Oops, I mean Christian radicals…no Jewish radicals…oh wait.
[quote]WASHINGTON (CNN) – The federal government charged five alleged “Islamic radicals” with plotting to kill U.S. soldiers at Fort Dix in New Jersey.
A sixth was charged with aiding and abetting the illegal possession of firearms by three of the others.
“The philosophy that supports and encourages jihad around the world against Americans came to live here in New Jersey and threaten the lives of our citizens through these defendants,” New Jersey U.S. Attorney Christopher J. Christie said at a news conference Tuesday.
“Fortunately, law enforcement in New Jersey was here to stop them,” he said.
The group’s intention “was to conduct an armed assault on the army base and to kill as many soldiers as possible,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office for New Jersey said.
The six were arrested Monday night “as two of the defendants were meeting a confidential government witness to purchase three AK-47 automatic machine guns, and four semi-automatic M-16s to be used in an attack they had been planning from at least January 2006,” according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
The six – three of them brothers – heard the charges against them Tuesday in federal court. Six complaints were filed, each naming one of the six as defendant.
Disturbing video tips off FBI
According to an FBI affidavit filed with the criminal complaints, the case began to take shape in January 2006, when an employee of a store told the FBI someone had brought a “disturbing” video to be duplicated.
The video "depicted 10 young men who appeared to be in their early 20s shooting assault weapons at a firing range in a militia-like style while calling for jihad and shouting in Arabic ‘Allah Akbar,’ " (Arabic for “God is Great”), the affidavit said.
The FBI and Joint Terrorism Task Force began an investigation immediately, according to the affidavit filed by Special Agent John J. Ryan.
Two paid informants successfully infiltrated the group, one in March 2006 and the other in July, Ryan’s affidavit said. Both of them “consensually recorded” meetings and conversations, the affidavit said.
One of the informants claimed to have connections with an arms dealer who could sell the alleged conspirators AK-47 automatic machine guns and other weapons, according to the affidavit. Both took part in firearms training with the group, the affidavit said.
The men rented a house in the Poconos to use for training in December 2006, Christie said.
“Most despicably, while they were training in the Poconos, they also watched more videos depicting more attacks on U.S. military personnel around the world,” Christie said.
“They watched the blowing off of the arm of a United States Marine and the room burst out into laughter,” he said.
Some of the defendants in the U.S. illegally
The U.S. Attorney’s Office said the three brothers involved, all with the last name Duka, were born in the former Yugoslavia and are illegally residing in the United States. It identified them as Eljvir, 23, Shain, 26, and Dritan, 28, and said the three operate businesses known as Qadr Inc., Colonial Roofing and National Roofing.
The other three men charged are Mohamad Ibrahim Shnewer, 22, of Cherry Hill, New Jersey, a U.S. citizen born in Jordan who is employed as a taxicab driver in Philadelphia; Serdar Tatar, 23, of Philadelphia, born in Turkey, whose last known employment was at a 7-Eleven; and Agron Abdullahu, 24, of Buena Vista Township, born in the former Yugoslavia and employed at a Shop-Rite Supermarket.
Abdullahu is charged only with aiding and abetting the Duka brothers’ illegal possession of weapons, which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison, the attorney’s office said.
The complaint said the group conducted firearms training in Gouldsboro, Pennsylvania, in the Pocono Mountains. It also said Shnewer conducted surveillance at several U.S. military sites: Fort Dix and Fort Monmouth in New Jersey, Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, and the U.S. Coast Guard building in Philadelphia.
It said Tatar acquired a map of Fort Dix and distributed it to others.
According to the FBI affidavit, Tatar had delivered pizzas to Fort Dix while working for his family’s restaurant, and Shnewer said Tatar knew the base “like the palm of his hand.”
According to the complaint, Dritan Duka ordered four AK-47 Kalashnikov fully automatic machine guns as well as M-16 firearms and handguns, and Shnewer ordered an AK-47 Kalashnikov.
Authorities said there is no suspected link to any international terrorist group.
White House spokesman Tony Snow said the six “are not being charged with being members of an international terrorism organization. At least at this point there is no evidence they received direction from international foreign terrorist organizations. However their involvement in weapons training, operational surveillance, and discussions about killing American military personnel warranted a strong law enforcement response.”
While authorities are glad to have arrested them, the individuals are “hardly hard-core terrorists,” one law enforcement source said.
Another source said that while the allegations are “troubling,” they are “not the type that made the hair on the back of your neck stand up.”
Fort Dix is used to train members of the Army Reserve and National Guard for missions in Iraq, Afghanistan and around the world.
It was used in 1999 to house ethnic Albanian refugees from Kosovo, according to the Defense Department Web site.[/quote]
Will the Islamophobia never end?