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DHS Says White Supremacy is Country's Biggest Threat

4 min read

DHS is drafting its annual threat assessment report, and Politico got hold of the draft: DHS draft document: White supremacists are greatest terror threat

White supremacists present the gravest terror threat to the United States, according to a draft report from the Department of Homeland Security.

Two later draft versions of the same document — all of which were reviewed by POLITICO — describe the threat from white supremacists in slightly different language. But all three drafts describe the threat from white supremacists as the deadliest domestic terror threat facing the U.S., listed above the immediate danger from foreign terrorist groups.

Trump’s current favorite  boogeyman, Antifa, is not a threat:

None of the drafts POLITICO reviewed referred to a threat from Antifa, the loose cohort of militant left-leaning agitators who senior Trump administration officials have described as domestic terrorists. Two of the drafts refer to extremists trying to exploit the “social grievances” driving lawful protests.

Lawfare editor-in-chief Ben Wittes was the first to post these drafts, which Politico then dug into. Since Politico released its story on Friday of Labor Day weekend, it took a while for the world to notice. CNN picked it up this morning: White supremacy is 'most lethal threat' to the US, DHS draft assessment says

[Wittes] told CNN that “the most striking thing is in this political atmosphere; they have said what they said” — that white supremacist violence is the threat they are most concerned about.

“I don't want to criticize them when that language is there. That said it is somewhat different in the first draft than the subsequent two and I do think the nature of the change is notable as a reflection of the political pressure they are under,” he said.

The Hill reports that the language was  watered down, but only slightly:
The next two drafts reportedly allude to “Domestic Violent Extremists,” or DVEs, instead of “white supremacist extremists” as “the most persistent and lethal threat,” though all three read, “Among DVEs, we judge that white supremacist extremists (WSEs) will remain the most persistent and lethal threat in the Homeland through 2021.”


In 2019, DHS officially assessed white supremacy as being as much a threat to the US as Islamic militants: DHS: Domestic terrorism, particularly white-supremacist violence, as big a threat as ISIS, al-Qaeda. Now they want to move it to the top threat.
But the real top threat is the white supremacist in the Oval Office. And he’s getting more obvious about it, as Eugene Robinson makes clear: Trump is shouting his racism. He must be stopped.

Trump was returning to a familiar playbook. He was relying on the chaos of the protests to produce the kind of racist backlash that he had ridden to the presidency in 2016. Trump had blamed the 2014 protests in Ferguson, Missouri—a response to the shooting of Michael Brown by a police officer—on Barack Obama’s indulgence of criminality. “With our weak leadership in Washington, you can expect Ferguson type riots and looting in other places,” Trump predicted in 2014. As president, he saw such uprisings as deliverance.

Then something happened that Trump did not foresee. It didn’t work.

(Most of The Atlantic article is about the history of systemic racism, all well worth reading.)

It’s not that we need another reason to get rid of Trump and the GOP, but let’s make no mistake: this election is about the soul of the country. Movement ahead toward racial equality or backwards to white supremacy. It will be an ugly fight, but one we absolutely have to win.
Side note: Workmen have been pouring concrete for a new sidewalk in our neighborhood in San Francisco. Someone (we suspect the workmen) drew TRUMP twice and WHITE POWER at least once in the wet concrete. The city is pushing the contractor to fix it, of course.
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