U.S. President Barack Obama steps aboard Air Force one at Andrews Air Force Base near Washington
In a plot that seems lifted from the pages of a comic book, the FBI arrested two men accused of building an elaborate X-ray machine they planned to use to kill President Obama.
Glendon Scott Crawford, 49, from Galway, New York and Eric J. Feight, 54, of Hudson, New York are facing charges of conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists, namely through the use of a weapon of mass destruction, after the homemade X-ray machine was discovered, the Department of Justice announced.
According to authorities, the machine produced lethal amounts of radiation and would have been fully functional if the pair's alleged plot had been set into motion. Crawford called it"Hiroshima on a light switch," the FBI said. The men are accused of planning to hide the machine in a truck and detonate it remotely.
The men are also accused of targeting a Muslim organization. The men reportedly blamed Obama for the Boston Marathon attacks.
"He directed the [government] to start bringing [Muslims] here without background checks," Crawford wrote, according to the FBI. "They don't have to follow any laws, and this administration has done more to enable a government sponsored invasion than the press can cover up."
The FBI had been investigating Crawford, who they said was a member of the Ku Klux Klan. He is accused of asking a Klan leader to fund his plot, and entered a synagouge asking for help developing technology that could be used against the enemies of Israel. Through the assistance of undercover agents, Crawford and Feight successfully obtained equipment to build the X-ray machine, which would have emitted harmful doses of radiation undetected until days later.
"This case demonstrates how we must remain vigilant to detect and stop potential terrorists, who so often harbor hatred toward people they deem undesirable," United States Attorney Richard S. Hartunian said in a statement.
The announcement comes on the heels of the media frenzy surrounding the controversial tactics of the NSA in monitoring terrorism threats. Obama defended the NSA's tactics in Berlin Wednesday, saying the monitoring takes place to protect people and is done under the oversight of courts.
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