MOSCOW, 07 Jul 2021, RUSSTRAT Institute.
On June 15, 2021, US Attorney General Merrick B. Garland presented the national strategy for countering domestic terrorism, prepared by the US Security Council. I propose to review this document and be convinced that the current White House administration is preparing for ideological purges of its political opponents and encourages snitching at the family level.
The preamble of the 32-page document, signed by US President Joe Biden, mentions mass shooting incidents and attacks on immigrants, blacks and Latinos over the past few years as the main reason for the development of this document. Therefore, it is not difficult to grasp the general orientation of the strategy for countering domestic terrorism.
The introduction goes on to say that domestic terrorism has been observed in the US for centuries and parallels are drawn from the victims of the Ku Klux Klan to the events of January 6, 2021 in the Capitol. According to the US intelligence community, among a wide range of ideologies that inspire terrorists, “racially or ethnically motivated violent extremists (principally those who promote the superiority of the white race) and militia violent extremists are assessed as presenting the most persistent and lethal threats.
Another key component of the threat comes from anti-government or anti-authority violent extremists. Their ideologies can be fluid, evolving, and overlapping. And they can, in some instances, connect and intersect with conspiracy theories and other forms of disinformation and misinformation.”
I would like to note that Islamism is not mentioned in this program document at all, although everyone remembers the terrorist attack on the Boston Marathon in the US or 9/11 quite well.
Strategies for countering domestic terrorism in the US are based on several pillars. The first is efforts to collect, process and exchange information on the full range of threats of domestic terrorism. The second is efforts to prevent the recruitment, incitement and mobilisation of Americans to carry out violence through domestic terrorists.
The third is efforts to contain and prevent the internal terrorist threat before it leads to undesirable consequences. The last element is a set of measures for a long-term solution to the problems of domestic terrorism, which was the result of “multi-level social dynamics” in society such as “racism and bigotry”, the document says.
The document states that the American intelligence community believes that domestic violent extremists (DVES) will pose an increased threat to the US in 2021:
“Enduring DVE motivations pertaining to biases against minority populations and perceived government overreach will almost certainly continue to drive DVE radicalization and mobilization to violence.
Newer sociopolitical developments-such as narratives of fraud in the recent general election, the emboldening impact of the violent breach of the U.S. Capitol, conditions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, and conspiracy theories promoting violence-will almost certainly spur some DVEs to try to engage in violence this year.”
I would like to draw your attention to the fact that, according to the US intelligence community, the possible abuse of authority by the government, stories about fraud in the US elections and conspiracy theories will contribute to the growth of extremist sentiments.
Let me remind you that many media outlets called Donald Trump’s calls to disperse the protests of BLM supporters in 2020, and the sending of federal employees for this purpose, an abuse of authority by the government. The results of the audit of the 2020 elections in a number of states will be announced very soon, and according to June polls, 32% of American voters believe that Biden became president illegally. Also, recently, the version about the laboratory origin of COVID-19 in the US was considered a conspiracy theory and was blocked in the media. Although now, due to political expediency, it has become the main one.
According to the strategy proposed by the Attorney General, it is planned to create a community to combat domestic terrorism, which will cover not only the federal government, but also critical partners. These partners can be broken down into different levels: “state, local, tribal, and territorial governments, as well as foreign allies and partners, civil society, the technology sector, academia, and more.”
The document states that “the Department of Homeland Security will introduce a new systematic approach for utilizing pertinent external, non-governmental analysis and information that will provide enhanced situational awareness of today’s domestic terrorism threat.” Further on, it can be understood that we are talking about the control of Internet platforms that are used by potential terrorists as a means of communication.
The US President proposed an expansion of the budget for the 2022 fiscal year to increase the resources of the Department of Justice and the FBI to ensure the inevitability of justice against domestic terrorists. The Ministry of Justice is also facing the question of the expediency of legislative reform to counter domestic terrorism, which will require consultations with the US Congress.
A separate topic in the national strategy for countering domestic terrorism is the issue of screening out persons who are already serving in the civil service and newly accepted personnel, since “those who protect and defend this nation should reflect the nation, including its vast spectrum of experiences and viewpoints”. I think this phrase should be considered in the context of the “racial justice” that is promoted by the White House administration.
At the end of the document, the focus is again on the terrible mass shooting incidents and attacks on immigrants, blacks and Latinos. It is said that the state sets broader priorities:
“enhancing faith in government and addressing the extreme polarization, fueled by a crisis of disinformation and misinformation often channeled through social media platforms, which can tear Americans apart and lead some to violence.
A hallmark of this democracy is that political change must be pursued through nonviolent means grounded in the principles upon which the United States was founded.
Enhancing faith in American democracy ands accelerating work to contend with an information environment that challenges healthy democratic discourse. We will work toward finding ways to counter the influence and impact of dangerous conspiracy theories that can provide a gateway to terrorist violence.”
In my opinion, such phrases summarising this document are very indicative and characterise it as ideologically aligned with the goals of the US Democratic Party.
Back in 2020, the central, mostly left-wing American media were engaged in undermining confidence in the government and supporting the BLM riots, which were clearly used for political purposes – to prevent a second term of Donald Trump’s rule. There was no question of any healthy democratic discourse when Trump and his supporters were blocked on social networks. The mention of “conspiracy theories” in this document, most likely, will become a reason for the prosecution of citizens only for their opinion.
At a briefing at the White House on the national strategy for countering domestic terrorism, a senior official revealed the government’s further plans. Special Internet resources will be created for the concerned public within the framework of the concept “If you see something, say something”, which was published by the Department of Homeland Security (in 2014).
“This involves creating an environment in which those who are family members, friends or colleagues know that there are opportunities and ways to express concern and seek help for those who, in their opinion, are being radicalised or potentially radicalised towards violence,” the official said.
It is necessary to perceive these initiatives of the US Democratic Party realistically. Without the legislative reform mentioned in the strategy, it will not be possible to fully unleash the flywheel of repression. However, the media behind the Republican Party are already beginning to sound the alarm, as an independent investigation shows that, thanks to embedded FBI agents, at least they knew about the attempt to storm the Capitol on January 6, and in the worst case, coordinated the actions of the protesters.
For the FBI, the situation with provocation of crimes is not new, an interesting material has recently been published telling about it – “To fight crime, the FBI sponsors 15 crimes a day”. Therefore, the supporters of the Republicans have something to fear right now.
Summarising the above, we can conclude that the US Democratic Party is really preparing to carry out repressions against its ideological and political opponents. However, in order to implement their plans, they will need to strengthen their majority in the US Congress, which the Republicans are well aware of. Therefore, the US Congress election in 2022 is becoming more and more principled and important for the main political players in America.