Fake News Debunked: 'Secret Police' Who Arrested Portland Man in Viral Vid Part of Trump's New PACT Force
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You may recall a video that went viral last week showing camo-clad federal officers plucking a black-clad soy boy off the streets in Portland and putting him into a van before driving away.
Media reports about the incident portrayed the federal officers as stalking ‘peaceful protesters’ and then arresting them at will.
The Washington Post, for instance, described it this way:
Federal customs officials said Friday that their agents had detained a demonstrator in Portland, Ore., in a widely seen video circulating online that showed two men in apparent military garb taking a young man wearing all black into custody, defending the apprehension by describing the man as being suspected of attacking federal agents and property.
This defense came as federal authorities were under criticism for their tactics from elected officials, civil rights activists and demonstrators, including one in Portland who described being “terrified” during a similar encounter.
Federal officers detained Mark Pettibone, 29, not because they didn’t have anything else better to do and wanted to ‘terrorize’ Portland citizens, but because he was suspected of attacking federal officers and helping to deface and destroy a federal courthouse that’s been under nightly siege by Antifa and BLM brown shirts for months.
"I was terrified,” Pettibone told the Post. “It seemed like it was out of a horror/sci-fi, like a Philip K. Dick novel. It was like being preyed upon.”
You mean, like ‘preying on’ the federal officers holed up in the courthouse?
In any event, this was no random act by ‘out of control’ federal agents or, as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called them Friday, “Stormtroopers” – an overt reference to Nazi Germany and troops used to invade Poland and other countries at the start of World War II.
The detainment of Pettibone was undertaken by officers of a new federal task force formed via executive order signed last month by President Trump.
The task force has its roots in a June 26 executive order from President Donald Trump titled, “Protecting American Monuments, Memorials, and Statues and Combating Recent Criminal Activity,” a July 1 Department of Homeland Security news release said.
“DHS is answering the President’s call to use our law enforcement personnel across the country to protect our historic landmarks,” acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf said in a statement, noting that the agency had created the Protecting American Communities Task Force (PACT). “We won’t stand idly by while violent anarchists and rioters seek not only to vandalize and destroy the symbols of our nation, but to disrupt law and order and sow chaos in our communities."
Wolf added that the force will "conduct ongoing assessments of potential civil unrest or destruction and allocate resources to protect people and property.”
“This may involve potential surge activity to ensure the continuing protection of critical locations,” Wolf continued, a possible reference to out-of-control cities like Portland.
Citizens of Portland are also citizens of the United States and, as president, Trump has a duty to act to protect them and federal property.
Frankly, the formation of this force was long overdue. And frankly, it’s a good thing to put a little fear into anarchists.