Timeline of events in Fort Dix jihad plot
Note how cannily Tatar tried to play both sides of the street, telling a Philadelphia Police Sergeant “that he had been approached by an individual who asked him to provide maps of Fort Dix and that he thought the incident was terrorist-related.” This was just to try to find out if that individual was an FBI informant (as indeed he was). Did the Sergeant (or his superiors) think that the Department had found a good moderate Muslim to work with?
“Timeline of events in Fort Dix attack plot,” from Newsday:
A timeline of events leading up to the arrest Monday night of six Islamic militants who allegedly planned to attack Fort Dix:_ Jan. 31, 2006: A shopkeeper alerted the FBI about a “disturbing” video he had been asked to copy onto a DVD. The video showed 10 young men in their early 20s shooting assault weapons at a firing range earlier that month. The group called for jihad (a holy war) and shouted in Arabic ‘Allah Akbar’ (God is great).
_ March: An FBI informant infiltrated the group by developing a relationship with Mohamad Shnewer.
_ May 26: Shnewer told the informant to look at particular DVD files on his laptop. One file contained what appeared to be the last will and testament of at least two of the hijackers involved in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks; another contained images of Osama bin Laden and other Islamic extremists calling on the viewer to join the jihadist movement.
_ July 7: A second informant was approached by six men, one of whom, later identified as Eljvir Duka, invited the informant to his home.
_ July 29: In a meeting recorded by the second informant, Shnewer showed several videos on his laptop computer that depicted armed attacks on U.S. military personnel.
_ Aug. 1, 2 and 5: Shnewer told the first informant that he, Serdar Tatar, Dritan Duka, Eljvir Duka, Shain Duka and others were planning to attack a U.S. military base, and Shnewer specifically named Fort Dix, explaining that they could kill at least 100 soldiers by using rocket-propelled grenades.
_ Aug. 5: Shnewer told the first informant they need to conduct surveillance of military bases to decide which one to attack.
_ Aug. 11: Shnewer and the first informant traveled to Fort Dix to conduct surveillance. During the trip, Shnewer told the informant the plan was to “hit four, five, six Humvees and light the whole place (up) and retreat completely without any losses.” The two also drove to Lakehurst Naval Air Station. Law enforcement officers also observed Shnewer drive by himself to Fort Monmouth later that day.
_ Nov. 12: Tatar told the first informant he would acquire a map of Fort Dix from his father’s restaurant and described an area of the post which they could attack and cause a power outage, making it easier to mount the attack on military personnel. At the end of the meeting, Tatar asked if the informant was a federal agent. (It was unclear how the informant responded.)
_ Nov. 15: In an attempt to find out if the informant was a federal agent, Tatar told a sergeant with the Philadelphia Police Department that he had been approached by an individual who asked him to provide maps of Fort Dix and that he thought the incident was terrorist-related.
_ Nov. 28: Tatar told the first informant that he would provide a map of Fort Dix even though it could lead to his being deported. He expressed his continuing suspicions about the informant, saying, “I’m gonna do it. Whether you are or not (FBI), I’m gonna do it. Know why? … It doesn’t matter to me, whether I get locked up, arrested, or get taken away, it doesn’t matter. Or I die, doesn’t matter, I’m doing it in the name of Allah.” Later that evening, Tatar left a map of Fort Dix in an area near the informant’s residence.
_ Dec. 8: Shnewer told the first informant that the group had missed an opportunity to attack military personnel at the Army-Navy football game in Philadelphia the previous weekend….
Fort Dix jihadists had video of bin Laden calling people “to join the jihadist movement”
Fort Dix Jihad Update. “Document links Fort Dix suspects to radical terrorism,” from Gannett News Service:
WASHINGTON – The plot to attack Fort Dix in south central New Jersey began to unravel on Jan. 31, 2006, when a retail store employee called the FBI about a “disturbing” video a customer had dropped off to be converted into a DVD.The video showed 10 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 … God is Great,'” according to a 27-page federal criminal complaint the U.S. Department of Justice released Tuesday.
Six of the 10 men identified in that video were arrested on charges of trying to attack Fort Dix, an installation whose layout one of the men – Serdar Tatar – purportedly knew “like the palm of his hand,” according to an affidavit submitted by FBI Special Agent John J. Ryan.
And no doubt no one would have dared to ask him what he thought of jihad and Islamic supremacism before letting him roam free around Fort Dix. To have done so would have been “Islamophobic.”
Left unexplained was why only six of the 10 were arrested and whether more arrests were forthcoming. The employee who alerted the FBI wasn’t identified; the store’s name wasn’t disclosed.The complaint said Tatar and five other men arrested – Dritan Duka, Mohamad Ibrahim Shnewer, Eljvir Duka, Shain Duka and Agron Abdullahu – amassed firearms, sought illegal Russian-made AK-47 assault rifles, viewed terrorist-training videos on their computers and trained in Pennsylvania’s Pocono Mountains.
One of the videos appeared to be the “last will and testament” of two of the Sept. 11, 2001, hijackers, and another contained “images of Osama bin Laden and other Islamic extremists making various speeches in which the speakers call the viewer to join the jihadist movement,” according to the complaint. Jihad is an Arabic word that means holy war.
Dritan Duka, Eljvir Duka and Shain Duka are illegal aliens, according to the complaint.
The jihadists who couldn’t shoot straight
Another Fort Dix Jihad Update. “Terror suspects were ‘bad shots,’ says local marksman,” from the Pocono Record:
Suspicious activity at a public shooting range in Monroe County led an official from the state game commission to tip authorities on what turned out to be an alleged terror plot to attack Fort Dix in New Jersey.”(The men arrested Monday) allegedly used our rifle range in the Gouldsboro area to train in some tactics,” said Tim Conway of the game commission in a phone interview at 12:20 p.m. today. “We did recognize a few things awhile back and reported that to the appropriate authorities.”
Randy Swiden of Blakeslee, a regular at the shooting range near Gouldsboro, said he remembers three to five guys shooting AK-47s there last fall. Swiden was interviewed at the range this morning.
Swiden said he heard the guys speaking in what sounded like Russian to each other and in broken English with a Russian accent to others. The six suspects arrested are nationals of the former Yugoslavia….
Swiden, 59, said he remembers the guys were shooting with 20-round clips rather than the typical three-round clips. He described them as “bad shots.”
They were shooting at 50-yard targets, packs of paper plates and milk jugs, and were missing.
Between them they had three AK-47s, Swiden said.
Storekeeper Tipped Feds to Jihad Video
Fort Dix Jihad Update. Watch for Omar Mohammedi and CAIR to get a suit going against this man forthwith. From AP:
CAMDEN, N.J. (AP) – May 8, 2007 – Officials say a shopkeeper alerted the FBI to a plot to attack soldiers at Fort Dix.According to the complaint, he told the FBI about a “disturbing” video he had been asked to copy onto a DVD.
The complaint says the video showed ten men in their early 20s “shooting assault weapons at a firing range … while calling for jihad and shouting in Arabic “God is Great.”
More on the Fort Dix jihad plot
Four of the jihadist plotters were Kosovar Albanians.
Michelle Malkin has details: “Terrorist plot in Cherry Hill, NJ; illegal aliens among alleged plotters; a John Doe turned them in; press conference at 2:30pm Eastern; Fort Dix has been a refuge for ethnic Albanians; update: details from the complaint.”
FBI Arrests 6 In Alleged Terror Plot Against N.J. Soldiers
From WNBC, NewsChannel 4, New York:
Six men from New Jersey have been arrested in an alleged terror plot against soldiers at Fort Dix, according to law enforcement sources.Investigators said the men planned to use automatic rifles to enter Fort Dix and kill as many soldiers as they could at the New Jersey military base. Fort Dix was just one of several military and security locations allegedly scouted by this group, authorities said.
Investigators told NewsChannel 4’s Jonathan Dienst that these arrests are the result of a tip to the FBI and use of an informant to track the suspects. Authorities were alerted in January 2006 after the terror suspects traveled to the Poconos for a training exercise where they practiced firing weapons, investigators said.
Sources have told NewsChannel 4’s Brian Thompson that the suspects tried to have a training videotape converted to DVD at a store in Cherry Hill, N.J., but the store owner alerted authorities.
Authorities then inserted a cooperating witness into the alleged terror cell to be a go-between in their attempt to purchase M16 and AK-47 rifles. Arrests were made Monday night after the informant delivered dummy weapons paid for by the alleged terror cell suspects, authorities said.
Investigators said the group discussed targeting numerous locations like Dover Air base, Fort Monmouth, a Coast Guard building in Philadelphia, and the Philadelphia Federal building before deciding on Fort Dix as their intended target. Fort Dix is run in part by the Army and is a reserve-training center, but active units take part in training, including some which focuses on counter-terrorism.
Sources told NewsChannel 4’s Brian Thompson that the family of one of the suspects owns a pizzeria near Fort Dix and claimed to know the base “like the back of his hand.” The same suspect told the alleged terror group it would be easy to penetrate to “get the most soldiers killed,” sources said.
Investigators said the group of suspects have been discussing and planning for much of the last year. They allegedly pooled their savings to pay for the operation targeted at soldiers stationed here at home, according to investigators.
The six suspects arrested Monday night will face terror conspiracy charges. Three of the men are brothers, all believed to be Islamic radicals.
The U.S. Attorney’s office has told NewsChannel 4 that one of the suspects was born in Jordan, one in Turkey and four in the former Yugoslavia. Investigators said most of the suspects have spent several years here in the United States.
Some of the group’s alleged planning was caught on videotape, investigators said. On the videotape there is significant discussion of martyrdom.
“Who is going to take care of my wife and kids?” one suspect asks on the tape, according to investigators. Another responds, “Allah will take care of your wife and kids.”
The alleged terror cell is described by investigators as disciples of Osama Bin Laden. Among the evidence seized was the downloaded will and testament of two Sept. 11 hijackers.
Spokesmen for U.S. Attorney Chris Christie and the FBI in New Jersey and Philadelphia could not be reached for a comment.
The suspects will be arraigned this afternoon in front of a federal magistrate at 1 p.m.
It was good of WNBC to mention the Islamic nature of the plot. One expects other news sources may overlook that fact.