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Terrorism & Security

New York terror plotters wanted to 'do jihad'

Four men were arrested in New York Wednesday night after plotting to blow up two synagogues in the Bronx and shoot down military airplanes.

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The Telegraph reports that Mr. Cromitie was probably motivated by deep-rooted anti-Semitism. In the official criminal complaint, the British paper reports that he used several profane words to describe his hatred of Jews

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The group, which apparently showed sympathy toward Al Qaeda, said that the Sept. 11 attacks had already destroyed "the best target," the World Trade Center, so they decided to target the country's Jewish population. "They were filled with rage and wanted to take it out on what they considered the source of all problems in America – the Jews," one law-enforcement official told the New York Daily News.

Although the group had relatively advanced plans for their attacks, The New York Times City Room blog reports that they had little, if any, prior history with organized violence. Police describe the men as "petty criminals" who were working without any affiliation to larger terrorist organizations.

Mr. Cromitie, 53, had lived in Brooklyn and had a record of "as many as 27 arrests" for minor crimes "both upstate and in New York City," Mr. Kelly said. He, David Williams and Onta Williams are native-born United States citizens, while Mr. Payen is a native of Haiti. "We believe they knew each other from prison contacts, for the most part," Mr. Kelly said.
Mr. Cromitie was the oldest member of the group and its leader, while the others were "significantly younger," in their late 20s or early 30s, Mr. Kelly said.

The suspects apparently kept a low profile, not eliciting any suspicion from their neighbors, reports the New England Cable News Network. "Lives right over here with us. Regular dude," one of the suspects' neighbors told NECN.

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