New Al Qaeda leader is former US resident The FBI provided these undated images of Adnan Shukrijumah, the new chief of Al Qaedaâ€™s global operations. (FBI via Associated Press) MIAMI â€” A suspected Al Qaeda operative who lived for more than 15 years in the United States has become chief of the terrorism networkâ€™s global operations, the FBI says, marking the first time a leader so intimately familiar with American society has been placed in charge of planning attacks.Adnan Shukrijumah, 35, has taken over a position once held by 9/11 coordinator Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who was captured in 2003, said Brian LeBlanc, a Miami-based FBI counterterrorism agent, in an exclusive interview. That puts Shukrijumah in regular contact with Al Qaedaâ€™s senior leadership, including Osama bin Laden, LeBlanc said. Shukrijumah and two other leaders were part of an â€œexternal operations councilâ€™â€™ that designed and approved terrorism plots and recruits, but his two counterparts were killed in US drone attacks, leaving Shukrijumah as the de facto chief. â€œHeâ€™s making operational decisions is the best way to put it,â€™â€™ said LeBlanc, the FBIâ€™s lead Shukrijumah investigator. â€œHeâ€™s looking at attacking the US and other Western countries. Basically through attrition, he has become his old boss.â€™â€™ The FBI has been searching for Shukrijumah since 2003. He is thought to be the only Al Qaeda leader to have once held permanent US resident status, or a green card. Shukrijumah was named earlier this year in a federal indictment as a conspirator in the case against three men accused of plotting suicide bomb attacks on New Yorkâ€™s subway system in 2009. The indictment marked the first criminal charges against Shukrijumah, who previously had been sought as a witness. Shukrijumahâ€™s mother, Zurah Adbu Ahmed, said Thursday outside her home in Miramar, Fla., that her son frequently talked about what he considered the excesses of American society â€” such as alcohol and drug abuse and women wearing skimpy clothes â€” but that he did not condone violence. She said she has not had contact with her son for several years.