The violent end of Ali Medlej, along with Xristos Katsiroubas, his chum from school whom he helped convert to Islam, came in the North African desert in an attack on an Algerian gas plant that left 37 hostages dead, most of them incinerated in an explosion that likely also purposely killed the Canadian attackers.
That was their startling end.
Now everyone, even those close to the young men, wonder where their dark odyssey began.
While the geography is somewhat clear — from London to Edmonton to Morocco, Mauritania, Mali and, ultimately, to the ill-fated gas plant in In Amenas, Algeria — it is the psychological journey, from suburban rascals to jihadi commandos, that leaves friends befuddled.
Another in their high school clique, Aaron Yoon, who was with them in North Africa is in jail in Mauritania for terrorist activity.
Here, my colleagues and I follow their trail: http://natpo.st/16DIiVq via @nationalpost