Guilty Plea in Plot to Fly Remote Plane into Pentagon
Rezwan Ferdaus, planner of one of 12 terrorist plots against the US military by people apparently motivated by their Islamic faith, pleaded guilty to plotting to blow up the Pentagon by flying a remote controlled airplane into it laden with explosives.
Under a plea agreement, federal prosecutors agreed to drop four other charges. Prosecutors and Ferdaus’ lawyers also agreed to jointly recommend a 17-year prison term…
Siegmann said there were two main parts of his plan: to blow up the Pentagon and U.S. Capitol using remote-controlled planes and to kill American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan using improvised explosive devices detonated by modified cellphones.
The planes, measuring 60 to 80 inches in length and capable of speeds greater than 100 mph, would be guided by GPS and packed with 5 pounds each of plastic explosives.
Ferdaus was even told his devices had successfully been used to kill Americans in Iraq — and he was happy:
After giving the first device to the undercover agents, the agents lied and told him it had been used in Iraq and killed three U.S. soldiers.
Siegmann said Ferdaus was “visibly excited” to learn his device had been used successfully and said, “That was exactly what I wanted.”
Ferdaus’ plot is one of 12 attempted or successful attacks on the US military by those apparently motivated by their Islamic faith, four of whom were actually members of the US military:
- Fort Hood attack thwarted, PFC Abdo convicted (2011)
- Shots fired at Pentagon, other military bldgs (Marine Reservist Yonathan Melaku, 2010)
- Fort Hood massacre kills 14 (Army Maj Hasan, 2009)
- Fragging in Kuwait by Army Sgt Hasan Akbar (2003) (death sentence on appeal)
- Pipe bomb attack thwarted (Jose Pimentel, 2011)
- Remote control airplane Pentagon attack thwarted (Rezwan Ferdaus convicted, 2011)
- Seattle recruiting station attack thwarted (2011)
- Frankfurt airport attack kills 2 US Airmen (Arid Uka, 2011, life sentence)
- Baltimore recruiting center bomb thwarted (Antonio Martinez, 2010, 25-year sentence)
- Quantico attack by Raleigh jihadists thwarted (6 multi-decade prison sentences, 2009)
- Arkansas recruiting station attack by Abdulhakim Muhammad (2009, life without parole)
- Fort Dix attack thwarted (2007) (6 convictions, 4 life sentences)