4 arrested in US terrorist plot


by Sunny
21st May, 2009 at 4:31 am    

The New York Times is reporting that four people were arrested in a possible conspiracy to commit terrorism in the United States. Although it should be pointed out that none had any weapons accumulated as yet.

Federal authorities arrested four men on Wednesday night on charges of plotting to bomb a synagogue in the Riverdale section of the Bronx and to use antiaircraft missiles to shoot down military planes at a military base in Newburgh, N.Y., 60 miles north of New York City.

Though Mr. Cromitie, who is described as the lead defendant, is said to have told an F.B.I. informer that he had ties with Jaish-e-Muhammad, a jihadist group based in Pakistan, none of the defendants actually obtained weapons of mass destruction, according to the authorities. The men were, however, given an antiaircraft missile system that was incapable of being fired, as well as homemade bombs containing inert plastic explosives, as part of the undercover investigation, the authorities said.

According to the criminal complaint, Mr. Cromitie met the informer last June, and told the informer that his parents had lived in Afghanistan and that he was upset about the deaths of Muslims at the hands of United States military forces in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Mr. Cromitie expressed interest in returning to Afghanistan and said that if he were to die a martyr he would go to paradise, according to the complaint, which states that Mr. Cromitie threatened to do “something to America.”

It looks like entrapment – though it’s worth stressing that these nutjobs wanted to / did buy plastic explosives and guns to attack a synagogue too.


              Post to del.icio.us


Filed in: Terrorism






38 Comments below   |  

Reactions: Twitter, blogs
  1. pickles

    New blog post: 4 arrested in US terrorist plot http://www.pickledpolitics.com/archives/4608


  2. Mesothelioma Lawyer 4U

    South Carolina Mesothelioma Law firm handling Asbestos Claims throughout SC…

    Westminster Mesothelioma Lawyers – Westminster mesothelioma law firm with offices in South Carolina. Our Westminster mesothelioma Lawyer represent individuals and families affected by mesothelioma cancer in Westminster….


  3. Attorney in Newton offering legal service to those suffering from malignant mesothelioma

    [...] Pickled Politics ” 4 arrested in US terrorist plot [...]




  1. mk1 — on 21st May, 2009 at 6:17 am  

    Speaking of nutters attacking places of Worship –

    Kingsbury temple attacked again in ‘suspected Tamil revenge attack’

    6:05pm Monday 18th May 2009

    comment Comments (0) Have your say »
    By Tristan Kirk »

    A SERIES of attacks on a Buddhist temple in Kingsbury could be motivated by religious hatred, say police.

    Officers are linking two attacks in the space of five days on the Sri Saddhatissa International Buddhist Temple, when windows were smashed and a monk attacked.

    In the early hours of Sunday, a man wielding a copper pipe tried to hit the monk over the head, while a second man hurled a brick through one of the temple’s windows. The monk was uninjured.

    http://www.harrowtimes.co.uk/news/4377875.Buddhist_temple_hit_again_in__religious_hatred__attacks/#show

  2. Katy Newton — on 21st May, 2009 at 7:05 am  

    They did acquire weapons, it’s just that the weapons didn’t work because they were replaced with dummies. Entrapment is more than just an undercover officer or officers being involved.

    Entrapment basically involves an undercover officer persuading someone to do something they wouldn’t otherwise have done. It might have been entrapment if the informant had said in the middle of a meeting about generally not liking Jews, “Hey! Why don’t I get you some big weapons so that you can shoot down some military planes and destroy that synagogue?”. But it’s not entrapment if he’s sitting in the meeting, is asked to provide weapons for that purpose by the people involved in the conspiracy, and provides dummy weapons, and that’s what the full article indicates happened.

    Of course, the full details won’t come out until the case gets underway, but on what’s currently available I don’t think it looks like entrapment.

  3. marvin — on 21st May, 2009 at 8:08 am  

    It’s also worth noting, according to R4 this morning, they were *converts* to Islam (I’d guess African-American, they are often targeted)

    So criticisms of criticisms in this case cannot logically boil down to racism against Muslims, as it was clearly the *ideology* that was the motivating factor. They essentially ‘bought’ in to victim-aggressor mentality it would seem. And there’s plentiful supply of the victim narrative, isn’t there Picklers?

    Another point, their intention to blow up a synagogue. For these nouveau-extremists, it IS all about the Jews and the disgusting kaffir.

  4. Dani — on 21st May, 2009 at 8:21 am  

    Let’s see how this all enfolds.

    On a side note, marvin: could another word be used in place of “kaffir”? Although it does mean “heathen” in Arabic, it’s got another less savoury meaning. I know that nothing was meant by your usage, I just have a gut-reflex, having lived in Jo’burg for a time.

  5. platinum786 — on 21st May, 2009 at 8:35 am  

    Interesting to see the Jaish link, anything to involve Pakistan nowadays.

    According to the criminal complaint, Mr. Cromitie met the informer last June, and told the informer that his parents had lived in Afghanistan

    That would suggest he’s Afghan.

    It’s also worth noting, according to R4 this morning, they were *converts* to Islam (I’d guess African-American, they are often targeted)

    Here we have a suggestion they’re african american.

    Jaish agents tend to be Pakistani’s and tend to operate in Pakistan and India if they’re on a field trip. You never know they might have gone up in the world since the last time they carried out a terrorist attack.

  6. Random Guy — on 21st May, 2009 at 9:16 am  

    Regarding the degree of entrapment, the question to answer is how likely is it that the perpetrators could have assembled all the weapons and anti-aircraft system themselves? Otherwise, plots like this can be fabricated and rolled out in front of the media on a regular basis – the Intelligence Services are good at this sort of thing y’know.

    But lets just take the stance that this has not all been cooked for political expedience. Let us also ignore the thorny issue of why exactly these people are willing to undertake actions of this nature against the U.S. and (in effect) Israel.

    Without a doubt this kind of thing is unacceptable and any killing of innocent people would be a truly horrific and tragic event. It is also positive that they were not linked to any other terrorist group (as it says in the article). I am glad no harm came to anyone. I also think the ‘victim-aggressor’ mentality jargon that Marvin is using above is just a red-herring to deflect from the more worrying issues this poses to U.S. citizens in the longer term.

  7. chairwoman — on 21st May, 2009 at 9:29 am  

    Here we have a suggestion they’re african american.

    My best friend is staying with me for a few months, originally fro0m Barbados, she lived for many years in NYC.

    We watched them being arrested on the news this morning, and her first comment was ‘Great, my guys screw up again!’

    Make of this what you will.

  8. platinum786 — on 21st May, 2009 at 9:50 am  

    ^^^ Either your friend is a terrorist mastermind, or she had the same reaction that most people of ethnic minorities have when something stupid like this happens, “please don’t let it be one of ours”…

  9. Leon — on 21st May, 2009 at 9:57 am  

    Let’s see how this all enfolds.

    I think that’s the wisest comment possible at the moment on this.

  10. AJ — on 21st May, 2009 at 9:58 am  

    Security services have two choices when it comes to terrorists they are monitoring:

    1) Knowing that they are preparing an act of mass murder, arrest them before they do it, so technically they have done nothing and are likely to get a risible sentence and be back out on the streets in no time

    2) Prove beyond any reasonable doubt that they had every intention to kill, which is just what they have done with these 4 jokers.

    As comment #2 explains, this was not entrapment.

  11. chairwoman — on 21st May, 2009 at 10:01 am  

    Yeah, we all feel the same on that score!

  12. Imran Khan — on 21st May, 2009 at 10:52 am  

    This breaks down into two important issues.

    Who came up with the ideas? If its the FBI and their informant then its entrapment.

    However I woudl emphasise to all of you that even if the FBI came up with the idea then people don’t have to accept the idea. So if they agreed to go through with the idea and they weren’t forced then that is a clear and present danger.

    Now reading the news reports it appears the men came up with the idea and then were trying obtain the ability to carry out their plan.

    However the main issue is they appear to have wanted to do this and hence the issue of entrapment is a lesser issue.

    Most people don’t want to go and blow things up so people that do are a danger. These people were trying to buy equipment to kill civilians and regardless of who came up with the plot they could have said thats a foolish idea and walked away or proceeded. If they proceeded then they need to be apprehended and tried.

    If an FBI agent tells someone to rob a bank they don’t have to do it!

  13. chairwoman — on 21st May, 2009 at 11:01 am  

    If an FBI agent tells someone to rob a bank they don’t have to do it!

    When I did something foolish as a child and used ‘So-and-so told me to do it’ as my excuse, my mother’s response was ‘And would you put your hand in the fire if so-and-so told you to?’

    As I’m sure everybody’s mother gives them similar advice, it’s a shame that, if the FBI suggested the plot, the NYC miscreants didn’t heed it.

  14. sonia — on 21st May, 2009 at 11:57 am  

    good point Katy. Where would all undercover cop missions be otherwise??

    v. funny chairwoman! yeah, if the fbi tells you to rob a bank you don’t have to do it, if you don’t want to – unless you’re a dumb f**k or you were going to do it anyway!

  15. Refresh — on 21st May, 2009 at 12:01 pm  

    Without commenting on this specific case (i think we learnt a long ago not to believe all we read), there must have been a reason why the legal system allows entrapment as a defence.

  16. munir — on 21st May, 2009 at 12:07 pm  

    marvin
    “They essentially ‘bought’ in to victim-aggressor mentality it would seem. And there’s plentiful supply of the victim narrative, isn’t there Picklers?”

    Says the apologist for Israel!

  17. munir — on 21st May, 2009 at 12:13 pm  

    marvin
    “So criticisms of criticisms in this case cannot logically boil down to racism against Muslims, as it was clearly the *ideology* that was the motivating factor.”

    It wasnt religious ideaolgy – it was political- the desire to revenge the killing of Muslims by Americans

    “Another point, their intention to blow up a synagogue. For these nouveau-extremists, it IS all about the Jews and the disgusting kaffir.”

    Well again the Quran explicits forbids attacking the places of worship of others

    “…if God had not driven some people back by means of others, monasteries, churches, synagogues and mosques, where God’s name is mentioned much, would have been pulled down and destroyed. God will certainly help those who help Him-God is All-Strong, Almighty.” (Qur’an, 22:40)

    Note that the protection of monasteries, churches and synangogues is mentioned before the protection of mosques

  18. Shatterface — on 21st May, 2009 at 12:46 pm  

    I hope nobody ever offers me the means of killing innocent people for no good reason as the temptation to say ‘Yes, please’ must be hard to resist.

    Where the weapons shiny? Hard to turn down anything shiny.

  19. Sunny — on 21st May, 2009 at 1:09 pm  

    Good points Katy – I thought supplying someone with stuff despite being a mole was entrapment. I’ve changed the piece.

    Looks like they wanted to do damage, but just hadn’t managed to acquire the stuff.

  20. munir — on 21st May, 2009 at 1:12 pm  

    platinium 786
    “Either your friend is a terrorist mastermind, or she had the same reaction that most people of ethnic minorities have when something stupid like this happens, “please don’t let it be one of ours”…”

    Actually its a sign that a minority has been accpted or has some degree of equality that it no longer feels this when one of its number does something wrong.

    In the past if a Catholic or a Jew did something wrong they would feel this but not now. The acceptance comes largely from the majority community.If a Catholic or a Jew does something wrong no one would think to blame the whole community or even hold others responsible. Sadly this is still the case with the Muslim minority .

  21. chairwoman — on 21st May, 2009 at 1:59 pm  

    “In the past if a Catholic or a Jew did something wrong they would feel this but not now. The acceptance comes largely from the majority community.If a Catholic or a Jew does something wrong no one would think to blame the whole community or even hold others responsible. Sadly this is still the case with the Muslim minority .”

    Oh Munir, this is so not the case with Jews. When a Jews does something wrong, the newspapers can’t wait to let the world know that the ‘baddy’ is a Jew. Look for the hardly hidden code, ‘north London businessman’ is one to watch, along with ‘whose parents were Holocaust survivors’ or ‘whose grandfather emigrated here in the early 20th century to escape persecution ‘.
    All these mean Jew.

    You can imagine then how thrilled we were when Lord Levy was in the news daily in the Cash for Honours scandal. It wasn’t Tony Blair who could bestow the honours that was blamed, but the man who, allegedly, collected the cash on his behalf.

    When Michael Howard was leader of the Conservative Party, I didn’t know whether to be more frightened that a Conservative would get in or a Jew. Can you imagine the possibilities for the ‘Please don’t let it be one ours’ that that situation could open.

    But it was only a fleeting moment, I knew there was no possibility that my compatriots would vote a Jew in as Prime Minister.

  22. Refresh — on 21st May, 2009 at 2:23 pm  

    Good comment Chairwoman #21

    Never thought of North London businessman. How so? Is this well understood?

  23. chairwoman — on 21st May, 2009 at 2:45 pm  

    Because so many of us live in North and North west London, and it is inevitably the businessmen who make it into the newspapers.

    As far as I know it’s pretty well taken for granted.

  24. Sunny — on 22nd May, 2009 at 12:35 am  

    I didn’t know the north london businessman bit either.

  25. Random Guy — on 22nd May, 2009 at 8:02 am  

    Neither did I! o_O

  26. imran khan — on 22nd May, 2009 at 8:46 am  

    Chairwoman – “Oh Munir, this is so not the case with Jews. When a Jews does something wrong, the newspapers can’t wait to let the world know that the ‘baddy’ is a Jew. Look for the hardly hidden code, ‘north London businessman’ is one to watch, along with ‘whose parents were Holocaust survivors’ or ‘whose grandfather emigrated here in the early 20th century to escape persecution ‘.
    All these mean Jew.”

    You’ve forgotten than often in the cases of older North London Businessmen they’ll refer to earlier upbringing in East London or the East End.

    Usually they are also described as close confidents just to re-enforce the point!

    Michael Howard was described by Ann Widdicombe as “there is something of the night about him”.

  27. Ravi Naik — on 22nd May, 2009 at 9:18 am  

    Neither did I!

    Is there anything more futile than a random guy saying that in the middle of a conversation? :)

  28. Ravi Naik — on 22nd May, 2009 at 9:19 am  

    But it was only a fleeting moment, I knew there was no possibility that my compatriots would vote a Jew in as Prime Minister.

    Why, Chairwoman?

  29. chairwoman — on 22nd May, 2009 at 9:30 am  

    “You’ve forgotten than often in the cases of older North London Businessmen they’ll refer to earlier upbringing in East London or the East End.

    Usually they are also described as close confidents just to re-enforce the point!

    Michael Howard was described by Ann Widdicombe as “there is something of the night about him”.”

    Spot on Imran!

    Ravi, I think Imran summed it up perfectly with the Ann Widdicombe quotation. They think we’re ‘different’, our girls are ‘exotics’ our chaps ‘know people’ and we are, of course, incapable of being non-partisan.

  30. chairwoman — on 22nd May, 2009 at 9:32 am  

    “I didn’t know the north london businessman bit either.”

    I bet you’ll notice it now :)

  31. damon — on 22nd May, 2009 at 10:19 am  

    I’m not taking all this ”north London businessman” stuff at face falue as it’s being put here.
    Britain is not so anti-semitic as some people would like to make out.

    I’m a regular listener to Vanesssa Feltz’s BBC London radio programme. She’s proudly Jewish – and speaks openly of growing up in a north London Jewish houshold where her parents were in the textile (underwear) business. Yes she makes light of some Jewish stereotypes from her childhood and growing up in the north London suburbs, but does so with affection, and throws the occasional yiddish word into conversation.
    She has just won the Sony Radio Award for ‘Speech Radio Personality of the Year’.
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/culture/tvandradioblog/2009/may/12/vanessa-feltz-sony-award

    As for Ann Widdicombe saying of Michael Howard, ”there is something of the night about him” – how did anti-semitism crop up there?
    I thought it was a brilliantly funny obversation about there being something ‘dracula-esque’ about Howard.
    His smile I think. (And the way he pronounces certain words) I didn’t think for a moment it was anything to do with his Jewishness. I have a couple of Jewish inlaws. I hope they don’t live their lives thinking that people can’t get over their ”otherness”.
    I’ll have to ask my sister-in-law whether she thinks that the neighbours ”know”.

  32. chairwoman — on 22nd May, 2009 at 10:28 am  

    “Britain is not so anti-semitic as some people would like to make out.”

    Actually, yes it is. Or rather it has become so. certainly not when I was young.

    I live in the same North London Suburb that Vanessa grew up in, although I didn’t grow up in it. And my late mother, although somewhat older, knew Vanessa’s mother well.

    Sorry, Damon, things have changed, and within the last 10 years. Before then antisemitism was a very distant blip on my radar. Although people will say it’s the result of Israel’s actions, I would like to put it somewhat differently, Israel’s actions have allowed the indigenous British antisemites to voice their prejudices under the guise of antizionism.

    As for Ann Widdecombe, I hope the Welsh realise that she’s prejudiced against their accent.

  33. damon — on 22nd May, 2009 at 12:54 pm  

    It’s going a bit off topic here, but I just googled ”Ann Widdecombe welsh accent” and came up with this. I agree with Widdecombe. It’s not prejudice.
    http://www.express.co.uk/posts/view/89839/Let-s-not-find-racism-where-it-doesn-t-exist
    When I lived in Glasgow for a couple of years, it took me a while to ”tune in” to what people were saying sometimes. Sitting in a bar in the day time having a drink and reading the paper, you’d have an old fella (with few teeth) start up a conversation and be struggling to understand what he was saying.
    By the time I left Scotland I’d picked up a bit of a local inflection myself. You have to change the way you speak a bit or they might have difficulty with fast spoken ”estuary english”.

    As for prejudice against Jews. It might not be the place to discuss this (as it’s a whole subject in itself), and it’s complex.
    I hopefully have no prejudices about anyone.
    But that doesn’t mean that (for example) when passing through Trafalgar Square a couple of years ago and seeing a Jewish community event taking place (on a sunday I think) – and walking around it, I felt not entirely sympathetic with the event as a whole.
    It was during the last Lebanon war, and I read in my (free) Jewish Chronicle (as they had a stall there) some pretty pro-Israel (pro-war) opinions, and even some really unfunny ”jokes” about the BBC reporting of it.
    So then as I watched the very nice Israeli folk singers preform on the stage, I was slightly turned off the whole event.
    This could be seen by some as anti-semitism on my part.
    But if I was anti-semitic, then could I feel love for my brother’s children who have a Jewish mother?

    And being non-religious I find religious people (just a little) otherworldly. Particularly those who follow the Abrahamic faiths, as they seem the most bizarre to me. (How come people give such credence to books that come from the mists of time? If this is the way this god communicates to us, then this god might be deeply flawed and egotistical).

  34. chairwoman — on 23rd May, 2009 at 10:05 am  

    Damon – The Jewish Chronicle is a newspaper that covers all opinions within the Jewish Community, You will find plenty of articles and letters criticising Israel and its many political parties, and its politicians.

    Frankly I find not enjoying the singing because it was Israeli to be a little bizarre. The song is the song, and where it comes from should have no bearing on whether one enjoys it or not. I personally love Wagner, even though a lot of Jews no longer listen to it because of its Nazi associations. Also I am a great fan of Turkish, Arabic and Bengali food. As these are Islamacentric dishes, should that make me enjoy them less?

    Yes, we people of the book all have very weird books, with very weird rules indeed in them. In Judaism, only the Chasidic Jews take our book at face value. Less orthodox believe them to be allegorical, and Reform and Liberal Jews believe them to be a guideline for the times in which they were written, and that as we progress, so should the rules by which we live.

    For example, the law that forbids riding on Shabbat was obviously sensible for those times because it ensured that one’s beasts of burden had a day off, similarly the instruction to treat animals well, not only benefits the animal, but the owner of the animal.

    We have laws for everything even the minimum amount of times per week a man should have sex with his wife. The less physical his employment, the more performances in the bedroom, and vice-versa.

    As for loving your brother’s chiuldren, you love them because they are your brother’s children. I don’t love them (even though they are Halachically Jewish) because I am neither related to them nor know them.

    Now I’m off to enjoy the Samurai Su Doku! :)

  35. damon — on 23rd May, 2009 at 2:55 pm  

    The only reason I felt somewhat turned off at the event Chairwoman was that the bombs were dropping on Lebanon at the time, and there is that element of British Jewry that I don’t really care for. (The section that always backs Israel no matter what, and will turn out in central London for pro-Israel rallies).
    I felt that the Jewish community event that was taking place in Trafalgar Square that day probably had many of the same people who turn up for Pro – Israel demonstrations like this one in January this year.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zWG7P_2g-SQ
    That’s what put me off.

    That doesn’t mean I can’t like Mike Brant though:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BqXs4qYEhbs&feature=related

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Pickled Politics © Copyright 2005 - 2010. All rights reserved. Terms and conditions.
With the help of PHP and Wordpress.