Justice Department Charges U.S. Soldier with Planning Attack on Own Unit
On June 22, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York announced the unsealing of an indictment against one U.S. Army soldier with alleged ties to Order of the Nine Angles (“O9A”), a neo-Nazi white-supremacist anarchist group. The indictment centers on his alleged involvement in a planned attack against his own military unit.
The Justice Department charged Ethan Melzer on four counts, including conspiracy to murder U.S. military service members and provision of material support to terrorists, among other charges. Melzer enlisted in the U.S. Army in June of 2019 as a private. The criminal complaint alleges that Melzer confessed to divulging information about his unit’s movement and security and was “prepared to die to facilitate an attack on the Unit.”
Melzer allegedly revealed confidential information about his unit’s location and weaponry to co-conspirators in an O9A group message chain “in order to facilitate a mass casualty attack on the Unit,” in direct violation of his military oaths. Melzer allegedly conveyed this information with the intention of soliciting assistance from foreign terrorists to conduct a deadly ambush on his fellow service members once they were deployed to Turkey. The complaint details that O9A has expressed “Satanic, anarchist, neo-fascist, neo-Nazi, and anti-Semitic beliefs,” as well as support for Al-Qaeda.
The criminal complaint and the indictment can be found below: