Monday, April 18, 2005

Snubbed Again 

From an MSNBC article by Steve Johnson, entitled "10 Years after Terror, Radical Right Still a Threat":
Although it’s been 10 years since the Oklahoma City bombing, and no similar attacks have occurred on U.S. soil, experts who follow the extreme radical right say they still pose a serious threat of domestic terrorism . . . .

Those who follow the violent right-wing movement in the United States break it down into two broad groups — the anti-government Patriot movement, with which Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh was associated, and hate groups such as the neo-Nazis and Ku Klux Klan, although membership in both groups often overlaps.

"When we say 'Patriot movement,' we mean groups who are desperately anti-government, and very involved in conspiracy theories such as the U.N. is going to take over the U.S.," Potok said . . . .

While organized militant groups are a threat in that they tend to gather people who have criminal tendencies, in general, "terror attacks are not planned by hate groups in smoky rooms," said Potok. "In virtually every case, it is a few people who break away from the group and decide the time is now."
After the headlines of the last ten days it must have taken remarkable mental discipline on Mr. Johnson's part to ignore a third "broad group" of right-wingers who have been known to indulge in deadly violence against innocent civilians -- yet somehow he managed the trick, because this crew receives nary a mention in his domestic-terror overview. Can you guess which group we're talking about?

What if we told you that their poster boy's initials are "E.R."? -- and that E.R.'s weapon of choice is T.N.T.?

Okay, here's the answer.

This handy chart from ReligiousTolerance.org tallies acts of violence against abortion clinics in the U.S. and Canada from 1989 to 1994 (categories include "Murders, Attempted Murders," "Bombing, Arson, Attempted Bombing or Arson," "Invasion, Assault & Battery, Vandalism, Trespassing, Death Threats, Burglary, Stalking," etc. Category 3, you will note, includes 554 anthrax hoaxes in 2001). What more do right-wing Christian anti-abortion fanatics have to do to get MSNBC's -- much less the Department of Homeland Security's -- attention?

Just as an exercise, can anyone devise a blanket definition of "terrorism" that would exclude what Eric Rudolph and his compeers have been doing all these years?

SIDEBAR: Also from Johnson's MSNBC article . . . .
The late 1990s also produced a law enforcement crackdown on the Common Law Court movement, a subset of the militant right that claimed federal and state courts and officials had no jurisdiction over U.S. citizens. At its height, movement supporters filed hundreds of liens against judges, lawyers or public officials they disliked, tying up their property in complicated litigation. But more than 30 states passed or beefed up laws against impersonating public officials or filing unjustified property liens, and hundreds of Common Law Court devotees were convicted and jailed.
Call the FBI at once! This shadowy cult appears to have extended its insidious tendrils into both the House of Representatives and the Senate.

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