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Volsky writes: “A married couple who reportedly bragged about their ties to white supremacists killed two police officers, another person, and ultimately themselves in Las Vegas on Sunday.”

 (photo: AP)
(photo: AP)


Las Vegas Shooters Allegedly Spent Time at Bundy Ranch, Embraced White Supremacy

By Igor Volsky, ThinkProgress

09 June 14

 

married couple who reportedly bragged about their ties to white supremacists killed two police officers, another person, and ultimately themselves in Las Vegas on Sunday. According to neighbors, the duo — whose names have not been publicly released — “had a reputation for spouting racist, anti-government views, bragging about their gun collection and boasting that they’d spent time at Cliven Bundy’s ranch during a recent standoff there between armed militia members and federal government agents.”

The incident comes just days after the Department of Justice announced that it was relaunching a law enforcement group to investigate domestic terrorism. The so-called “Domestic Terrorism Executive Committee” was formed after the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995, but was disbanded in the aftermath of the September 11th attacks.

“We face an escalating danger from self-radicalized individuals within our own borders,” Holder said in a video announcing the re-formation of the group. “Now — as the nature of the threat we face evolves to include the possibility of individual radicalization via the Internet — it is critical that we return our focus to potential extremists here at home.”

Though the group was formed in response to criticism that the FBI did not to share information with local law enforcement agencies about the radicalization of Tamerlan Tsarnaev, one of the brothers allegedly responsible for the Boston Marathon bombing, DOJ cited a Congressional Research Service report showing that “domestic terrorists were responsible for more than two dozen incidents in the U.S. since 9/11.” A count by the New America Foundation found that “right wing extremists have killed 34 people in the United States for political reasons” between 9/11 and April of 2014.

Some of that violence is fueled by groups and individuals devoted to white supremacist ideology, a movement that is “largely driven by the demographic ‘browning’ of the population and predictions of the loss of a white majority in the next 30 years.” The Southern Poverty Law Center notes that these groups experienced “four years of spectacular growth” in the aftermath of the 2008 presidential election and the “nearly simultaneous collapse of the economy,” but saw its “first significant decrease in 2013.”

The Vegas shooting comes in the aftermath of a recent anti-Jewish fueled shooting spree in Kansas City, Kansas in April, the killing of six Sikhs in a Wisconsin temple in 2012 and the murder of a guard at the U.S. Holocaust Museum in 2009.

The two shooters in Las Vegas allegedly shouted “this is the start of a revolution” before opening fire at the two officers — Alyn Beck and Igor Soldo — and draped their bodies with a “don’t tread on me” Revolution-era flag. Police later found swastika symbols in the shooters’ home.

Update

The shooters have been identified as Jerad and Amanda Miller. A NBC affiliate has this video of Jared Miller speaking to reporters at the Bundy ranch in April: “I feel sorry for any federal agents that want to come in here and try to push us around or something like that. I really don’t want violence toward them, but if they’re going to come bring violence to us, well if that’s the language they want to speak, we’ll learn it,” he says. Watch 45 seconds in:

Update

NBC news is reporting that the Millers “left their apartment with a shopping cart full of weapons” and that Jerad told a neighbor, “We gotta do what we gotta do.” His wife added, “I am so sorry.” Another neighbor claimed the Millers “wanted to overthrow the government and President Barack Obama and kill police officers.”


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-11 # wolf 2014-06-09 21:03
A story on the Guardian (http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jun/09/las-vegas-shooting-false-flag-government-infowars) reveals that the pair did feel mistreated by police, and even made statements such as they would rather die in a firefight than to sit in jail.

They believed that the probation Jared was on was unfair. It likely was.

I challenge people to dig deep into this story, to not trust that the media will give you an accurate window into their lives, and their minds and the reasons why they felt they had to do what they did.

Think about suicide, about how final that is, how important a decision that is. What would drive someone to kill and then kill each other?

Were these people treated fairly by our law enforcement and justice system? Did they react irrationally? Or did they react in the only way they knew how to an irrational and corrupt system?

Which is more likely; that dozens of people are suddenly become so mentally ill and violent for no particular reason and are shooting innocent civilians and law enforcement personnel; or that we are living in a system with some serious problems, that our freedoms are not what we are led to believe they are, that our system is far more corrupt than we are told, and that people are simply reacting to having their lives and livelihoods destroyed by that corrupt system?

The media will not answer that question for you, at least not accurately. The media is part of the problem, after all.
 
 
+10 # Nominae 2014-06-09 23:19
From the article:

the Millers “left their apartment with a shopping cart full of weapons” and that Jerad told a neighbor, “We gotta do what we gotta do.”

A shopping cart full of weapons ..... now *there* are some good ol' red-blooded 'Merukin supporters of open carry laws ...

And no one was authorized to do a damned thing about that ? Apparently not.

So much for "what happens in Vegas - stays in Vegas" I guess.

Open carry nuts in Texas must be ecstatic.
 
 
+3 # user23 2014-06-10 03:50
They're joyfully screaming "false flag" right now but once they've screamed themselves hoarse they'll start salivating at all the possibilities.
 
 
-13 # lnason@umassd.edu 2014-06-10 05:48
These two shooters were quite clearly insane.

That said, this article tries to draw a connection between them and the Bundy Ranch crowd, pretending that there is a vast right wing racist conspiracy to commit terrorist acts.

But this theory fails to conform to several unmentioned facts.

1. The couple was kicked off the Bundy Ranch since the Bundy's recognized that they were insane.

2. Terrorism, by definition, involves harming innocent civilians and, crazy as they were, even these shooters did not seek to harm civilians.

3. The Bundy Ranch group certainly did not harm civilians or official police and conducted a fully peaceful protest.

4. Antagonism toward the growth of government power and racism are two different issues and should not be conflated. Many, if not most, racists actually advocate for big government a la Nazi Germany which had an all-powerful state. Many, if not most, anti-big government types deplore racism and clearly see that big government has always been the enforcer of racist preferences from slavery through Jim Crow.

According to leftie wonk Nate Silver's recent research, Republicans are not much more likely than Democrats to racist. Both political parties have small minorities of racist supporters and we should guard against cherry-picking our data in order to obscure this fact.

Lee Nason
New Bedford, Massachusetts
 
 
+4 # bmiluski 2014-06-10 08:55
Please explain Inason@umassd.edu the following:
If the shooters didn't want to harm civilians then why did they go and shoot up a WAL-MART. Was there a police station in that particular store?

Since when is pointing guns at government officials considered a fully peaceful protest. OCCUPY was a fully peaceful protest....beca use no one had a gun. Do you see the difference?
 
 
+2 # dkonstruction 2014-06-10 09:25
Quoting lnason@umassd.edu:

4. Antagonism toward the growth of government power and racism are two different issues and should not be conflated. Many, if not most, racists actually advocate for big government a la Nazi Germany which had an all-powerful state. Many, if not most, anti-big government types deplore racism and clearly see that big government has always been the enforcer of racist preferences from slavery through Jim Crow.


Lee Nason
New Bedford, Massachusetts


Sorry, but the anti-big gov't types are the same as those touting "states rights" which was the cover for both slavery and later Jim Crow. The argument was that the "big" gov't does not have the right to tell individuals whether or not they can own slaves or who they have to serve in their restaurant, hotel etc.

The Civil Rights bills were "big gov't" and they were fought tooth and nail by the anti-"big gov't" states rights folks.

So, to say that most "anti-big government types deplore racism" is to blind oneself to the ways in which some use "big gov't" as a straw man to enable discrimination at the local level. A good example today would be Rand Paul's opposition to the provisions in the Civil Rights Act that prohibit business owners from discriminating on the basis of race.
 
 
+1 # bmiluski 2014-06-10 14:01
And how about Paul Ryan decrying big gov't and social security but not having any problems accepting SS to get a college degree.
Or all of those people squeeling about big gov't yet not having any problems cashing their gov't checks.
 
 
0 # wolf 2014-06-10 19:13
"These two shooters were quite clearly insane."

Could you please provide your credentials or expertise in making a diagnosis; supporting evidence for your diagnosis including a statement related to your examination of Jarad Miller and his wife; and any further corroborating evidence you can provide so that we can understand how you are able to make such a diagnosis.

It would also be convenient if you could define "insane," as I can't seem to find it in the DSM anywhere.

Finally, if you are an examining psychologist or psychiatrist, could you please explain how you are able to communicate your diagnosis without violating the privilege of your patients. I mean, I realize they are dead; but that is not sufficient grounds to violate HIPPA privacy rules.


Or, consider restating your view.


Allow me to help: "insanity" as you use, is more accurately described as irrational behavior. Was it rational for these two people to commit murder, then suicide?

We don't know, because we don't understand their perspective. Rationality is solely based on perspective, except for those who reason at Universal Ethics or higher.

And while it may seem to you and I that this was clearly irrational; again, we do not understand their perspective.

The only real way to proceed in cases like this is to determine what their reasoning was based on. This is why understanding moral reasoning is so damn important.
 
 
0 # user23 2014-06-13 20:33
You don't need a credential to state that anyone who kills cops and them commits suicide is completely, balls-to-the-wa ll, crazy.

I don't need to know their "perspective" to know that they were evil, murderous tea bags. Instead, what I have is called "evidence". I'm sure you don't even know what evidence is. But they did drape those dead cops in the tea-bag revolution flag, the yellow (cowardly) Gadsden flag. You know, the "don't tread on me" flag. The one that tea bags salute when they're taking a crap on the one that I saluted as a soldier.
 
 
0 # user23 2014-06-13 20:42
#2--Your definition of terrorism is lacking. Civilians don't necessarily need to be the victims of terrorism for the act to be defined as terrorism. A better definition of terrorism is violence committed in an attempt to cause political change.

Also, if they didn't seek to harm civilians, then how come that "good guy with a gun" that tried to confront the husband was blindsided and murdered by the wife? She clearly had no qualms about harming civilians.

The Bundy ranch did NOT seek a "peaceful" protest. They baited the govt to dare defy them. They threatened govt agents with dangerous weapons. There is photographic evidence of one of your "peaceful" protestors taking up a sniper position and aiming his sites on BLM employees. They were primed and ready for a confrontation. One of them even stated on camera that they were putting their wives in front so that if a gun battle were started their wives would die which would ultimately make the govt look bad. They planned on baiting the govt into shooting their wives. That isn't a peaceful protest. A peaceful protest is one in which the protester puts a flower in the gun-barrel of the govt troops. Not one in which the protester points a gun at the govt troops. Just because they didn't actually murder anyone does not mean that their intent was a peaceful one.

Another thing: racists want small govt because it is big govt that protects minorities from discrimination. Derp.
 
 
+4 # Buddha 2014-06-10 10:01
When a Muslim chants "Allahu Akbar" and kills people, he's a "terrorist", and it is an indictment on all of Islam. When a white person with a Far Right Anti-Government White Supremacist belief system kills Americans, then they are "insane" and the GOP which keeps stirring up that Anti-Government Anti-minority hate for political gain bears no responsibility. Got it. Haven't we seen this movie before with the Oklahoma City bombing?
 
 
-3 # RMDC 2014-06-10 12:01
The Bundy Ranch is fast becoming the Branch Davidian Temple at Waco of the 21st century. They are all waiting for the final apocalypse when the FBI, Special Forces, ATF, and the rest of the National Security forces including mercenaries descend on them and rapture all of them to hell. They will have been proven correct in their accusations against the government.
 
 
+1 # bmiluski 2014-06-10 14:04
And what would be those accusations? Bundy has done so much ranting it's hard to follow his thought process other than his entitlement to everything he wants.
 
 
0 # wolf 2014-06-10 19:18
Please don't make comparisons when you don't understand the bases for which you are drawing your comparisons.

The Waco incident had precious little to do with any of the thoughts, attitudes, or beliefs of the Bundy Ranch bunch. Those are teaparty extremists who exist in a world ruled by a very limited subset of understanding of the world around them. Hide the whole truth from people and carefully feed them what you want them to believe, and you can have them believing anything.

So perhaps in that regard, you do have a connection between Waco and Bundy - as the Tea Party could easily be considered a cult phenomenon. But ideals, actions, and the behavior of the group and the government in each case are so vastly different that a comparison of the nature you suggest is pure folly.

Further, the Branch Davidians did nothing wrong. Bundy stole from the American people by grazing on public lands, destructively no less, for 20 years without paying a penny (and a $14/head/season times some 2000 head times 20 years is quite a bit of theft from the American people.

Bundy stole from you and I. David Koresh stole nothing.
 
 
0 # user23 2014-06-13 20:45
George Washington would have brought a huge army in to subdue the Bundy Ranch people. If Obama did that, he'd probably get impeached.

Food for thought.
 

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