June 10, 2020

WHAT THE TRUMPBOTS MEAN WHEN THEY BLAME ANTIFA:

How the Far-Right Boogaloo Movement Is Trying to Hijack Anti-Racist Protests for a Race War (Mehdi Hasan, June 10 2020, The Intercept)

Remember: These are heavily armed men, many of them with military training, looking for new and greater opportunities for violent protest. Miller-Idris told me that the boogaloo bois have mobilized "over the past six months in three separate waves of protests" -- against attempts by state legislatures to reform gun laws; against the coronavirus lockdowns and shelter-in-place orders; and now as part of the demonstrations and marches against police brutality and racism, in the wake of the George Floyd killing.

Worryingly, their movement is growing online at breakneck speed. As Reuters reported last week, citing a study from the Tech Transparency Project, "tens of thousands of people joined boogaloo-related Facebook groups over a 30-day period in March and April as stay-at-home orders took effect across the United States. ... Project researchers found discussions about tactical strategies, weapons and creating explosives in some boogaloo Facebook groups."

In March, Timothy Wilson, a 36-year-old Missouri man with neo-Nazi ties, was shot and killed by the FBI after plotting to bomb a hospital in the Kansas City area on the first day of the lockdown. Wilson had told an undercover FBI agent that he had wanted "to create enough chaos to kick start a revolution" and referred to his planned attack as "operation boogaloo."

In April, Aaron Swenson, a 36-year-old Arkansas man, was arrested after he threatened to kill a police officer on a Facebook Live video. "I feel like hunting the hunters," he wrote on Facebook, where he also made "boogaloo" references, according to the police.

THE BOOGALOO BOIS don't operate in a vacuum. Their goals, methods, and personnel overlap with a number of far-right, anti-government groups that also pose a significant threat to law, order, and race relations, from the Proud Boys, to the Oath Keepers, to the Three Percenters, to the Sovereign Citizens. Don't forget the Ku Klux Klan either: The Virginia man arrested for driving his truck into a crowd of Black Lives Matter protesters over the weekend is head of a local KKK chapter.

Posted by at June 10, 2020 4:48 PM

  

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