A 26-year-old Massachusetts man was busted yesterday in a bizarre plot to attack the Pentagon and US Capitol with remote-controlled model planes packed with explosives.
Rezwan Ferdaus, a US citizen, was radicalised by watching jihadist websites and planned to kill "enemies of Allah" in an elaborate plot hatched a year ago, according to the Justice Department.
Nabbed: Rezwan Ferdaus wanted to blow up the Capitol to 'smithereens'
In a conversation with a federal informant, Ferdaus allegedly explained how in ancient times, God uses natural disasters to punish evil civilisations, and he would use them today. "For us, we've gotta do that," he said, according to the affidavit. "Allah has given us the privilege... he punishes them by our hand. We're the ones."
But the collaborators he thought were al-Qaeda recruiters turned out to be undercover FBI agents and they arrested him yesterday after he took possession of his arsenal -- including grenades, six AK-47 assault rifles and what he believed were 25 pounds of C-4 explosives.
Ferdaus, a graduate of Northeastern University with a degree in physics, began talking last December with an ex-con about attacking the Pentagon with small "drone airplanes" to "decapitate" the military. The ex-con, who was working with undercover agents recorded numerous talks in which Ferdaus elaborated on his plan, which also involved blowing the dome of the Capitol "to smithereens." He planned to launch the model planes from near the Jefferson Memorial, and at one time set July 5, during the Independence Day weekend, as the date.
Ferdaus also bought cellphones, removed the back covers and soldered wires to each phone in order to turn them into an electrical switch for improvised explosive devices to be used in Iraq.