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Posts Tagged ‘militias’

How Glenn Beck Helps Violent Right-Wing Militias

April 7, 2010 |

Glenn Beck has done more than any other person to amplify and mainstream the movement’s hateful and foreboding anti-government message.

Reading last week’s disturbing news accounts about the Midwestern arrest of nine alleged members of a Christian militia known as the Hutaree, a group whose members were reportedly planning to kill cops in order to spark a wider, armed revolt against the U.S. government, I noticed this nugget [emphasis added]:

FBI agents moved quickly against Hutaree because its members were planning an attack sometime in April, prosecutors said.

My hunch is the self-described “warriors” of the Hutaree probably circled April 19 on their calendars for any cop-killing fantasy they might have planned to pull off. Why April 19? That was the day, 17 years ago, when the FBI staged its final failed assault on cult leader David Koresh’s heavily armed compound in Waco, Texas. It was on April 19, 1993, following a 51-day siege, that Koresh’s fanatical followers, rather than surrendering to authorities, staged mass suicides (and, in some cases, executions) as the compound burned to the ground.

Precisely two years later, on April 19, 1995, right-wing zealot Timothy McVeigh commemorated the Waco inferno by declaring war on the federal government and blowing up his rented Ryder truck outside of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City. McVeigh’s act of far-right radical terrorism sheared the north side off the Murrah Building, killing 168 people and injuring hundreds more. (“I reached the decision to go on the offensive — to put a check on government abuse of power,” McVeigh later wrote.)

April 19 remains an almost mythical date among dedicated government haters. It’s a date that lives in infamy as proof of the dark consequences of when a tyrannical government (run by Democrats) turns on its own.

So yeah, as the Hutaree gun nuts allegedly plotted in the woods of Michigan on the best way to kill cops, pieced together their seditious plans to wage war on the U.S. government, and planned their upcoming confrontation with the Antichrist, I’m guessing the landmark militia day of April 19 loomed large.

For anyone who thought the dark, Waco-fueled chapter of domestic extremism in this country was behind us, the Hutaree arrests were a jarring reminder that, with the election of another Democratic president, the violent militia message is back.

And it’s stronger than ever.

Not only have the number of radical-right extremist groups exploded in the wake of President Obama’s election (more than 500 today, as compared to just 200 during the 1990s), but these militia members now have a proud sponsor in the person of Fox News’ Glenn Beck, who has done more than any other person to amplify and mainstream the movement’s hateful and foreboding anti-government message. Beck continues to give a voice, and national platform, to the same deranged, hard-core militia haters and self-style “patriots” who hounded the new, young Democratic president in the early 1990s in the wake of Waco.

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The Evangelical “Mainstream” Insanity Behind the Michigan “End Times” Militia

Huff Post – Frank Schaeffer

Posted: April 1, 2010 02:24 PM

A federal prosecutor in Michigan says authorities decided to arrest members of the Hutaree Christian militia after learning “they were prepared to kill.”

When I first learned of the news I went to the Hutaree Militia homepage and was struck by the fact that their site included links to a number of evangelical “End Times” sites like that of the Jack Van Impe ministries.

In the 1970s and 80s I appeared several times with Jack Van Impe on his TV program. His act was to predict the “imminent” return of Jesus. My act was to raise money for my latest far religious right effort to make abortion illegal.

As the son of well known evangelicals and far right leader Francis Schaeffer I was in the middle of the chain of events that led to the arrests of men prepared to kill cops for Jesus. The rhetoric we in the early pro-life movement unleashed combined, with the apocalyptic fantasies of the fundamentalist evangelicals, is a deadly brew.

As I describe in detail in my books Crazy For God and Patience With God this movement has a deep evangelical background. In fact I’ve been predicting violence from these people for years now, something I talk about in detail in Patience With God (from which I drew material for this article since I have a whole chapter there about the “Left Behind” cult).

My warnings have been largely ignored by the mainstream media who haven’t a clue as to the sort of religious paranoia boiling in the Tea Party and other movements.

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Thomas Piatek

Undercover FBI Agent Helped In Sting Of Hutaree Militia

TPM MUCKRAKER

Justin Elliott | March 30, 2010, 6:20PM

A nice catch from the Wall Street Journal: A court document in the Hutaree case appears to have inadvertently revealed that an undercover FBI agent was involved in bringing down the Christian militia group.

The indictments of the nine Hutaree members — charged in an alleged plot to kill police — show up in a court record database on March 23. But the indictments were still sealed at the time. The Feds didn’t make arrests until this past weekend.

The now-unsealed records show that on March 26, a correction was made to the indictment of one of the men, Thomas Piatek, because his middle name was listed wrong in the indictment and arrest warrant.

In the document noting the correction, this passage appears:

“The evidence presented before the Grand Jury … included the sworn testimony of a law enforcement officer that the person pictured therein is the person known by a Cooperating Witness and an undercover FBI agent … ”

So there you have it — there was an undercover agent and a cooperating witness who positively identified Piatek. We’re pretty sure there’s a good story behind this one …

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Armed Revolt in the Obama Era? Right-Wing Gun Nuts Share Their Paranoid Worldview

By Max Blumenthal, The Daily Beast. Posted May 1, 2009.

Gun show enthusiasts make it abundantly clear why they’re stocking up on firepower.

On April 18 and 19, I attended gun shows in Antioch, Calif., and Reno, Nev., to probe the culture of gun enthusiasts at the onset of the Barack Obama era.

I came away from these events with a portrait of a heavily armed, tightly organized movement incited by right-wing radio to a fever-pitched resentment of Obama and his allies in Congress.

Even as the economy suffers, gun dealers and their Washington lobbyists are leveraging renewed anti-government sentiment into unprecedented sales figures and fattened membership rolls.

“We’ve been swamped today,” an NRA representative from Antioch boasted. “We’ve practically ran out of our materials that we give away at sign-up.”

Fueled by the screeds of radio hosts Michael Savage, Glenn Beck, and the lesser-known, but increasingly influential, online conspiracist Alex Jones, many gun-show attendees I spoke to were convinced Obama planned to usher in a Marxist dictatorship.

They warned that the president’s power grab would only begin with mass gun seizures. “If Obama takes away our guns,” a young, .45-caliber-pistol-toting man from Reno told me, “it’s just a step into trying to take away everything else.”

Indeed, in their minds, average Americans opposed to the Obama agenda would be herded into FEMA-run concentration camps by a volunteer army of glassy-eyed liberal college graduates.

“When they start imprisoning Americans, and people start seeing that we’re the enemy, then that’ll make it hot,” predicted one young man from Antioch sporting a button for former Republican presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul of Texas. “People talk about a revolution,” the young man continued, “an armed revolution. I think police crackdowns on individuals will tip the scales.”

More than a few gun dealers and attendees echoed the young man’s seeming enthusiasm for armed revolt. One Contra Costa, Calif., gun dealer named Rich predicted, during an otherwise casual off-camera conversation, that “some nut” would assassinate Obama within one year of any Democratic attempt at gun-control legislation.

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