Letter to the Editor

White supremacists

Monday, September 21, 2020

White supremacists will remain the most "persistent and lethal threat" in the United States through 2021, according to Department of Homeland Security draft documents. The recently released draft reports assess a host of threats, including cyber, foreign influence and irregular migration.

The reports all contain this language: "Among domestic violent extremists, we judge that white supremacist extremists will remain the most persistent and lethal threat in the Homeland through 2021."

One of the reports also finds that Russian state-affiliated actors will continue targeting U.S. industry and all levels of government with "intrusive cyber espionage." One "key takeaway" is that "Russia probably will be the primary covert foreign influence actor and purveyor of disinformation and misinformation in the Homeland." Moscow's primary aim is to undermine the U.S. electoral process and weaken the United States. Some Kremlin-linked disinformation also might motivate acts of violence in the U.S. FYI, Russian agents don’t sign their real names to what you’re reading on Facebook.

Last year, White House officials rebuffed efforts by their DHS colleagues for over a year to make combating domestic terror threats, like white supremacists, a greater priority as specifically spelled out in the National Counterterrorism Strategy. Then-acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan said last year that white supremacist extremism is one of the most "potent ideologies" driving acts of violence in the U.S. When he released the department's counterterrorism strategy, it outlined the ongoing threats from foreign terrorism and focused on domestic terror threats, particularly white supremacism.

An extreme right “boogaloo” follower was charged with murder of federal officer Dave Patrick Underwood. His murder was highlighted at the RNC but no mention of the killer and his ideology. Hmmm, wonder why.

Minneapolis police identified a man who smashed windows at an auto parts store specifically to inflame racial tensions has ties to an Aryan Cowboys white supremacist prison gang based mainly out of Minnesota and Kentucky. Of 40 arrests made in the Twin Cities one night, some were people linked to white supremacist groups and organized crime.

Of 175 people arrested in Kenosha, 102, including Kyle Rittenhouse, have addresses outside the city, according to police.

Sadly, I could go on and on, but you get it ... I hope. Makes me wonder where those “bystanders” with rifles and knives during the Spencer BLM protest live.

While “those people” (insert your demographic of choice) are the intellectually lazy and easy choice to blame, remember what Pogo said “We have met the enemy and he is us.” If not directly, then by default through denial and silence.

Wear a mask.

— Diane Smith, Spencer