SPLC, DHS, Community Officials Team Up to Attack Patriot Groups
Friday, October 8, 2010
Stewart Rhodes writes today on the Oath Keepers website that the Southern Poverty Law Center is now officially part of the Department of Homeland Security. Rhodes sources a DHS document, entitled “Countering Violent Extremism Working Group,” that lists Richard Cohen as a member of the DHS created group. Cohen is president and CEO of the Southern Poverty Law Center. In addition to Cohen, a number of law enforcement officials are members of the DHS group, including Austin Chief of Police Art Acevedo.
“What does the working group do? Make recommendations on training and how to use all of the local resources — police, social services, media, NGO’s, you name it – to fight ‘extremism.’ So, now no need to file a FOIA request to discover that SPLC is writing the reports naming constitutionalists as possible terrorists. Now it is in your face and the mask is off,” writes Rhodes.
The document encourages local “partners” and the feds to work together to share “threat-related information… and develop case studies that can be used by local authorities as a learning tool for law enforcement personnel” in order to prevent “ideologically-motivated violent crime (radicalization, violent extremism, etc.),” in short the patriot movement.
In early April of 2009, a document produced by the Department of Homeland Security, “Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment,” characterized patriot political groups that reject “federal authority in favor of state or local authority, or [reject] government authority entirely” as domestic terrorists.
The DHS report followed similar reports issued by the Missouri Information Analysis Center and the Virginia Fusion Center. The MIAC report specifically describes supporters of presidential candidates Ron Paul, Chuck Baldwin, and Bob Barr as “militia” influenced terrorists and instructs the Missouri police to be on the lookout for supporters displaying bumper stickers and other paraphernalia associated with the Constitutional, Campaign for Liberty, and Libertarian parties.
According to the Americans for Legal Immigration PAC, the MIAC documents were heavily influenced by “faulty and politicized research issued by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) and Anti Defamation League (ADL).” In 2008, law enforcement officers from across Missouri gathered in the town of Arnold to hear from ADL experts on right-wing extremism.