[Editor's Note: Consider the blatant chicanery and lunacy revealed
in this article: The FBI, the new gestapo in America, obtains a trumped up
warrant to raid a man's home, loads his property into a U-Haul truck, and
charges him with "possible charges of trademark violation" based
on T-shirts found in his home! How outrageous can it get before the American
public wakes up to what's occurring in this country? Ted Gunderson, a 28 year
veteran with the 'old' FBI, just shakes his head in astonishment whenever
he reads of these flagrant assaults by the 'new' FBI upon American citizens.
"These people in no way resemble the FBI of my day" says Ted. "We
were proud and loyal Americans who were dedicated to protecting and serving
the citizens of the United States and above all, guaranteeing the rights of
citizens under the US Constitution and The Bill of Rights". It's also
interesting to note the convenient shift of culpability pretext by government
spokesmen from Al Queda over to 'domestic terrorists/hate groups' which now
apparently includes American patriots interested in self protection (militias),
environmental organizations, and animal rights groups of all things.
It's now standard practice for the burgeoning ranks of fascist-minded thugs
parading as government agents to accuse their victims of being Nazi
sympathizers, when they themselves behave like Nazis. If you want
to learn more about just how nutty these people are getting (and how much
more twisted they're going to get), read Animal Farm by
George Orwell...Ken Adachi]
By Maria Glod and Jerry Markon Washington Post Staff Writers
May 30, 2003
Tracking Hate Groups Aids Terrorism Fight Federal
Agents Turn to Domestic Front
Washington Post, May 19, 2003; Page B01
Armed federal agents slipped silently into place around Byron
Calvert Cecchini's Leesburg home. They pounded on the door, rousing the self-described
white supremacist from bed. For several hours, the agents scoured the house,
loading his computer, Rolodex and files into a Ryder truck. The FBI began
investigating Cecchini because of his ties to one of the largest neo-Nazi
groups in the United States. In an affidavit seeking a warrant for
the pre-dawn raid this year, an agent wrote that Cecchini had a "violent
criminal history" and probably owned weapons. Agents found
no weapons, but they found something they were looking for -- T-shirts
with a Nike swoosh logo that substitutes the word "Nazi" for Nike.
Cecchini is facing possible charges of trademark violations,
said law enforcement sources, who spoke on the condition that they not be
named. "You prosecute what you can prosecute," one law enforcement
source said. It is a tactic being used with increasing success nationwide
as authorities step up efforts to curb domestic hate and terror groups: prosecute
any illegal activity by known extremists and, at the same time, work to infiltrate
potentially dangerous groups to guard against future attacks. Even as dismantling
al Qaeda remains the clear priority of terrorism task forces, agents have
been ordered to be vigilant about domestic groups. "The focus on
international terrorism is obvious, but September 11th has made us examine
all security issues," a law enforcement official said. "You can't
make the number one goal preventing attacks against the U.S. and not look
at a danger that could be posed here at home." The terrorism task
forces are homing in on all groups, including militia movements and even environmental
and animal rights organizations.
But the efforts have had the greatest impact on neo-Nazi and
white supremacist groups. In recent months, prominent white supremacists have
been indicted in several states, including Pennsylvania, Georgia and Washington,
and news of their arrests has resulted in a frenzy of anti-government exchanges
on neo-Nazi and other racist Web sites. In Pennsylvania, an Aryan Nation member
who expressed anti-Semitic beliefs on the Internet in an open letter of support
to Saddam Hussein was indicted on weapons charges in March. And a leader of
the White Knights of Pennsylvania is accused of plotting to bomb abortion
clinics. "The government's efforts in investigating domestic terrorism
have stepped up since September 11th," said Mary Beth Buchanan, the U.S.
attorney in Pittsburgh who chairs Attorney General John D. Ashcroft's advisory
committee of U.S. attorneys. "We are taking every incident much more
seriously, and we are analyzing it more closely." Weapons charges also
were filed against a Washington state man with ties to the white supremacist
group Christian Identity and a Wisconsin man who came to the attention of
authorities when he e-mailed photos of himself holding an AK-47 while standing
in front of a flag with a swastika.
"The radical right from coast to coast is in near-hysteria
over the arrests," said Mark Potok, who tracks extremist groups for the
Southern Poverty Law Center. The White Revolution group postponed a February
meeting, explaining on its Web site that leaders believed the government was
"eager to use any pretext against white nationalists to arrest or raid
or detain us." On another Internet site, Edgar J. Steele, a lawyer who
has represented the Aryan Nation, wrote: "There is a roundup taking place
. . . how long before they get to you?" On his Web site, www.tightrope.cc,
Cecchini talks about the "persecution" of those who share his views.
"If any government thinks it can stop an idea whose time has come with
pre-dawn raids and lengthy prison sentences, they have miscalculated,"
he wrote. Cecchini, a former National Alliance member who broke with the group
and created Tightrope, acknowledged that his views are offensive to many.
He said, however, that he is not a danger to anyone and is "absolutely
not involved in anything illegal." "I don't mind being called a
racist or a Nazi," Cecchini said in an interview. "I'm not offended
if people don't like what I think." Tightrope's Web site, which is rife
with anti-Semitic and racist language, includes a "lynching section"
with graphic photos. In "healthier times," Cecchini wrote on the
site, rapists and killers were "almost sure to face the ruthless wrath
of a mob of enraged Aryan men both willing and able to inflict a horrible
death." On the Tightrope site, Cecchini compares nonwhites to the snakehead,
a predatory fish found in a Crofton pond last summer that threatened to wipe
out native species. "It's still legal to be a member of a group and associate
with whoever you want to associate with and have views that may be unpopular,"
Cecchini said in the interview. "This is still America." David Trainor,
an attorney for Chester Doles, a Georgia National Alliance member facing trial
on weapons charges, said he's concerned that his client was investigated because
of his affiliation with white supremacist groups. According to court records,
Doles, who has a prior conviction that bars him from owning firearms, was
arrested after an informant reported seeing him with weapons. "Is he
partly being prosecuted because of his membership in the National Alliance?
The answer is yes," Trainor said. "I think that the basis for going
after him is his words."
Law enforcement officials say that they are not trampling on
free speech rights but that they must keep close watch over groups or individuals
who advocate violence. "We make sure that we don't unnecessarily curb
an individual's right to exercise their free speech, but you have to listen
to what they say and watch what they do to see if they stepped over the line
into criminal activity," Buchanan said. Federal law enforcement officials
say fighting domestic terrorism has always been a priority, if somewhat less
visible in recent years amid the highly publicized war against al Qaeda and
other international terrorist groups.
In response to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, the number of FBI-led
joint terrorism task forces rose from 44 to 66. The Justice Department's
93 anti-terrorism task forces, run out of every U.S. attorney's office,
coordinate the effort and keep in touch with officials at Justice headquarters
in Washington. The result is a much larger number of people investigating
terrorism. More agents on the street means more domestic terrorism suspects
are scooped up, along with those suspected of aiding al Qaeda or other international
groups. "Even as we fight the war on international terrorism and work
to prevent another attack like September 11th," said Bryan Sierra, a
Justice Department spokesman, "the Department of Justice is also making
every effort to shut down hate groups and homegrown terrorists before they,
too, can act violently on their hatred." In a February 2002 statement
to a U.S. Senate committee, Dale L. Watson, then the FBI's chief of counterterrorism
and counterintelligence, named the National Alliance, World Church of the
Creator and Aryan Nation, among others, as groups that present a "continuing
Although federal agents use such tactics as electronic surveillance
and wiretapping to fight all forms of terrorism, there are differences in
how they confront the homegrown variety. Finding informants is easier, they
say, because there are no language and cultural barriers, such as those that
have hurt the government's efforts to infiltrate al Qaeda. According to court
records, FBI agents from Philadelphia recruited a confidential informant who
provided the details that led to the March indictment of David Wayne Hull.
Pennsylvania authorities said Hull is a member of White Knights of Pennsylvania
and has ties to the Ku Klux Klan. According to court documents, an informant
said Hull, who is charged with firearms violations, wanted to buy grenades
and spoke of a plan to bomb abortion clinics. Daniel Levitas, who wrote "The
Terrorist Next Door," a book about Timothy McVeigh, said right-wing extremist
groups have a record of carrying out violent acts. But in most cases, he said,
their "rhetoric is wildly disproportional" to any real violence.
Cecchini said he has committed no crimes and thinks the authorities were "intelligence
gathering." "I guess I'm out of step with the current age, but all
through history, a lot of the views I hold were mainstream. . . . Now we're
the wackos and the criminals," Cecchini said.
Metro researcher Bobbye Pratt contributed to this report.
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