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Opinion Arresting Capitol Rioters Won't Stop Hardcore Extremists

12:50  03 may  2021
12:50  03 may  2021 Source:   thedailybeast.com

Did agents raid home of wrong woman over Jan. 6 riot? Maybe.

  Did agents raid home of wrong woman over Jan. 6 riot? Maybe. ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — “We’re looking for Nancy Pelosi’s laptop,” FBI agents told Marilyn Hueper after briefly handcuffing her. Hueper shot back: “That still doesn’t explain why you’re in my home. Or in Homer, Alaska.” The search for the House speaker’s laptop had taken a U.S. Capitol Police officer thousands of miles away from home for an FBI raid on Hueper’s home, looking for something stolen during the Jan. 6 insurrection — and the person who did it.The agents would walk out of Hueper’s home with iPads, cellphones and a pocket-sized copy of the Declaration of Independence. They took a laptop, but it wasn’t from Pelosi’s office.

Moreover, the arrests of suspected right-wing extremists as long ago as 2015 might lead to a years-long paper trail that includes evidence of militia or gang affiliations; in contrast, those arrested since January 6 might have affiliations not yet known to investigators. Some of the standard methods of countering violent extremism —such as promoting employment or waiting patiently for participants to mellow with age—probably won ’ t mollify middle-aged, middle-class insurrectionists. And simply targeting better-established far-right organizations will not prevent people like the Capitol rioters from

A self-described " hardcore leftist" was arrested Friday for allegedly issuing a call to arms online to recruit like-minded individuals to join him in violently confronting pro-Trump supporters expected to gather at the Florida state Capitol in Tallahassee on Sunday, just days before the Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Saturday granted Tallahassee Mayor John Dailey’s request to have the National Guard brought in to help protect the state Capitol . This comes as an FBI internal memo warned of potential armed protests at state Capitol buildings in all 50 states in the days leading up to the inauguration.

One would think the charging of some 440 Capitol marauders would defang rightwing extremists. Likewise, their de-platforming on social media and the exit of the president who inspired them. Likewise, the splintering of groups like the Proud Boys and Oath Keepers, whose members have been rounded up by authorities for storming the citadel.

Kent Nishimura/Getty © Provided by The Daily Beast Kent Nishimura/Getty

Nope. That won’t stop them.

Experts who monitor domestic terrorism say we’re heading into an even more dangerous phase post-Jan.6. These groups are fragmenting and losing the ability to vent frustration in a public manner. But that does not mean they are going away. It means that a lot of angry radicals are growing angrier.

President Biden's first address to Congress is invite-only

  President Biden's first address to Congress is invite-only WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden's first address to Congress is an invite-only affair, no guests allowed. The restrictions for Wednesday's event are due to COVID-19 safety protocols, but will have the added security benefit of a limited number of people inside the Capitol for the president's first major indoor event since he took office just weeks after the Jan. 6 insurrection. Fencing is still up around the U.S. Capitol, and the National Guard is still there. (AP Photo/J.

Authorities arrested Coffman of Alabama near the Capitol after noticing the handle of a gun in his pickup truck while they were responding to pipe bombs left outside the headquarters of the Democratic National Committee and Republican National Committee, both of which are near the Capitol . Most of the cases filed against rioters so far were for less serious offenses involving being inside the Capitol illegally, and many defendants were released within a day. An FBI agent said in an affidavit that he identified former Olympic swimmer Klete Keller - who has two gold medals and three other medals

Biden appeared to be making a clear reference to January 6, when supporters of former President Donald Trump stormed the Capitol in protest of Biden’s 2020 presidential election victory. Though the storming of the Capitol caused several deaths, property damage and also led to looting, social media users condemned Biden for calling it the worst attack on democracy since the Civil War over more serious incidents like the assassination of four presidents, including President John F. Kennedy, and the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

“You will see a period of growth,” says Daryl Johnson, the former lead analyst for domestic terrorism for the Department of Homeland Security.

“The people on the outside periphery will likely distance themselves and get out of the movement. But the pool inside is going to be more hardcore and resolved.”

He predicts more violence during the rest of President Joe Biden’s term. And maybe for many more years after that. While we’re unlikely to see a mass event like Jan. 6 that brought together 10,000 people at the Capitol, there could be more local attacks on a smaller but maybe more lethal scale—car rammings, assassination plots, and bombings of state government buildings, infrastructure, or places where ordinary folks gather.

For sure, some of the core 1,000 who breached the Capitol are spooked by the legal consequences. But a sense of glory surrounding the insurrection and resentment will animate the more committed militants. While they’ve lost their megaphone in Trump, other politicians amplify his message in the mainstream political discourse. And more fodder exists for recruitment among right-wingers fearful of anti-gun legislation and the expansion of minority rights under a Democratic president. The stressors of the pandemic remain. People are socially estranged, under financial stress, and fearful of change. Gun sales have exploded since Jan. 6.

Biden's first address to Congress is invite-only

  Biden's first address to Congress is invite-only WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden's first address to Congress is an invite-only affair, no guests allowed. The restrictions for Wednesday's event are due to COVID-19 safety protocols, but will have the added security benefit of a limited number of people inside the Capitol for the president's first major indoor event since he took office just weeks after the Jan. 6 insurrection. Fencing is still up around the U.S. Capitol, and the National Guard is still there. (AP Photo/J.

Rioters outside the Capitol . Organizations that participated in the event include: Black Conservatives Fund, Eighty Percent Coalition, Moms For America, Peaceably Gather, Phyllis Schlafly Eagles, Rule of Law Defense Fund, Stop The Steal, Turning Point Action, Tea Party Patriots, Women For America First, and Concerned about the approaching mob, Representative Maxine Waters (D-CA) called Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund, who was not on Capitol grounds but at the police department's headquarters. When asked what the Capitol Police were doing to stop the rioters , Sund told Waters

They forced Capitol police to barricade the House chamber to stop them from storming in. Stop calling them anarchists: I keep seeing people refer to the Trump rioters as "anarchists." 3 different hardcore trumpers at work have been on rants about how it was really antifa. Are they going to ban guns first or skip straight to arresting “right wing extremists ”.

Shutting down accounts on Twitter, Facebook, or Parler doesn’t shut up extremists. They simply migrate to other spaces like the Telegram messaging system. Conversations are still happening among extremists who encourage each other to make trouble.

No one knows for sure how many combustible individuals lurk about, but militias number in the hundreds across the country. Johnson estimates there could be as many as 145,000 active members of anti-government groups including the Oath Keepers, Three Percenters, Boogaloo Boys, and Proud Boys. Add to that hundreds of thousands of white supremacists and millions of QAnon believers.

You just need a handful of guys willing to get into risky situations, like the six militia members charged last year with plotting to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

And there are certainly a lot of guns circulating with which to create trouble. For the second year running, firearms sales have hit record numbers so far this year. According to the FBI, March 15-21 alone posted the highest number of weekly background checks—more than 1.2 million—since 1998.

'We are not a match': Capitol rioters reported to FBI by exes, dating app users

  'We are not a match': Capitol rioters reported to FBI by exes, dating app users A slew of people who participated in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot have been reported to authorities by exes or by dating app matches. Robert Chapman, of Carmel, New York, was arrested April 22 after he boasted on the dating app Bumble that he was part of the group to "storm the Capitol" during the Jan. 6 riot. A woman he connected with curtly replied, "We are not a match," then reported him to authorities, according to court papers.

Government responses to Capitol rioters must be research-based and not just emotional reactions. The January 6 attack on the Capitol has recommenced calls to give right-wing extremists in Two years of the Alphabet boys cracking down, and the Right won ’ t be able to stop it, even if they want to.

Stop giving excuses for Jenna Ryan and others behavior!” Others criticized the media outlet for attempting to rationalize the actions of people being federally investigated for forming a riot to disrupt the democratic process because it didn’ t deliver the result they wanted. Still, more people on Twitter asked why we should be looking for reasons to excuse the actions of Trump supporters when there isn’ t the same commentary when people of color demonstrate Among the rioters were CEOs coordinating busses to the Capitol , and lawyers seen posting live videos of themselves amidst the violent mob.

Oren Segal, vice president of the Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism, worries most about individuals with violent tendencies who aren’t necessarily card-carrying members of a paramilitary. Sometimes a cluster is just a couple of buddies who meet in someone’s basement.

Of the first 257 people charged in federal court for taking part in the Capitol insurrection, only 33 percent were identified with a militant network, according to a study by the George Washington University Program on Extremism. That means the vast majority were unaffiliated but motivated by the pro-Trump narrative.

“The less organized they are, the more dangerous they are,” Segal says. The FBI can more easily infiltrate an organization like the Oath Keepers, which draws members from the military and law enforcement. But with groups like the Proud Boys splintering, rogue members are harder to monitor. Networks that break up can realign under so many different names that it’s impossible to keep track.

Then there are the lone actors. They could be socially isolated but very much part of a wider ideological community that exists online.

Charged in Jan. 6 riot? Yes, but prison may be another story

  Charged in Jan. 6 riot? Yes, but prison may be another story WASHINGTON (AP) — More than 400 people have been charged with federal crimes in the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol. But prison time may be another story. With new defendants still flooding into Washington's federal court, the Justice Department is under pressure to quickly resolve the least serious of cases. While defendants charged with crimes such as conspiracy and assaulting officers during the insurrection could be looking at hefty sentences, some members of the mob who weren't caught joining in the violence or destruction could see little to no time behind bars.

Some of the most violent events we’ve seen in recent years were perpetrated by self-radicalized gunmen who operated on their own. They didn’t belong to a given group. The shooter who killed 23 people at an El Paso Walmart in 2019. The gunman who slaughtered 11 people at Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life synagogue the year before. Dylann Roof, who fatally shot nine African Americans at a Charleston church in 2015.

These individuals may act alone but think they have people behind them, notes Arie Kruglanski, a University of Maryland professor of psychology who studies radicalization. Mass shooters know they will be remembered. Their “community” can be assumed or imagined. The white supremacist who killed 70 people in Norway in 2011, for instance, believed he was a protector of the race, even if he didn’t consult anyone else.

“The lone wolf is not as lonely as it appears,” Kruglanski warns.

Last year saw a notable absence of mass killings, probably as a function of the pandemic. The opening of public spaces, however, has coincided with at least 147 mass shooting incidents that have killed 166 so far this year. We are likely to experience even more mass slaughter that is politically motivated, predicts Brian Levin, the director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at the California State University, San Bernardino.

They Went to D.C. on Jan. 6. Now They’re Running for Office.

  They Went to D.C. on Jan. 6. Now They’re Running for Office. On Jan. 5, Charles Herbster claims, he was at Donald Trump’s Washington, D.C., hotel with the president’s two adult sons, discussing ways to pressure Congress out of certifying Joe Biden’s victory. On Jan. 6, he attended a pro-Trump rally that later led to an attack on the U.S. Capitol. On Monday, Herbster announced his candidacy for governor of Nebraska. Herbster, who has agricultural businesses in multiple states, is running on the same staunch pro-Trump lines that brought him to D.C. on Jan. 6. (He did not enter the Capitol that day.) And he’s not alone. From Nebraska to New Jersey, attendees of the now-infamous rally that became a riot are campaigning for elected office.

We may also see a diversification of targets from minority groups to political figures, reporters, and public health officials. Extremists have many grievances—land use, guns, COVID restrictions, unemployment, loss of status. They may confuse or conflate different issues as they chat with others online.

“You have highly volatile people who can be picked up by a variety of conspiracies and movements with violent leanings,” Levin says. “That’s a big reservoir to swim in.”

Geographic data on arrests so far could provide clues into where trouble might flare next. A study by the Chicago Project on Security and Threats found that over half of the Capitol rioters who converged from 42 states came from counties that President Joe Biden won. This smashes the common assumption that the Trump fans who resort to violence would mainly hail from his strongholds. In fact, more came from cities and suburbs where they were in the political minority, and thus probably felt marginalized. The largest numbers came from Florida, Pennsylvania, Texas, New York, and California—all places with racial diversity.

These numbers coincide with geographic trends in hate crimes and racist violence examined by Arie Perliger, the director of Security Studies at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell. The same blue states crop up in attacks on minorities or synagogues. Perliger says most incidents before Jan. 6 occurred not in the deep red South but in rural and suburban areas of blue states that have the highest levels of diversity. New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois, California, and even Massachusetts. Spot the pattern here?

State lawmaker faces charges for allegedly allowing protesters into Oregon Capitol

  State lawmaker faces charges for allegedly allowing protesters into Oregon Capitol A Republican state lawmaker faces charges over allegedly allowing a group of protesters into the Oregon Capitol last year. Your browser does not support this video Rep. Mike Nearman was charged with official misconduct and criminal trespass, both misdemeanors, by the Marion County district attorney on Friday, after an investigation by the Oregon State Police. He is scheduled to be arraigned on May 11. ABC News has reached out to Nearman for comment.MORE: Capitol rioters reported to FBI by exes, dating app users: 'We are not a match' A security video of the Dec.

Of the more than 650 violent incidents between 1990 and 2017, Tennessee suffered just 80. California had more than 900 incidents and Illinois over 200.

“In these kinds of states, the polarization and animosity are more toxic,” explains Perliger. In Alabama there is little divide; it’s overwhelmingly conservative. But New York state poses more toxic potential due to the split between the blueish New York City and the reddish upstate.

Anxiety about the economy also fuels xenophobia against growing Hispanic and Asian populations, which are viewed as competition in the labor market, he notes,

Here’s what we need to look out for: states like Georgia that tipped blue, where there is change, demographically and politically. Is there a particular issue that makes right-wingers feel under siege? Is there a charismatic rabble rouser? Study where violent incidents occurred pre-Jan. 6. Last year, Trump supporters stormed state capitols in Oregon and Michigan. In response to lockdowns and restrictions, armed protests flared in Ohio, Kentucky, California, Arizona, and Virginia. These could be hot spots in the months ahead.

Judith Matloff teaches conflict reporting at Columbia’s Graduate School of Journalism. Her latest book is How to Drag a Body and Other Safety Tips You Hope to Never Need.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

Republican lawmaker grabbed a sword and hid on toilet during the Capitol attack .
Rep. Bruce Westerman hid from the Capitol attack in House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy's private bathroom while holding a Civil War sword.As rioters stormed the building, Westerman and McCarthy retreated to the GOP leader's Capitol office.

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