ATLANTA – Two men already accused of discussing terror targets with Islamic extremists were indicted Wednesday on charges of undergoing paramilitary training in northwest Georgia and plotting a “violent jihad” against civilian and government targets, including an air base in suburban Atlanta.
It is encouraging to note the forthright description of these men’s activities as “jihad.”
The new indictment accuses Syed Ahmed, a 21-year-old Georgia Tech student who was arrested in March, and Ehsanul Islam Sadequee, 19, of traveling to Washington to film possible targets, including the U.S. Capitol and the headquarters of the World Bank, and sharing the recordings with another alleged terrorist based in Great Britain.
Both men are U.S. citizens who grew up in Atlanta area. They previously were accused of traveling to Canada last year to meet with Islamic extremists to discuss “strategic locations in the United States suitable for a terrorist strike,” including military bases and oil refineries, according to prosecutors.
Ahmed was born in Pakistan; Sadequee was born in Virginia and is of Bangladeshi descent. The new indictment says their motivation for planning attacks was “defense of Muslims or retaliation for acts committed against Muslims.”
The indictment alleges that the two men received paramilitary training at an undisclosed location in northwest Georgia in late 2004 and early 2005, and discussed plans for various attacks, including one at Dobbins Air Reserve Base in the Atlanta suburb of Marietta.
Ahmed also is accused of traveling to Pakistan in an unsuccessful attempt to train with Lashkar-e-Tayyaba, or Army of the Righteous, an Islamic extremist group that has been active in India for several years. Two U.S. officials have said last week’s train bombings in Bombay matched the methods the group has previously used.