Sure, the unemployed and “academics” in black Wal-Mart hoodies may be useful idiots, but Michael Krieger says that government attempts to get the right to call them terrorists is just as useful. Don’t give in either way…
Antifa is Playing Right Into the Hands of a Burgeoning Police State
Many people involved in politics swear by the notion that “the ends justify the means,” which is typically the sign of a self-serving actor attempting to justify questionable if not downright evil action in order to get what he or she wants. While pursuit of “the greater good” is often put up for public consumption, the driving force behind this sort of action is almost always personal gain of some sort. This is what most politicians do for a living, which is why they are justifiably hated by the general public.
The moment you justify one very wrong action to achieve a noble goal, what’s to stop you from next even more unethical action, or the next and the next? Nothing. This is what’s so dangerous about going down such a path. Indeed, those who fight monsters often end up becoming the exact thing they claim to be fighting. The world doesn’t benefit from this, only the person who has gained power as a result does, at least superficially. Ultimately, even that person doesn’t benefit when all is said and done. A person who attains their goal by sacrificing principles is a tormented, miserable person. They may seem to “have it all” from the outside, but deep down they hate themselves and what they’ve become. There is no peace. I believe karma eventually catches up to everybody one way or the other.
– From May’s post: Do Ends Justify the Means?
One of the primary motivating factors that drove me to start writing publicly on a daily basis, was a recognition that the chaos and cultural lack of cohesion resulting from the thievery of the financial crisis and the increasingly corrupt, socioeconomic paradigm we live under would provide the pretext for “the state,” whether governed by a Democrat or Republican, to further dismantle civil liberties and usher in a country increasingly defined by less freedom. This was a motivating concern under Obama and it remains a motivating concern under Trump.
As I’ve warned repeatedly over the years, at some point the “war on terror” would be brought home to the good ol’ USA, with all enemies suddenly being labeled domestic terrorists. This is happening right now, thanks in large part to all the media hysteria about antifa and neo-Nazis.
Personally, I try to keep things simple and think it’d be wise if others did did the same for the sake of our future. I believe offensive violence is almost never justified, while self-defense almost always is. The purported objective of any group is irrelevant. The worst tyrants in the world always claim to be working for “the people” as they lock people up in gulags or concentration camps to torture and kill them. Ends don’t justify the means. The means are everything.
The reason I’m writing this post is to demonstrate that antifa is playing right into the hands of those who wish to further the objectives of a burgeoning police state. They provide fuel for unconscious people on the other side of the political spectrum who see their thuggishness and then squeal to the government to “do something about it.” If I didn’t know better, I’d assume antifa were probably a bunch of deep state operatives trying to convince the groveling public to cry out for a strong hand government solution. Since I have no evidence to back this up, I’ll just go ahead and call them useful idiots.
Importantly, it’s not just those dressing up like ninjas punching people for wearing polo shirts who are the only useful idiots. Those on the “right” begging the government to call them terrorists are just as foolish. As I tweeted yesterday:
Don’t use words the government wants you to use.
The government wants us to start calling each other terrorists.
Don’t do it.
— Michael Krieger (@LibertyBlitz) August 31, 2017
For more on that angle, see my recent article titled: Stop Asking the Federal Government to Label Groups You Dislike ‘Terrorists.’
Unfortunately, it seems this train has already left the station. The results for those of us who love freedom might not be pretty.
As Politico reported earlier today:
Federal authorities have been warning state and local officials since early 2016 that leftist extremists known as “antifa” had become increasingly confrontational and dangerous, so much so that the Department of Homeland Security formally classified their activities as “domestic terrorist violence,” according to interviews and confidential law enforcement documents obtained by POLITICO.
Since well before the Aug. 12 rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, turned deadly, DHS has been issuing warnings about the growing likelihood of lethal violence between the left-wing anarchists and right-wing white supremacist and nationalist groups.
Previously unreported documents disclose that by April 2016, authorities believed that “anarchist extremists” were the primary instigators of violence at public rallies against a range of targets. They were blamed by authorities for attacks on the police, government and political institutions, along with symbols of “the capitalist system,” racism, social injustice and fascism, according to a confidential 2016 joint intelligence assessment by DHS and the FBI.
Those reports appear to bolster Trump’s insistence that extremists on the left bore some blame for the clashes in Charlottesville and represent a “problem” nationally. But they also reflect the extent that his own political movement has spurred the violent backlash.
“It was in that period [as the Trump campaign emerged] that we really became aware of them,” said one senior law enforcement official tracking domestic extremists in a state that has become a front line in clashes between the groups. “These antifa guys were showing up with weapons, shields and bike helmets and just beating the shit out of people. … They’re using Molotov cocktails, they’re starting fires, they’re throwing bombs and smashing windows.”
Almost immediately, the right-wing targets of the antifa attacks began fighting back, bringing more and larger weapons and launching unprovoked attacks of their own, the documents and interviews show. And the extremists on both sides have been using the confrontations, especially since Charlottesville, to recruit unprecedented numbers of new members, raise money and threaten more confrontations, they say.
The way to stop this is actually pretty simple. Don’t get sucked in. Don’t pick “a side,” and don’t pressure others to do so. It’s just gang warfare and it won’t lead to anything good.
Moreover, we must denounce offensive violence as a political tactic and marginalize those who advocate it. 90% of people don’t want anything to do with street violence irrespective of how much you despise the system, and believe me, I despise it. Don’t give into the negative energy. Negative energy creates negative outcomes.
Now back to Politico.
Even before Charlottesville, dozens and, in some cases, hundreds of people on both sides showed up at events in Texas, California, Oregon and elsewhere, carrying weapons and looking for a fight. In the Texas capital of Austin, armed antifa protesters attacked Trump supporters and white groups at several recent rallies, and then swarmed police in a successful effort to stop them from making arrests.
Rallies are scheduled over the next few months across the country, including in Texas, Oregon, Missouri and Florida. Authorities are particularly concerned about those in states where virtually anyone, including activists under investigation for instigating violence, can brandish assault rifles in public.
“Both the racists and a segment of violent antifa counter-protestors are amped for battle in an escalating arms race, where police departments are outmaneuvered, resulting in increasingly violent dangerous confrontations,” said former New York City police officer Brian Levin, who has been monitoring domestic militants for 31 years, now at the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino. “It’s an orchestrated dance. The rallies spill over into social media and then even more people show up at the next rally primed for violent confrontation.”
Some of the DHS and FBI intelligence reports began flagging the antifa protesters before the election. In one from last September, portions of which were read to POLITICO, DHS studied “recent violent clashes … at lawfully organized white supremacist” events including a June 2016 rally at the California Capitol in Sacramento organized by the Traditionalist Workers Party and its affiliate, the Golden State Skinheads.
According to police, counter-protesters linked to antifa and affiliated groups like By Any Means Necessary attacked, causing a riot after which at least 10 people were hospitalized, some with stab wounds.
“By any means necessary” is basically the dictator’s blueprint. Anyone who espouses such ideology is an unconscious threat to society.
At the Sacramento rally, antifa protesters came looking for violence, and “engaged in several activities indicating proficiency in pre-operational planning, to include organizing carpools to travel from different locations, raising bail money in preparation for arrests, counter-surveilling law enforcement using three-man scout teams, using handheld radios for communication, and coordinating the event via social media,” the DHS report said.
Several state law enforcement officials said that all of those accelerating factors have come to pass. And recent FBI and DHS reports confirm they are actively monitoring “conduct deemed potentially suspicious and indicative of terrorist activity” by antifa groups.
The two agencies also said in their April 2016 assessment that many of the activities the groups engaged in “are not within the purview of FBI and DHS collection” due to civil liberties and privacy protections, including participating in training camps, holding meetings and communicating online.
Read the above paragraph over and over until you get it. The feds will claim they need the public to give up more civil liberties to fight “domestic terrorists.” If you’re dumb enough to give into this, I don’t know what to tell you.
All that said, I will not stand here and tell you that unconscious gangs fighting in the street isn’t a threat. It’s certainly becoming an issue, but we need to take a step back, take a deep breath, and not respond emotionally. Indeed, I think the recent approach voiced by the mayor of Berkeley is wise. He suggests treating groups like antifa as gangs.
Here’s some of what he said:
BERKELEY (CBS SF) — Mayor of Berkeley Jesse Arreguin on Monday said it is time to confront the violent extremism on the left by treating black-clad Antifa protesters as a gang.
“I think we should classify them as a gang,” said Arreguin. “They come dressed in uniforms. They have weapons, almost like a militia and I think we need to think about that in terms of our law enforcement approach.”
This is a preferable approach to using the word “terrorist” since the latter definition causes people to lose their minds and justify a destruction of the Constitution. Let’s not be stupid.