White Supremacist Extremists Threaten America

The unsettling news was dropped into my email box as I was writing a note to a friend about Mank, a recent Hollywood production aimed at recreating the magic of movie-making from decades ago. What I read in my email was no fictitious account of film-making magic for the big-screen. Rather, the news was simply a reminder of the dangerous times in which we live.

The Department of Homeland Security had just issued a threat bulletin, the email read, due to the potential for violence from extremists that object to the presidential transition, hold anti-government views, or are motivated by other false narratives. Only minutes earlier I had read a fast post on Facebook from someone who opined that “I think we need to bring back School House Rocks. Too many adults forget their history lessons.” I responded, “Or never learned them!”

There is no doubt that in our nation there exists a segment–and even a sizable segment–that is tethered to their conservative mindset, though unable to articulate it or define how it meshes with our pluralistic society. White people who feel they somehow have been treated shabbily and their culture undermined. They feel no way to compete in a world of diverse ideas and social realignments. They continually see college-educated people running workplaces and governing in urban centers where fewer ‘look’ and ‘act’ like they do at the local tavern and bowling alley.

Many have argued, and some even somewhat convincingly, that the cause of the white angst is rooted in economics. I would agree up to the point that economics is central to having solid educational opportunities, which clearly a large segment of the ones who act with violence against the government do not have. But at the heart of the white resentments is racism. From marching out in the open at the deadly “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville in 2017 to calling for the overthrow of the government at the “Stop the Steal” rallies there is a link to white supremacy which can not, and must not be avoided when it comes to understanding who makes up this larger group.

The attack on the Capitol was yet another chapter in this ugly history. It was a literal who’s who of modern right-wing extremism. Analysts from ADL’s Center on Extremism noted in the crowds Wednesday members of the Oath Keepers, an anti-government armed militia group. White supremacist and Groyper Army leader Nick Fuentes was present and joined fellow “America First” adherents in chants of “Christ is King!” Nearby, members of the white supremacist New Jersey European Heritage Association waved their group’s flag. Various individuals carried banners of Kekistan, a fictional country invented by right-wing enthusiasts on 4Chan, or the stars and bars of the Confederacy.

This blog has continuously denounced the race-baiting politics that took place since Donald Trump took an escalator down to a microphone where he uttered racial animus while announcing his bid for president. (That was one of the few sentences on my blog where his name and the word president appear together.) The fact that a White House was the source for racial sentiments expressed with a bullhorn, and then also used as a venue to spread absolutely false notions about the recent election has spurred those with too little education or moral grounding to now threaten insurrection.

We only need to put recent events into a quick context to grasp the level of racism that is at work. By now we are all aware of the terrorist who stole House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s laptop. Riley June Williams, the 22-year-old woman planned to sell it to Russia. We are also aware that this criminal has been released on her mom’s assurance that she will be good from here forward.

We know precisely what the result of such a national strike at our government would look like if it were a Black person who wanted to strike a deal with a Russian agent for the Speaker’s computer! First off, there would be the million-dollar bail.

The people who stormed the seat of our national government, who now have created enough leads on social media threads and dark channels to make today’s bulletin necessary from DHS, must not be viewed as just errant members of society. They have been schooled for years within the echo chamber of mental rot, conservative talk-radio to Fox News at night, where messages that whites are being undermined by diversity and ‘cultural elites’ are pushed and then repeated ad-nauseam . How should we interpret the ‘war on Christianity’ other than the outcome of a continuous false narrative aimed to arouse the lowest educated in the land? The same tools of persuasion among this segment of the nation are used for racial stoking, too.

Our nation is all too well aware of the horrors from the Ku Klux Klan and their kindred cousins. We have often termed them as our nation’s original terrorists. Over the past years, we have plenty of proof to see those remnants of that most of un-American scourges is finding new ways to again make headlines. Too many in the Republican Party simply will not speak out about this racism as they do not wish to offend the racists in their own base.

Chicken or the egg argument all over again!

And so it goes.

Why We Need To Monitor Marine Le Pen And Her Front National In 2014

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When it comes to making a list of crazy men in politics, even potentially dangerous ones, I have long placed the name of Jean-Marie Le Pen near the top of the list.  He is a right-wing thug who has tried to warp French politics, and in so doing made him totally unacceptable to all but the ones housed in hospitals.  He called the concentration camps in WWII “a  detail” and has lashed out at anyone who does not have the same skin color as he does, or the same sense of morals.

But that is where his daughter Marine Le Pen comes into the equation.,  She is trying to turn his anti-Semitic, anti-immigrant, fascist party into something that resembles a credible alternative to the mainstream political parties.  With a boldness she predicts that she will be in the Elysée within a decade.

There is a need to hold her brash style and political rants up to the light of day and watch her as she works to get people elected in municipal elections throughout France.

For those of us who read and study history it comes as no surprise we are concerned when xenophobia, racism and intolerance are used as the foundations for a political movement anywhere in the world, let alone in Europe.  But that is exactly what Marine Le Pen promotes.  That she comes with blond hair and the everyday look as a divorced mother of teenagers makes her seem a sharp contrast to the thug of a father who has been accused and convicted several times at home and abroad of xenophobia and anti-Semitism.

But the fruit has not fallen very far from the tree when it comes to Le Pen and voters in France along with international viewers need to keep an eye on Front National.   History shows what can happen when we do not keep an eye on those who use their fears and biases as a basis for national political platforms.

It is harder to use the pages of history as an example to younger generations as to why they need to be wary of the likes of Le Pen.  That is true for too many young people worldwide.  But there is no end of reasons why mainstream politicians and voters in France must not allow the angry ones from the Front National to make any inroads with their gutter-like populist right-wing rot.

Israel Uses Archaeology In City Of David To Undermine Palestinians

If you missed the segment on “60 Minutes” this past Sunday concerning  the political uses of archaeology in Israel to undermine Palestinians then you need to watch it here.   “City Of David” was well done and deserves more attention.

Those who follow the news understand fully that Israel continues the practice of subverting international calls for peace with Palestinians.   Israel builds  homes on Arab land, and this is something that demands a smack down.  In this news segment on CBS Lesley Stahl reports from under the city of Jerusalem on a controversial archeological dig that has become a flash point in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. There is no way to justify the actions of Israel when it comes to these policies. 

The arrogant mayor of Jerusalem should be happy Stahl did not laugh out loud at his remarks.  They are just plain laughable.

FBI Agent Went Undercover As Teabagger To Nab Charles Wilson

Sometime you need to get in the gutter to catch the varmit.

As the F.B.I. moved in on a man who allegedly threatened Senator Patty Murray, Democrat of Washington, because of her support for health care legislation, law enforcement agents faced a challenge: they needed to confirm that Charles A. Wilson, the man whose phone number was used to leave menacing messages on her office voicemail, was in fact the man who made the threats.

So they found a convenient way to get Mr. Wilson talking about the issue that seemed to be weighing so heavily on him. Special Agent Cory Cote of the F.B.I. called Mr. Wilson at his home number and, according to the criminal complaint (PDF), “disguised himself as a representative of Patients United Now, a group that was ostensibly attempting to have the federal health care reform legislation repealed.”

As the call began, the suspect, Mr. Wilson, confirmed his identity for the undercover F.B.I. agent.

And according to the complaint charging him with threatening a public official, Mr. Wilson quickly supplied confirmation that he had made the threats against Senator Murray.

“Wilson made several statements that further confirm he was the caller on the voicemail messages,” the complaint said.

(a) Wilson repeatedly expressed his strong dislike for the recent health-care reform legislation (i.e. “I hate it. I hate it!”) (b) Wilson confirmed that he regularly placed calls to Senator Murray’s and Senator Maria Cantwell’s offices. (i.e., “I call Murray every day. I call Cantwell. They don’t like hearing from me. … I call them every day.”) (c) Wilson referred to Senators Murray and Cantwell as the “Pike Street whores,” as does the caller in the voicemail messages; (d) Wilson also referred to Senator Murray as “sneaker shoes Murray,” a phrase that also was stated on some of the voicemail messages; and (e) Wilson made the following remarks, which are similar to the rhetoric in many of the voicemail messages. “They need to be strung up, and I mean put the gallows. I will take no prisoners. …  And I don’t care what they think. They want to come throw me in jail, they can go ahead and do that. That’s fine.”

 

Right-Wing Extremism Danger For America Growing

As one of the commenter’s on this blog noted tonight it was a conservative extremist who blew up the Federal Buildingin Oklahoma City during President Clinton’s time in office.  With that as a harsh reminder the news tonight from Homeland Security is startling.  There is an underside to America that is hell-bent on destruction and destroying the underpinnings of the fabric of our nation.  They will spin themselves as the ones trying to save the country from ‘socialism’, and pretend to be the keepers of ‘our heritage’.  In fact, as Homeland Security notes they are “lone wolves and small terrorist cells” intent on death and mayhem.

Right-wing extremist groups may be using the recession and the election of the nation’s first African-American president to recruit members, a Department of Homeland Security report contends.

Though the nine-page report said it has “no specific information that domestic right-wing terrorists are currently planning acts of violence,” it said real-estate foreclosures, unemployment and tight credit “could create a fertile recruiting environment for right-wing extremists and even result in confrontations between such groups and government authorities similar to those in the past.”

The report, prepared in coordination with the FBI and published April 7, was distributed to federal, state and local law enforcement officials under the title “Right-wing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment.”

It compares the current climate the 1990s, “when right-wing extremism experienced a resurgence fueled largely by an economic recession, criticism about the outsourcing of jobs, and the perceived threat to U.S. power and sovereignty by other foreign powers.”

It cites proposed restrictions on weapons as likely to increase membership in extremist groups and expresses concern the groups might try to recruit veterans.

The report also cites concern about anti-Semitism, saying that some groups are blaming the loss of U.S. jobs and home foreclosures on “a deliberate conspiracy conducted by a cabal of Jewish ‘financial elites’ ” in an attempt to recruit members.

The election of President Obama is cited as a key recruitment tool. “Many right-wing extremists are antagonistic toward the new presidential administration and its perceived stance on a range of issues, including immigration and citizenship, the expansion of social programs to minorities, and restrictions on firearm ownership and use,” the report said.

It said that twice in the run-up to the 2008 presidential election, “extremists appeared to be in the early planning stages of some threatening activity targeting the Democratic nominee, but law enforcement interceded.”

The report said that “lone wolves and small terrorist cells” represent the nation’s biggest terrorist threat because their low profile makes it difficult to intervene before they act.