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WASHINGTON D.C.-A Massachusetts man was arrested by the FBI yesterday for allegedly plotting to blow up the U.S. Capitol and the Pentagon with remote control model airplanes. The arrest stems from information given to authorities by an informant.
The FBI acted on the information and contacted Rezwan Ferdaus, age 26, in an undercover operation. The FBI agents posed as Al Qaida members. During the operation, Ferdaus allegedly told agents that he had scoped out a site next to the Potomac River where he said it was possible to launch C-4 plastic explosive laden aircraft controlled by GPS and fly them over the Capitol.
During the operation against of Ferdaus, he had allegedly built components to be used in improvised explosive devices for use in Iraq. He was told by undercover agents that contacts there had used the components to successfully kill Americans in that country. According to the FBI, Ferdaus stated, ” That was exactly what I wanted.” In an FBI affidavit, Ferdaus told operatives, that he wanted “to kill the kafir [nonbeliever] armies and … as many people as possible.”
Ferdaus was arrested in Framingham Massachussetts after undercover agents supplied him with genades, a half a dozen machine guns and mock explosives. The arrest was made after the sting operation was shut down. Authorities say that the public was not in any danger during the operation.
Charges of trying to destroy a national defense facility and the Capitol and attempting to provide material support to Al Qaeda were leveled at Ferdaus when he appeared in court. FBI Agent Gary C. Cacace, the lead agent in the case, said in the federal court affidavit that Ferdaus sought jihad against the U.S. as early as last year, and considered Americans “enemies of Allah.” At one point, Ferdaus allegedly told the undercover workers that he was so driven, “I just can’t stop; there is no other choice for me.”
Also, during meetings, according to the FBI, he allegedly spoke of wanting to “decapitate” the U.S. government’s “military center” and to “severely disrupt … the head and heart of the snake.” His plans were to attack the Pentagon first, saying, “Once we hit the military, we can take care of the politicians.” He added “It would be nice to gun down some politicians.”
Ferdaus remains in custody and is expected to enter a plea of not guilty when he returns to court on Monday.