Sunday, June 21, 2015

Implications of FBI “Not Terrorism” Position

FBI Director James Comey is stating that according to his national policing agency the heinous act of the Charleston Church killer Dylann Roof was not an act of terrorism: 

He states:
“Terrorism is act of violence done or threatens to in order to try to influence a public body or citizenry so it’s more of a political act and again based on what I know so more I don’t see it as a political act.”

The following is the generally accepted government definition of terrorism:
“The unlawful use of force or violence against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a government, the civilian population, or any segment thereof in furtherance of political or social objectives.”

This statement from the FBI Director, comes out just as reports are revealed across the news services detailing the racist manifesto, including a myriad of politically racist goals and aims of the racist killer Roof:
Roof has reportedly admitted that he was intending to ignite a race war.  He told one of his victims that he was letting her live so she can pass a message on to the world.  He told her: “'I have to do it. . . . you're taking over our country. And you have to go.”

So even though he openly expressed his racist goals to one of the victims that survived – clearly an “unlawful use of force against  persons”, an attempt to “coerce the civilian population, or any segment there of,” in this case the entire Black population of the USA, “in furtherance of political or social objectives (‘you have to go.)” - not terrorism? What is this head G-man thinking?

When an FBI Director says "It's not terrorism" - it is not just some Facebook user ranting in comments under a link - it is a top level law enforcement official that reports to the Director of National Intelligence who reports directly to the president staking out an official position of the national police force that defines the policies, resource allocation and direction of the investigations that will move forward.

There is no doubt in my mind that the FBI’s prepared statements were vetted with his boss, Director of Intelligence James R. Clapper who in turn vetted it with President Obama himself.  There are clearly strategic and legal reasons why the US government and the Obama Administration, through the FBI Director, is taking this position.  I would suggest the following are some of the reasons:
1. Admitting that it is terrorism points out the failure of the FBI of preventing this heinous act with all of the allocated counter terrorism resources.   It would be admitting total and abject failure of the FBI and the Obama Administration’s focus on the “war on terror.”  With all the billions expended and agencies amassed, all the weaponry and the war making, all the draconian NSA spying – they could not find this killer’s website where he was openly planning a massacre.  Admitting that this was an act of terror would be a tacit admission of total failure of the war on terror.
3. The FBI is likely utilizing the white supremacy networks for various operations and any counter terrorism investigation into the networks would reveal the FBI hand in the infiltration, manipulation and likely criminal acts.  Channeling an investigation into terror potential of the white racist networks would possibly reveal an FBI hand in the creation and promotion of such organizations and possibly in encouraging violence by them,

Clearly the actions of this racist killer affects the Black citizenry by striking mortal fear in each and every one that this can happen at any time - even at, during or after a religious service or study in the supposed sanctuary of one's church and reintroduces the understandable distrust that Black people have of white men and women. It's affect is profound and pervasive and for someone in this national position of leadership to stake out this position demonstrates that the US clearly has no intention of rooting out this domestic terrorist threat against the Black population of this nation.

That is why the best response we have is to continue to build and organize the "Black Lives Matter" movement.

Recent article on how police impunity might have contributed to this act of terror:

Meanwhile let's continue to build the Million People's March Against Police Brutality - it is clear the FBI is not going to stop the racist killings by police either:

The following are some of the comments coming in from social networking on these talking points:

" Racist terror is the mainstay of white supremacy and colonialism/capitalism. "Terrorism" is a political propaganda term reserved for anti-imperial violence and is never used to refer to either state or racist/right terror directed against people of color. The media are simply corporate controlled mechanisms for disseminating propaganda, salted with a few op eds to cover the odor." offers Michael Novick, editor at Turning the Tide: Journal of Anti-Racist Action.

"If this heinous act doesn't fit the current legal definition of 'domestic terrorism' then the law needs to be changed! This guy committed this act with the intention to not only hurt but strike fear into the hearts of Americans, especially black Americans, so I can't think of any label more fitting than terrorism," states Michelle Dubell a Camden, NJ area activist.

“The head of the fbi should know what terrorism is and isn't. he heads a terrorist organization himself.” From Emma Rosenthal, an activist from the west coast.

"Of course it was terrorism. As is Obama's drone program. Textbook terrorism, both cases, individual and state terror,"  states Nsumi Jerzy-Kulczycki of NYC.

One activist begged to differ with this comment:
"The FBI defines terrorism as "The unlawful use of force and violence against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a government, the civilian population, or any segment thereof, in furtherance of political or social objectives." What political or social objectives were furthered by this lone massacre that has no support?"

Responding to that critique:

Saying it has no support - is not the point - and an unproven supposition any way. It clearly coerced the Black population which is now fearsome of additional attacks, angered, frustrated. Are some in the Black communities considering a physical response? Very possible which would move toward the killer's goal of race war.

Just because there has been a couple of blog articles with a few quotes from white supremacists bemoaning the attack - that does not represent an exhaustive probe into the white supremacist psyche and prove that there are no other killer wannabe's who - like Roof - are prone toward a similar attack. Certainly there is no proof whatsoever that there is no support - only a couple of blog articles about some right wing quotes crtiical of Roof's action.

Even that so many politicians are making racist remarks about the Confed flag and about this attack not being racially motivated is a political result of the attack - pointing up to its success in further generating racism - and I would say one step further - the FBI refusing to use counter terrorism resources (which is what the director's statement amounts to ) to investigate the action and the white supremacist networks is itself a racist result consistent with the racist goals of the action.

And now this - apparently Roof's message is gaining some political support:  .

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