Washington, D.C.– On Monday, Attorney General Eric Holder announced the formation of a Department of Justice task force to combat “escalating danger” from “homegrown” terrorists in the United States.
In a video statement posted on the DOJ website, Holder claimed it was time to focus on terrorism here in the U.S. The video has since been removed.
“We face an escalating danger from self-radicalized individuals within our own borders,” said Holder.
He went on to cite the Fort Hood shootings in 2009 and the Boston Marathon bombings in 2013 as examples of “the danger we face from these homegrown threats.”
This newly minted task force, the “Domestic Terrorism Executive Committee,” is in essence a reconstituted version of a now defunct task force created by former Atty. Gen. Janet Reno after the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995. The task force will consist of leaders from the FBI, the Justice Department’s National Security Division and U.S. attorneys.
The task force under Reno focused mainly on right-wing extremism, while Holder’s version will reportedly focus on Internet radicalization.
“As the nature of the threat we face evolves to include the possibility of individual radicalization via the Internet, it is critical that we return our focus to potential extremists here at home,” said Holder.
With the recent characterization of the Bundy supporters as “domestic terrorists,” by Senator Harry Reid, and the revelation that President Obama considered using military force against those that stood in support of the Bundy Ranch under a Department of Defense directive, it begs the question as to who will actually be targeted by this task force.
As previously reported here at BenSwann.com, last month the FBI began an investigation into the militia and supporters that stood with Cliven Bundy during the standoff at his ranch.
Could this task force simply be the continuation and culmination of a narrative that has been forwarded by the government for a number of years?
First there was the MIAC report, which claimed that potential terrorists include people who own gold, Ron Paul supporters, libertarians, and even people who fly the U.S. flag.
Then in 2012, there was a leaked Homeland Security study that claimed Americans who are “reverent of individual liberty,” and “suspicious of centralized federal authority” are possible “extreme right-wing” terrorists.
More recently, there is a Department of Defense training manual, obtained by Judicial Watch, using a FOIA request, which lists people who embrace “individual liberties” and honor “states’ rights,” among other characteristics, as potential “extremists” who are likely to be members of “hate groups.”
This document goes on to call the Founding Fathers extremists, stating, “In U.S. history, there are many examples of extremist ideologies and movements, “ including, “The colonists who sought to free themselves from British rule.”
With the continual militarization of executive agencies and local law enforcement, and the refocusing on “domestic threats,” it seems that the nebulous term of “extremist” can be applied to virtually anyone that questions the status quo or stands up against authoritarian systems of power.