Criminal Charges, Forbes, retrieved August 27, 2014
  7. Ibrahim, Mukhtar (June 12, 2014). "Jihad in Syria lures Somalis from Minnesota". MPR. Retrieved August 27, 2014.
  8. McCoy, Terrence (August 27, 2014). "How Douglas McAuthur McCain became the first American to die fighting for the Islamic State". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 29, 2014.
  9. 1 2 Ray Sanchez and Greg Botelho (August 28, 2014). "US probes how Americans are lured to Syria". KPRC Houston. CNN. Retrieved August 29, 2014.
  10. 1 2 3 4 Forliti, Amy (August 28, 2014). "High school buddies followed similar path to jihad". MSN. Retrieved August 29, 2014.
  11. Soergel, Andrew (August 27, 2014). "Douglas McAuthur McCain: Basketball Player, Rapper, Islamic State Fighter – US News". U.S. News & World Report. Retrieved September 3, 2014.
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