Saturday, May 12, 2007

Fort Dix 'Terror Plot' Looks Like Another Case Of Entrapment

He railed against the United States, helped scout out military installations for attack, offered to introduce his comrades to an arms dealer and gave the comrades a list of weapons he could procure, including machine guns and rocket-propelled grenades.

These were not the actions of a terrorist, but of a paid FBI informant, one of two who helped bring down an alleged plot by six Muslim men to massacre U.S. soldiers at New Jersey's Fort Dix.
Thus writes the AP's Geoff Mulvihill in an article which appeared in Friday's Seattle Times, headlined "Fort Dix informants' actions examined".

Mulvihill reports that the actions of the two informants
have raised questions of whether the government crossed the line and pushed the six men down a path they would not otherwise have followed.
He also notes:
Entrapment is an argument that has been made in other terrorism cases, and one that has failed miserably in the post-Sept. 11 era.
We have already seen more than enough evidence to corroborate Mulvihill's assertion.

In fact, we have seen that entrapment as a defense in terror-related cases is basically worthless, and the reason is not hard to find: entrapment has become the FBI's chief weapon in the phony war.

The suspects' attorneys are trying to decide what to do about it.
One defense attorney on the case, Troy Archie, said no decision has been made on whether to argue entrapment, but based on the FBI's account, "the guys sort of led them on."

Rocco Cipparone, a lawyer for another defendant, said he will take a hard look at "the role of paid informants and how aggressive they were in potentially prodding or moving things along."
As usual in terror-entrapment cases, the authorities portray the suspects as competent and driven and their "plot" as almost ready to be unleashed, but even their own evidence disputes their contentions. In this case:
Prosecutors portrayed the six men — Serdar Tatar, 23; Agron Abdullahu, 24; Mohamad Ibrahim Shnewer, 22; Dritan "Anthony" or "Tony" Duka, 28; Shain Duka, 26; and Eljvir "Elvis" Duka, 23 — as driven by hatred of the United States, a description disputed by relatives and acquaintances.

"I never in my wildest dreams imagined what they've been accused of," said Ismail Badat, trustee of the Islamic Center of South Jersey in Palmyra, where the Duka brothers worshipped.

The same documents that prosecutors used to build a case against the suspects also depict them as somewhat disorganized, lackluster plotters. Clumsy and amateurish, too: The FBI learned of the alleged plot when the men went to a Circuit City store and asked a clerk to transfer a jihad training video of themselves onto a DVD.
So much for "mission security". So much for "competence".

The still-emerging details are all strikingly familiar.

Once again, the suspects had no access to weapons other than through an FBI informant posing as a weapons dealer.

And once again, the "plot" was ludicrous on its face, as we're supposed to believe that a handful of amateurs, with no combat experience and no independent access to weapons, could mount a successful assault on an Army base.

But the suspects are being held without bail, so now there's nothing to worry about -- at least not for the Army.

But for law-abiding Muslims in the area, it's yet another cause for worry, because in addition to entrapment, the FBI also likes a good round-up. As 1010WINS remembers,
Hundreds of Muslim men from New Jersey were rounded up and detained in the months after the Sept. 11 attacks, but none were connected to that plot.