Redditor's discovery leads to white supremacist investigation at Army base


#1

[Permalink]


#2

Sad how they put that quotation in the upper-right of the flyer in a way that implies it's not true.

More generally, it's also frustrating how the word "terrrorist" still hasn't caught on as a way to describe white supremacists.


#3

The White Supremacist and militia ranks are filled with soldiers and cops. So it's not exactly a surprise that they're recruiting at army bases. They've done so for decades. The last time the government pointed this out, and suggested maybe doing something about it, right wingers basically went crazy, and the government retracted the report and apologized.


#4

White Supremacy isn't terrorism because they're not employing or threatening violence against civilians in order to coerce a desired political outcome.

They are threatening violence against civilians, but said violence is not directed at those who have political authority, nor is it undertaken in order to coerce political change. No, White Supremacy is just a plain old hate crime bordering on genocide.

They aren't terrorizing the public at large to pressure the government into taking action against other ethnicities, they're just terrorizing the disenfranchized ethnicities as a form of vigilante persecution and oppression.

That's not to say that if they could gain power in the government they wouldn't use it to further their agenda of hatred, but until they're actually attacking the government and its supporters to force the government to enact the agenda which they themselves cannot, it's not terrorism.


#5

Probably makes it easier to justify killing all those brown people overseas, something the US Military and public seems quite fond of.

It's a Win/Win situation for the US military and the white supremacists. The military get motivated soldiers and the supremacists could do what they wish for.


#6

That's a pretty limited definition of terrorism. Indeed, it's clearly not one the Dept of Homeland Security subscribes to, seeing as how it declared the white power movement a domestic terror threat in 2009.

I think you've also chosen to overlook how, in the mainstream American imagination, violent white supremacists "can't" be "terrorists" because, supposedly, "terrorists" are not white people:

White supremacist groups and actors . . . are styled as marginal - or mavericks - who carry out murderous acts outside and apart from a broader political agenda. While this is clearly not the case, given the universal nativist aims of white supremacist groups and their kindred animus toward Muslims, Jews, Blacks and any and every American who does not hail from a WASP (White Anglo-Saxon Protestant) background - little has been done to vilify their activity as a unique existential threat in the way that foreign political violence is treated as. While such hate groups have not taken on a single act of violence as prominent at the 9/11 attacks, historically, their acts of violence have been far more destructive and politically impactful. Thousands of lynching and hate crime victims, assassinated leaders and intimidated minorities are proof of their terrorism.

"Terrorists" are people who terrorize; I don't see a reason to limit the definition to those who also seek to pressure a government into taking specific actions. And even if I were to grant that definitional limit, I'm sure the case could be made that influencing govt policy certainly is one aim of many violent white supremacists.


#7

but in an ideal democracy, these civilians enjoy, as a consequence of citizenship, political authority over their own lives-- both private and public.


#8

Wikipedia tells us this:

In the international community, terrorism has no legally binding, criminal law definition.[1][2] Common definitions of terrorism refer only to those violent acts that are intended to create fear (terror); are perpetrated for a religious, political, or ideological goal; and deliberately target or disregard the safety of non-combatants (e.g., neutral military personnel or civilians).

Do white supremacists intend to cause fear?
For religious, political, or ideological reasons?
Do they deliberately target the safety of non-combatants?

If you answer "yes" to all three then I think it would be safe to call white supremacists "terrorists".


#9

It's the traditional definition of terrorism, as understood by the world at large prior to the American government and mass media redefining it to mean something between "The Boogeyman" and "Anyone America Doesn't Like". When the word "Terrorist" gets bandied around in relation to people like Edward Snowden, it seems pretty darn clear that the meaning has been twisted and perverted in recent years.

If you'd like proof of my claim as to the traditional meaning, however, simply look at any of the countless books on the subject written before the WTC attacks. I would particularly recommend finding materials on the IRA and other such groups.

I'm not interested in the mainstream American imagination, I'm interested in definition and fact. The imagination of "mainstream America" will gladly tell you any number of wrongheaded and ignorant things which they've made up or heard "somewhere" and deluded themselves into confusing with reality, but that doesn't make it any less of a fantasy.

I am staunchly against White Supremacists along with all other hate groups, but I recognize that their behavior does not actually constitute terrorism as it has traditionally been defined. It is quite bad enough that they engage in hate crimes without having to conflate the issue with actual terrorism.

You can't simply call anyone who "terrorizes" a terrorist. By that definition, a pack of rowdy drunken bikers in a quiet wealthy suburb terrorizing posh retirees are "terrorists", when in reality they're merely hooligans disturbing the peace.

Terrorism has a very long and well documented history. Despite the word being carted out at every turn by the sensationalist media and our recent liberty-curtailing governmental regimes as a catch-all buzzword for anything and everything, Terrorism is in fact a very specific thing.

The IRA were terrorists. The Black Hand were terrorists. The Stern Gang were terrorists. The FLQ were terrorists.

These are political groups that used violence against civilians (typically government figures, but also the public at large) to coerce government action in line with their own agendas.


#10

The Oxford English Dictionary does.

The term originated as a way to describe the atrocities the French government perpetrated upon their opposition. The Reign of Terror wasn't trying to coerce government action, it was government action.

White Supremacists aren't committing hate crimes just because they are hooligans. They believe that whites should dominate non-whites. Supremecy - it's in the name.


Cory Doctorow blogging grievance thread
#11

No it does not. And I quote:

terrorist
Syllabification: ter·ror·ist
Pronunciation: /ˈterərist /

noun

A person who uses terrorism in the pursuit of political aims.

During the French Revolution, the Jacobins (also known as the Montagnards) staged a coup and forcibly usurped control of the unstable revolutionary government. While they were, for a time, the de facto government of the French Republic, it was an illegitimate reign. The duration of their rule came to be known as "The Terror", and those who were associated with the event were known as "Terroristes".

Unfortunately for your argument, this has very little to do with the distinct terminology of "Terrorism" and "Terrorist", which developed later into highly specific terms of great influence to political theory in the 20th century.

Of course, you know full well that your argument is absurd - you're trying to claim that the proper definition of the word is the most recent erroneous and manipulative usage by somehow appealing to the absolute least recent usage recorded. You can't appeal to tradition to justify breaking with tradition.

You have a bad tendency of putting words into my mouth.

I never said that White Supremacists were committing hate crimes because they were hooligans. You're conflating two unrelated points. Please try to pay closer attention and focus on reading comprehension.

White Supremacists are hate criminals. They are not Terrorists, however, because they do not engage in Terrorism - id est, they are not coercing the government in power into a specific political act via violence against civilians.

The violence they commit against civilians is racially motivated, not politically. The violence they commit is not a means to effect their agenda, but rather it is their agenda. The lack of a political motivation defines this as hate crime, not as terrorism.


#12

Actually, as I and others have pointed out here, your limited definition of terrorism is a very -- and too -- specific thing.

I don't care for prescriptivist limitations on language, because language is a living, changing phenomenon. One example is how words take on different shades of meaning, and even entirely different meanings, in different contexts. You and others can cling to older and/or limited definitions of certain words, but the rest of the world moves on, and in this case, "terrorism" has come to mean, for most people in the west, violent acts meant to terrorize others. You haven't said anything that makes me want to budge one bit from my wish that more people would label the white supremacist threat a terrorist threat. Or at least, stop thinking only of non-white "foreigners" when they hear the term, a form of thinking that in itself helps to minimize the very real dangers of increasingly threatening white supremacist groups.


#13

Why not?


#14

Then we shall agree to disagree as to whether White Supremecists have a political agenda or political ideology.


#15

You're purposefully misunderstanding what I have made abundantly clear by cropping out vital context.

Directly before the single line you quote I explain what I am referring to by saying their violence's motivation is not "political".

Their violence is not directed at the government - it is therefor not political in nature, does not constitute Terrorism.

Your citation of wikipedia is flawed in the following regard - White Supremacy is not the same thing as the violence carried out by White Supremacists.

Their beliefs that they should politically dominate non-whites, as well as their general political ideology are distinct from their violence. I stated that their violence itself is not political in nature - it is not carried out with the intention of enacting political change within the extant system.

This does not at all preclude the White Supremacy movement itself from being political - they still attempt to sway public opinion and undoubtedly desire to gain political power within the government and exert that power to further their agenda.

The key distinction is that while their non-violent actions may be political, they have yet to engage in politically motivated violence, and have likewise yet to attempt to coerce the government into action via violence against civilians. Consequently, they have yet to engage in terrorism.


#16

I cannot possibly be the only one consumed with curiosity about whats on the CD.


#17

If you're going to discuss complicated topics such as political violence, you need to employ exactly defined terminology to ensure that everyone is on the same page.

If you're unwilling to discuss the matter in the academically and professionally accepted terminology developed specifically to allow rational discourse to take place such that people might effectively address this particular topic, that's not my problem.


#18

Interracial porn and self loathing?


#19

First incident listed.

From 1868 through the early 1870s the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) functioned as a loosely organized group of political and social terrorists. The Klan's goals included political defeat of the Republican Party and the maintenance of absolute white supremacy in response to newly gained civil and political rights by southern blacks after the Civil War (1861-65). They were more successful in achieving their political goals than they were with their social goals during the Reconstruction era.

from: http://www.georgiaencyclopedia.org/articles/history-archaeology/ku-klux-klan-reconstruction-era


#20

When did bbs suddenly get converted into a university seminar room?

My initial comment that you responded to is not about "academically and professionally accepted" definitions of "terrorism"; it's about those used in daily life. If you insist instead on addressing my initial comment by dragging the issue out of daily life and into a cloistered, pedantic seminar room, that's not my problem.