18 Jan 2019
FBI arrests Jihadist planning White House attack with anti-tank rocket
Byung Pak, the US attorney for the Northern District of Georgia, announced the arrest of Hasher Taheb of Cumming, Georgia late Wednesday after a month-long FBI investigation.
Here's what happened.
Taheb arrested after FBI received tip from local community
The FBI investigation was sparked when they got a tip from the local community "that Taheb had become radicalized".
According to the indictment, Taheb tried to recruit an informant and an undercover FBI agent into a plan to attack the White House and other targets in Washington, including the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial, and an unnamed synagogue.
He wanted to become 'martyr' by conducting the attack
Wanting to fulfill his "duty" to conduct jihad and expecting to become a "martyr," Taheb originally hoped to travel to Islamic State-held territory in the Middle East, he told the FBI source, the indictment said.
But because he had lost his passport, Taheb told the informant it'd be better to launch attacks inside the United States.
He met the undercover agent last December.
Taheb asked undercover FBI agent to assemble all weapons
At the meeting with the agent, Taheb revealed a hand-drawn diagram of the White House West Wing, where the president's office is located.
In the subsequent weeks, he detailed what weapons he wanted to acquire for the plot, and assigned the FBI agent to obtain semi-automatic weapons, grenades, and an AT-4 shoulder-mounted anti-tank weapon.
Taheb's plan was for the trio to jointly launch attack.
Taheb believed 'jihad was the best deed in Islam'
Taheb referred to the attack as "game day," eventually pinpointed as January 17.
"Specifically, he described his plan to use the AT-4 to blow a hole in the White House so that the group could enter," the indictment said.
Taheb advised the source "that jihad was the best deed in Islam and the peak of Islam," the indictment further added.