FBI Blows It: Supposed Terror Plot Against NY Synagogues Is BogusState Department's definition of terrorism:
A scary terrorist plot is announced. Then it's revealed that the suspects are a hapless bunch of ne'er-do-wells or run-of-the-mill thugs without the slightest connection to any terrorists at all, never mind to Al Qaeda. Finally, the last piece of the puzzle: the entire plot is revealed to have been cooked up by a scummy government agent-provocateur.
I've seen this movie before.
The term "terrorism" means premeditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against noncombatant targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents, usually intended to influence an audience.Elements of their definition:
2. Politically motivated
4. Against noncombatants
5. By groups smaller than a government
6. Intended to influence an audience.
What the FBI did here meets all those components except #5 - they are more than a "subnational group."
Premeditated: Planned since 2002 when their "inside man" was busted for ... terrorism? No, identity theft. Started pitching his "plan" and recruiting for his "team" in 2007 at a Mosque.
Politically motivated: became informant months after 9/11 and FBI directed him toward a group of people who looked like the bombers and their success changes political outcomes, appears to be a victory in the "ongoing (i.e., we need more funding) war on terror."
Violence: incarceration is an act of violence apart from any additional injury suffered from being jailed.
Against noncombatants - these men were not part of a military unit or a "terror network" until the informant drew them into his own sham of a group. Even if this falls short of entrapment, it is still not a combat group as it is actually created by a government agent.
By groups smaller than a government - again, this component is not met.
Intended to influence an audience - tell me you don't think the "successful capture of homegrown terrorists" is not meant to influence the US population into changing our political and social activities, into supporting policies and groups and fighting against (or stopping support for) others (i.e., the ACLU, Democrats, etc).
So no, it's not terrorism, but why the hell are we up to something the falls so fucking close?