Another power substation attack left more than 14000 without power in Washington state, and they're still calling it "vandalism"

Is that so. To me, labeling something as "vandalism” is a presumption about the perps’ motives. Vandalism is a certain kind of infliction of damage.

Maybe cops and such really do use “vandalism” differently, as a generic fallback term for such acts, only to be changed later if some other motive (revenge, terrorism, etc.) turns up?

Ah, now i feel so restful, so assured.

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I know the economy is bad, but gutting a substation for copper? that’s just a bad idea… /sarcasm


No no, it’s just vandalism, you see. The meddling kids were bored that day with spraypainting walls and egging people’s houses.


“Boogaloo types” was the probably the first thing on investigators’ minds when this happened. There are a lot of those in WA. More likely than TikTok kids, a single disgruntled individual, or even hatemongers like the NC attacks.

You need considerable firepower or tools to do what they did. They took out multiple substations. This was an attack by some group.


The FBI is looking into the NC substation attacks. They’re not going to say anything until they’re sure a public statement won’t hinder the investigation.

And yeah, “vandalism” is a catch all for “people breaking shit” until they know more.


In many cases they’re not even putting sandbags between the cooling fins and the chain-link fences through which these right -wing yahoos can fire.

Power sub-stations have been regularly identified as low-risk/high-value infrastructure targets in neo-Nazi literature for decades. As others have noted, to brush it off as “vandalism” in 2022 indicates a deeper problem with law enforcement than mere “cop speak”.


The chaos caused by this kind of thing just makes the cops’ job harder, and a power outage affects people the cops like just as much as people they don’t. Why would they want this?

I agree they’re not taking the threat seriously enough, or learning anything from the literature readily available to anyone who wants to find it. Cops often operate on a very short-sighted plan of dealing with that they perceive as the immediate threat. A big peaceful protest? Well there are a lot of people, and they’re angry, so something bad is going to happen. One person or a small number of people talking about some really dangerous stuff but not actually doing anything at the moment? Eh, they’re fine.

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It’s not that they want this (although there are a lot of cops who sympathise with far-right ideology). It’s that they want to pretend this isn’t a serious problem perpetrated by a network of fascists, because that does make their job easier in the short term.


Exactly. Not conspiracy, apathy. Hanlon’s razor and all that.


No-one is arguing conspiracy. This is a problem of American policing culture, which goes beyond apathy when it comes to potential acts of right-wing terrorism in particular.


Like reading SIEGE…

James Mason a former American Nazi Party member and neo-Nazi was a proponent of the idea of “leaderless resistance” as detailed in SIEGE a collection of writings from the defunct National Socialist Liberation Front (NSLF) which advocated violence against political opponents, Jews and non-whites of which he deemed to be the supposedly Jewish controlled entity he referred to as “The System” which has since been embraced by the terrorist group Atomwaffen Division (AWD) in the modern day.


Man, that Overton Window is getting a workout.


Vandalism, terrorism - tomatoe, tomatoh.

Yep, and that’s especially true of recent right-wing terrorism - they’re extremely networked and actually organized, so the media and politicians continuing to pretend like they’re all “lone wolves” is really a desperate attempt to ignore reality.


It’s “vandalism” until they have a good enough facial photo to rule out “White.” Once they do it can be “terrorism.”


right? i’m pretty sure i remember a day not all too long ago when things like graffiti and broken windows were considered existential threats to the united states

attacks on power stations can only kill people so vandalism is definitely the best word. :roll_eyes:

well. they could be white christian nationalists, or they could be white nationalists who believe in neo odansism, or they could be white nationalists who believe in no god at all. it’s better not to speculate so early on


Exception to that rule:



February 2022



The facilities themselves, easily, the surrounding area to a sufficient degree to be useful, incredibly difficult. One of the problems with power substation attacks is that a lot of them are in somewhat remote areas. Someone in a wooded area can stay back on land not owned by the power company and pop off shots for a while. To shoplift from a Walmart you have to enter the facility. You can sit a couple hundred yards outside of a substation.

It isn’t only far right people who have been picked up for such things, though they are the obvious suspects for a current action. During the Green Scare in the 90s some of the charges in Operation Backfire were for destruction of electrical equipment.

Sure if they fit that bill. Other cases, like the Arkansas attacks from a few years ago seem to have been a single deeply disturbed individual. It would be nice if cops were always wait for evidence before calling something terrorism.

It varies by jurisdiction. In some places vandalism is the neutral term for any intentional destruction of property, but in others it only covers the more minor acts. In most places vandalism is the safest term to use because it doesn’t assume facts not yet established.