When California prosecutors finally started charging violent Antifa militants last week, arresting 10 of them for assualt, it was hoped that the scales might fall of the FBI’s eyes and it would wake up to the domestic terror network that is Antifa.
Unfortunately, that’s not the case, at least at the highest levels. FBI Director Wray, despite the arrests and Antifa’s history of violent action throughout the US, and especially on the West Coast, continues to insist that Antifa is only an “ideology,” not an “organization.”
That comment first came last year, when Director Wray testified before the House Homeland Security Committee and said that Antifa is “not a group or an organization. It’s a movement or an ideology.”
That flies in the face of facts, as many Antifa cells are quite organized, but it’s his story and he’s sticking to it, even as the evidence against his “not a group or an organization” theory mounts. As Just the News reports:
Those arraigned in San Diego Superior Court were part of a group arrested last Thursday in raids conducted by police officers and sheriff’s deputies across Southern California. The defendants “are self-identified to be affiliated with Anti-fascists or Antifa,” according to the criminal complaint.
[…] “I was very heartened to see law enforcement take steps to make these arrests,” said Kyle Shideler, director and senior analyst for homeland security and counterterrorism at the Center for Security Policy. “Hopefully it will be the start of a trend in state and local law enforcement to reject the inaccurate notion promoted by the FBI that Antifa lacks organization, network, or structure.”
And those Antifa militants weren’t just arrested for blindly acting on their ideology in an unprepared, unsophisticated way, as Wray’s comments would imply.
Rather, they were part of a conspiracy that planned to disrupt a conservative rally and procured the tools necessary to do so.
That level of organization means that the FBI needs to take the threat more seriously and deal with Antifa as an organization, not a loose collection of disaffected individuals. Again according to Just the News, which cites the comments of long-time FBI counter-terrorism specialist:
“With members in every one of the 50 states,” Gritz said, antifa utilizes “sophisticated communication methods to plan their operations, just like other terrorist organizations. Using the ‘it’s an ideology’ excuse gives politicians and the media, as well as the FBI director, the confusing semantics to describe only the why of what they do as opposed to who they are … Wray confuses the reason behind Antifa’s terrorist violence with who they actually are.”
So, while leftists might continue to describe Antifa as a “boogeyman” and Director Wray might continue to insist that it’s just an “ideology,” not an “organization,” those insistences fly in the face of the available facts about how Antifa operates and causes chaos, all of which point to Antifa being a sophisticated terror organization operating within America.