An American soldier has been charged with terrorism for plotting an ambush against members of his own unit.
US Army Private Ethan Melzer allegedly sent sensitive intelligence on US troop deployments to a neo-Nazi organization called the Order of the Nine Angles, the US State Department announced yesterday. The information he provided included the location of the troops, their movement, and their security arrangement, and was allegedly meant to be passed on to Jihadist groups in conflict with US forces.
Melzer is charged with conspiring and attempting to murder US nationals, conspiring 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 plot was thwarted in late May, 2020, and Melzer was arrested on June 10.
Acting U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss said: “As alleged, Ethan Melzer, a private in the U.S. Army, was the enemy within. 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. Melzer allegedly provided this potentially deadly information intending that it be conveyed to jihadist terrorists. As alleged, Melzer was motivated by racism and hatred as he attempted to carry out this ultimate act of betrayal. Thanks to the efforts of the agents and detectives of the JTTF, our partners in the Departments of Defense and State, and the career prosecutors of this Office, a hate-fueled terrorist attack against American soldiers has been thwarted.”
Assistant Attorney General John C. Demers said: “As the indictment lays out, Ethan Meltzer plotted a deadly ambush on his fellow soldiers in the service of a diabolical cocktail of ideologies laced with hate and violence. Our women and men in uniform risk their lives for our country, but they should never face such peril at the hands of one of their own. The National Security Division is proud to support the efforts of those who disrupted this planned attack and to seek justice for these acts.”
FBI Assistant Director William F. Sweeney Jr. said: “Melzer declared himself to be a traitor against the United States, and described his own conduct as tantamount to treason. We agree. He turned his back on his county and his unit while aligning himself with members of the neo-Nazi group O9A. Today, he is in custody and facing a lifetime of service – behind bars – which is appropriate given the severity of the conduct we allege today.”
Melzer enlisted in the US Army in 2018 and joined the Order of the Nine Angles in 2019. Members of the organization have expressed neo-Nazi, anti-Semitic, and Satanic beliefs, as well as admiration for Adolf Hitler, Osama Bin Laden, and other Jihadists.