The downtown protest group Occupy Boston threw its proverbial doors open yesterday, and played host to supporters of accused terrorist Terak Mehanna, who are looking to raise awareness of the Sudbury man’s upcoming trial. The Tarek Mehanna Support Committee came to Occupy Boston’s ever-evolving tent city on the Rose Kennedy Greenway to say Mehanna, a Muslim American pharmacist, is a victim of anti-Muslim sentiment. Occupy Boston hosted the pro-Mehanna rally, but, officially, the leaderless group doesn’t have a position on the case.
Say, who is this innocent "victim of anti-Muslim sentiment," anyway?
A pharmacist living with his parents in the suburbs of Boston was arrested on Wednesday on federal terrorism charges. The authorities said he had conspired to attack civilians at a shopping mall, American soldiers abroad and two members of the executive branch of the federal government.
The man, Tarek Mehanna, 27, was charged with conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists. The conspiracy occurred from 2001 to 2008, the acting United States attorney, Michael K. Loucks, said at a news conference in Boston. Mr. Loucks said Mr. Mehanna, an American citizen, was unsuccessful in acquiring weapons to carry out the attack, and was also rejected by terrorist groups abroad. Mr. Loucks said Mr. Mehanna had conspired with others, including Ahmad Abousamra, who the authorities said fled to Syria in 2006, and an unnamed informant. He is had “multiple conversations” about an attack on the mall in the United States, Mr. Loucks said.
“The conversations went so far as to discuss the logistics of a mall attack, including coordination, weapons needed and the possibility of attacking emergency responders,” he said. But Mr. Loucks said the men could not obtain the automatic weapons they wanted for the plot, which he said was inspired by the 2002 sniper attacks in the Washington area. The authorities did not name the two members of the executive branch whom they said Mr. Mehanna and his associates had chosen as targets. The two are not now in office, Mr. Loucks said, and they were not in danger from the plot.
But wait, there's more!
At the time of his arrest on Wednesday, Mr. Mehanna was free on bail from an earlier arrest, in November 2008, at Logan International Airport in Boston, when he was charged with lying to federal investigators in a 2006 interview. Mr. Mehanna, prosecutors said, had sought to obtain automatic weapons from a friend, Daniel Maldonado, who was at the time a terrorism suspect. Mr. Maldonado is serving a 10-year prison sentence for training with Al Qaeda in Somalia. The complaint filed on Wednesday also states that Mr. Mehanna and his associates traveled to Pakistan, Iraq, Syria and Yemen, seeking training from terrorist groups to fight against American soldiers. But the groups rejected them.
This US citizen is innocent until proven guilty, of course, but it's not especially comforting that his "cause" has been given a platform by the Occupy Wall Street so-called "movement." This cretin has been indicted on multiple terrorism charges for allegedly plotting to murder Americans in shopping malls, butcher emergency responders, and assassinate US officials. Right on cue, some super-patriotic Leftists have gallantly rushed to his defense, shrieking about "Islamophobia." One of the most effective criticisms of these childish "occupy" protests is that they lack any real point, and have rapidly degenerated into typical, garden-variety Lefty grievance tantrums. The "Free Mehanna" vigil in Boston reinforces that perception. At least mainstream Democrats have been sensible enough not to embrace this mob. Oh, wait.
Big Journalism's Diggrbiii snarked earlier that you wouldn't witness open support for terrorists at a Tea Party rally. He's right, obviously, but I think he's missing an important point: The Tea Partiers are the terrorists, according to the Left.
Guy Benson is Townhall.com's Political Editor. Follow him on Twitter @guypbenson. He is co-authors with Mary Katharine Ham for their new book End of Discussion: How the Left's Outrage Industry Shuts Down Debate, Manipulates Voters, and Makes America Less Free (and Fun).
Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography