I, for one, am not sorry to see them go.
Before he was killed, Awlaki inspired, cajoled and preached violent jihad via the internet. He inspired--caused--the Fort Hood "work place shooting" by Major Nidal Hasan and he was with three of the 9/11
hijackers living in San Diego. He has issued fatwas inciting violent and because of his English speaking skills, is a favorite of home grown jihadis--including our own Mohamed Mohamud in Portland.
Here's what Wiki says about him for what it's worth:
U.S. officials say that as imam at a mosque in Falls Church, Virginia (2001-2002), which had 3,000 members, al-Aulaqi spoke with and preached to three of the 9/11 hijackers, who were al-Qaeda members. In 2001, he presided at the funeral of the mother of Nidal Malik Hasan, an Army psychiatrist who later e-mailed him extensively in 2008-2009 before the Fort Hood shootings. During the period of Al-Alwaki's later radical period after 2006-2007, when he went into hiding, he was associated with Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the Nigerian who attempted the 2009 Christmas Day bombing of an American airliner. Al-Alwaki was allegedly involved in planning the latter's attack.Samir Khan had two online publications which served to motivate and incite acts of violence in the United States--including the one planned by Mo Mo--Jihad Recollections and Inspire. When he came under closer FBI scrutiny, Khan bugged out from his North Carolina home and went to Yemen to join the jihad on the field of battle.
The Yemeni government began trying him in absentia in November 2010, for plotting to kill foreigners and being a member of al-Qaeda. A Yemeni judge ordered that he be captured "dead or alive". U.S. officials alleged that in 2009, al-Aulaqi was promoted to the rank of "regional commander" within al-Qaeda. He repeatedly called for jihad against the United States.
Here's a 'highlight' from his wiki page:
After moving to Yemen he became the editor of Inspire. In an article written by Khan and published in Inspire titled "I am proud be a traitor to America", Khan outlined his grievances against the United States. According to Ben Venzke, CEO ofIntelCenter, "The primary focus of the magazine is to inspire individuals to not just fly to Yemen and join the group, but rather to provide them with the inspiration, the ideological framework, the targeting philosophy and the practical mechanics of building a bomb or conducting a shooting." Another article by Khan was titled "Make a Bomb in the Kitchen of Your Mom." Khan authored a sixteen-page English-language manual entitled Expectations Full about how to deal with the difficulties of life training to be a suicide bomber. The manual includes claims that the government of Saudi Arabia is "working alongside evil jinns" and called for attacks within the United States.