South Carolina Congressman Joe Wilson told McClatchy newspapers on Friday that five Muslim soldiers who have been under investigation at Fort Jackson have been removed from active duty. This is yet another interesting development in what has become an increasingly head-scratching case with still unanswered questions.
CBN News first broke the news back on February 18th ((updates here, here and here) that an investigation of five Muslim soldiers in the Lima 09 translator program was underway at the South Carolina military post over food poisoning allegations. Here is what Rep. Wilson told McClatchy:
A South Carolina congressman said Friday that five Muslim soldiers at Fort Jackson, S.C., had been removed from active duty, and four of them discharged from the Army, in connection with an ongoing probe into alleged threats to poison food at the large South Carolina base.
Republican Rep. Joe Wilson, who sits on the House Armed Services Committee, said the soldiers' laptops had been seized and were being analyzed. Congressional officials with knowledge of the case said cell phones and Arabic writings had been confiscated as well.
Wilson said the soldiers were discharged because of unrelated incidents of minor theft.
In his first public comments on the case, Wilson said FBI forensics experts were working with the Army's Criminal Investigation Division in the probe.
"The initial investigation confirmed that (the five soldiers) had not made any effort to poison food and that allegations about their disloyalty were inaccurate," Wilson told McClatchy Newspapers. "There was further investigation. I have not received any word of it being over. I think they would tell me."
It's good news, obviously, that the men have apparently been cleared of making threats to poision food at Fort Jackson. But the fact that their laptops were seized and cell phones and Arabic writings confiscated raises eyebrows, to say the least.