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US soldier charged with planning attack on his own unit members

A United States soldier has been charged with planning a terrorist attack on fellow soldiers of his unit by sending information to a neo-Nazi group. Ethan Melzer, 22 is a member of white supremacist group with whom he plotted to launch an attack on his own unit. Melzer is accused of sending sensitive data about his unit to the Order of the Nine Angles. The US Department of Justice describes the organization as an “occult-based neo-Nazi and racially motivated violent extremist group”.

The young soldier was allegedly planning to facilitate the jihadists by passing the sensitive details to them and then executing the attack through them. His plan was shattered last month by the FBI and the US army in a combine operation and he was arrested on June 10, 2020. Private Melzer has been charged with conspiring against and attempting the murder of US nationals, hatching a conspiracy and attempting to murder military service members, providing and attempting to provide material support to terrorists and conspiring to murder and maim in a foreign country. The soldier has been enrolled in the US army in Dec 2018 and started to serve as an active service member in June 2019.

“As alleged, Ethan Melzer, a private in the US Army, was the enemy within,” said Audrey Strauss, acting US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, in a statement.

“Melzer allegedly attempted to orchestrate a murderous ambush on his own unit by unlawfully revealing its location, strength, and armaments to a neo-Nazi, anarchist, white supremacist group.”

He is accused of planning to share sensitive details to jihadist terrorist groups, she added. He allegedly communicated regarding sending info about an anticipated deployment of his unit to an al-Qaeda member. Members of the O9A have openly admired Nazis such as Adolf Hitler and expressed their liking for jihadists leasers like OBL, the statement read.

“Melzer declared himself to be a traitor against the US, and describe his own conduct as tantamount to treason. We agree,” said FBI Assistant Director William F. Sweeney Jr.

“He turned his back on his country and his unit while aligning himself with members of the neo-Nazi group ONA. Today, he is in custody and facing a lifetime of service behind bars which is inappropriate given the severity of the conduct we allege today.”

UK anti-racism campaigners Hope Not Hate have published their annual State of Hate report to call for a ban on O9A group.