March 28th, 2013
06:28 PM ET

Ex U.S. soldier charged with helping terrorists in Syria

A former U.S. soldier has been arrested and charged with illegally using a weapon of behalf of an al Qaeda-affiliated group in Syria.

Eric Harroun, 30, of Phoenix, Arizona, was arrested Tuesday night by the FBI at a hotel near Dulles Airport in Virginia. A justice official tells CNN that FBI agents questioned Harroun at the hotel, then took him into custody.

Harroun appeared Thursday in federal court in Alexandria, Virginia, and was charged in connection with his alleged use of a rocket-propelled grenade in Syria.

The law used to charge him states, "Any national of the United States who, without lawful authority, uses or threatens, attempts, or conspires to use a weapon of mass destruction outside of the U.S. shall be imprisoned for any term of years or for life, or if death results, may be punished by death."

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Filed under: Syria
soundoff (17 Responses)
  1. john smith

    America is the root of all terror. America has invaded sixty countries since world war 2.
    In 1953 America overthrow Iran's democratic government Mohammad Mosaddegh and installed a brutal dictator Shah. America helped Shah of Iran to establish secret police and killed thousands of Iranian people.
    During Iran-Iraq war evil America supported Suddam Hossain and killed millions of Iranian people. In 1989, America, is the only country ever, shot down Iran's civilian air plane, killing 290 people.
    In 2003,America invaded Iraq and killed 1,000,000+ innocent Iraqi people and 4,000,000+ Iraqi people were displaced.
    Now America is a failed state with huge debt. Its debt will be 22 trillion by 2015.

    March 31, 2013 at 10:46 pm | Reply
    • monsieurdl

      So what the revolutionaries did after the fall of the Shah is to be ignored? Are the actions of Iran during the Iran-Iraq war to be ignored? Are the stealing of elections for Ahmedinejad and the brutal treatment of protestors to be ignored? Come come, let Iran be accountable for their actions as well- don't blame just the USA.

      April 2, 2013 at 9:20 am | Reply
  2. Matt

    This is Harroun's his fault. He is a Muslim. He is killing in the name of Allah, Mohammed, Qran, Islam, and Jihad - That is what Muslims do. It's the fault of the US to allow Muslims in the armed forces. But, it wouldn't be the US fault when Harroun is locked up forever with no chance of parole.

    March 31, 2013 at 9:06 am | Reply
  3. Bangash

    Reportedly this guy was a part of US-Al-Qaida joint operation in Syria and this conviction is just to give the usual impression that Al-Qaida and USA are rivals. Al-Qaida is a main tool in US hand to terrorise the world and justify action against the targets in Muslim world. This evil drama has failed in Afghanistan despite huge cost and will fail elsewhere as well and main losers will be Americans as a nation while corporatocracy as a usual will be the only beneficiary.

    March 30, 2013 at 8:11 am | Reply
    • Matt

      @Bangash – You forgot to say – "Dirka, Dirka, Allah, Jihad". Come on, please say it now.

      March 31, 2013 at 8:59 am | Reply
    • Steve

      Nice summary. People are slowly realizing this.

      April 1, 2013 at 10:03 pm | Reply
  4. massoud

    I saw local news interview where this guys dad said he works for the C.I.A. I do not know if it's true, but maybe it is.

    March 29, 2013 at 3:43 pm | Reply
  5. SecretSquirrel

    Harroun, bradley manning is calling for you. He wants some company in front of the firing squad.

    March 29, 2013 at 1:37 pm | Reply
  6. mojacar

    strange that they prosecute this guy when they are providing funding and arms to the terrorists to overthrow the legit govt

    March 29, 2013 at 6:05 am | Reply
    • Danielito

      Dont know...but it all seems very staged. kinda like: "Look at the whiteboy fighting with us" kinda thing. Maybe thins is all staged to justify the drones in the sky looking in on even US citizens in the Homeland. I think that the govt has several sleeves beneath its shirtslevees here.

      March 30, 2013 at 10:48 am | Reply
  7. 1371usmc

    Allah really????? keep your fake profit to yourself. When has a rpg become a wmd!???

    March 29, 2013 at 12:29 am | Reply
    • BigShiz

      Christians should not disrespect muslims and muslims should not disrespect christians. I do agree with your second question. The problem is there is no legal definition to being a terrorist. Therefore they can call anyone a terrorist they want to.

      March 29, 2013 at 2:53 am | Reply
      • massoud

        I tried to post about freedom and liberty and CNN blocked my post. I did not know CNN does not like Americans who try and post about freedom and liberty.What a sad commentary that corporate controlled mainstream media CNN has stooped so low.

        March 29, 2013 at 10:00 pm |
  8. Happyguy

    A day of Reckoning is coming... The United States cannot keep persecuting the Muslim like they have done the Black Man, or The Chinese Man, or The American Indian. The US has slaughtered thousands of immigrants, slaves, and native peoples with no challenge to their methods or motivations. In the recent past, they have killed thousands of innocents in Iraq and Afghanistan in the name of Global Democracy (which translates to cheap oil) Peaceful Muslims and radicals are tired of the death of the innocents. If any other country committed such atrocities, the civilized world would rise up in one united voice and demand action. There would be sanctions, embargos, war tribunals and executions, but this is the United States, and they act with impunity because they are a “Super Power” and noboby dares challenge them. YET...
    Muhsin Khan
    And whoever kills a believer intentionally, his recompense is Hell to abide therein, and the Wrath and the Curse of Allah are upon him, and a great punishment is prepared for him.
    Surat Al-Baqarah
    for all violations is legal retribution. So whoever has assaulted you, then assault him ... the same way that he has assaulted you. And fear Allah ...

    March 28, 2013 at 7:26 pm | Reply
    • Matt

      Please do not single out the Americans. Muslims have terrorized people belonging to every single religion around the world. And everyone, not just America, is prepared to defend themselves. People of Myanmar are defending themselves against Muslim killers as we speak.

      March 31, 2013 at 10:28 am | Reply

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