Christopher Lee Cornell, a converted Muslim who tweeted as Raheel Mahrus Ubaydah, was arrested by the FBI in January for plotting to attack the U.S. Capitol. Last week, he called a radio station from jail to explain his motive.
As reported by CNN in January:
Authorities say Cornell ... hatched a simple scheme. It was similar to the Paris attack on the offices of Charlie Hebdo, but at a key location — the U.S. Capitol, said a criminal complaint filed by an FBI agent.
The plan: Set off pipe bombs to put lawmakers and employees in panicked flight and then gun them down with an assault rifle as they ran across his path and that of an accomplice.
He had made preparations with a partner [who was actually an FBI informant]. He had researched bomb-making instructions and by Wednesday, Cornell had bought two M-15 rifles with 600 rounds of ammunition.
When they they found out Cornell had the weapons, authorities made their move before Cornell could make his.
Cornell called WXIN in Cincinnati last week to confirm his support for ISIS, and to explain his plan and motivation. In response to a question from the interviewer, Cornell explained:
“I would have put it [one of his guns] to Obama's head, I would have pulled the trigger, then I would unleash more bullets on the Senate and House of Representative members, and I would have attacked the Israeli embassy and various other buildings.”
He then explained the motivation behind his conversion to radical Islam and subsequently-planned attack:
"[T]he continued American aggression against our people and the fact that America, specifically President Obama, wants to wage war against Islamic State.
They might say I'm a terrorist, but you know we see American troops as terrorists as well, coming to our land, stealing our resources and killing our people, raping our women."
Cornell, who grew up in the Cincinnati area, said support for ISIS is widespread in America:
“We're here in Ohio. We're in every state. We're more organized than you think. There will be many, many attacks.”
Cornell was charged with attempted murder of government employees, solicitation to commit a crime of violence and various firearms-related offenses.
In late January, the would-be terrorist pleaded not guilty in federal court in Cincinnati, where he awaits trial.