The FBI Lumps Militia Members in Together with Conspiracy Theorists in Latest Unclassified Government Document
The FBI Counter Terrorism Division issued an intelligence bulletin titled “Militia Extremists Expand Target Sets To Include Muslims.” The announcement suggests “militia extremists” have now added Muslim institutions and associated religious buildings as main objectives, based on a “large body of source reporting.”
“A reliable source with good access to the information reported that a leader of a militia extremist group in the western United States expressed in early 2015, interest in training members for direct action against ISIS and associated ISIS locations.”
The federal document published that, “Militia extremists are expanding their target sets to include Muslims and Islamic religious institutions in the United States. This has resulted in increased violent rhetoric and plotting and has the potential to lead, over the long term, to additional harassment of or violence against Muslims by domestic extremists. The FBI makes these assessments with high confidence a on the basis of a large body of source reporting generated mainly since 2013. This information augments prior FBI analysis that established militia extremists target government personnel and law enforcement officers, perceived threats from abroad, and individuals or institutions that seek to constrain Second Amendment rights.”
The FBI concludes that increased targeting of Muslims is being fueled by two fundamental misconceptions that are described as “salient perceptions within militia extremism that contribute toward an anti-Muslim bias”:
(U//FOUO) Islam represents a foreign threat, equivalent to those which emanate from illegal immigration or international terrorism.
(U//FOUO) The President of the United States not only sympathizes with Islamic extremists but directs US Government policy to align with their goals.
These misconceptions are often held by “adherents of a militia ideology who seek validation of anti-government conspiracy theories” including that the U.S. government allows “allows the group Muslims of the Americas (aka Jamaat ul Fuqra, hereinafter referred to as MOA) to operate terrorist training camps at dozens of locations across the United States.” Citing videos and articles from the Christian Action Network, Pamela Geller and World Net Daily, the bulletin says that similar claims “periodically surge” following acts of Islamic-inspired terrorism. The bulletin also cites a restricted 2006 report published by Public Intelligence from the Regional Organized Crime Information Center that “identified the location of seven MOA ‘training compounds’” within the U.S.
The FBI ultimately states that the “incorporation of anti-Islamic attitudes” serves to “dilute core militia ideological beliefs” and that signs of this “fragmenting ideology” could include “a noticeable reduction in rhetoric pertaining to the traditional core concern over Second Amendment rights” as well as the “addition of new types of targets, and actions or decisions made based upon current events rather than ideology.”
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