By Altmuslim Editors
Three members of a militia group, who call themselves “The Crusaders” have been arrested and charged with domestic terrorism for plotting a bombing of a mosque and housing complex (where a large number of Somali Muslim refugees live and worship) in Garden City, Kansas.
U.S. Attorney Tom Beall said in a news conference Friday that The Crusaders had stockpiled weapons and materials for bomb-making and other explosive components and were considering a number of other targets, “including public figures who showed support for the local Somali population,” according to this Mic article. The investigation that led to foiling the plot went on for eight months, taking the investigators “into a deep culture of hatred and violence.”
The three men arrested are Curtin Wayne Allen, Patrick Eugene Stein and Gavin Wayne Wright. They had planned their bombing for the day after the election voting in November. The three refer to themselves as “militia,” and many media outlets have been identifying them as “right-wing militia members,” but many (Muslim and those not Muslim) are arguing to use the correct terminology: Terrorist.
Linda Sarsour, executive director at the Arab American Association of New York and co-founder/CEO of MPower Change, said:
Three white terrorists who call themselves “Crusaders” were arrested and charged today with domestic terrorism for allegedly plotting to blow up a housing complex with over 120 Somali Muslim refugees and a mosque in Garden City, Kansas. They have been planning it for months and wanted to execute it the day after the elections.
This is absolutely horrific and I hope we see the same outrage over these men as we do when alleged terrorists are Muslims.
Refugees come here fleeing war, murder and persecution just to be met with terrorism in the land of the free. We as Muslims DESERVE to live in safety and with dignity.
Absolutely horrified and outraged.
As of this morning, this news story is the main story on CNN.com and on other news outlets, while avoiding calling the men terrorists. According to this CNN article:
Curtis Allen and Gavin Wright, both 49, of Liberal, Kansas, and Patrick Eugene Stein, 47, of Wright, Kansas, were charged with conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction.A confidential source attended meetings of The Crusaders and told the FBI about the men’s plans, the DOJ said.Stein met with an undercover FBI employee Oct. 12 and test-fired automatic weapons, the DOJ said. Stein took the source to the apartment building the men allegedly planned to bomb and said he would provide ammonium nitrate for the bomb and contribute $200 to $300 for other materials, the DOJ said.Stein also mentioned that Allen had been arrested in a domestic violence case, causing Stein to worry Allen’s girlfriend would talk to police about their plans, the DOJ said.
Where are all the “good” white people who are going to condemn the extremists in their communities? I’ll wait. #KansasPlot
— Donna Auston (@TinyMuslimah) October 14, 2016
On taking the media to task for not calling the men terrorists:
— Dr. Craig Considine (@CraigCons) October 15, 2016
With less than a month to go before the election voting in November, many around the country are on edge as reports of attacks against Muslims and other ethnic groups continue to rise. The Council on American-Islamic Relations report that 2016 is on track to be the second-worst year on record in regards to mosque attacks in the United States, just behind the 78 mosques that were attacked in 2015.