Oklahoma City threat legacy: there are no stochastic lone wolves
Other than Trump’s deliberate mass-casualty response to COVID-19, there was an earlier event that had similar malevolence.
This is not about “antifa” as a threat, rather it is the continuing, intergenerational threat of right-wing domestic terror, made more possible by Trump’s election and not triggered by isolated individuals.
The problem here is that we still have to explain “the Oklahoma City bombing (1995)”. We're talking about the largest deliberate mass casualty on American soil between Pearl Harbor and 9/11, but most Americans don't know what it was (1)
(2) Most Americans don't know the Oklahoma City bombing was the work of a wide-ranging social movement–the white power movement–that included men and women, people in all parts of the country.(3) But it was, and not just the work of one man. The question isn't about how many wannabe McVeighs are out there, but about the durability of the movement-(4) and even more, about the failure of our institutions and public discourse in naming and confronting the white power movement, which is now decades, if not generations, old.(5) But yes, experts across the board are predicting mass violence. I add my concerns to that chorus.(6) AMA
(1a) Okay, so the white power movement (klan, neo-nazi and other groups) started in 1983/84 to use a series of code word-accessed computer message boards called Liberty Net. This was before the internet proper(2a? 1b? the sequel continues) We know these message boards were important because white power groups went to a lot of trouble to distribute millions of stolen dollars to groups all around the country to buy Apple “minicomputers”(1c) And then another activist would travel around, teaching all these groups how to use the computers and their message boards. These weren't all tech-saavy groups–some had no tech except the minicomputer and homemade munitions (but like no clocks or electricity)(1d) Now, what did they post on Liberty Net, the computer boards? Assassination lists and ideological tracts, yes. But they ALSO posted personal ads and other social materials. They were using social network activism (via the early internet) decades before Facebook(1e) the irony of posting this as a thread on Twitter is not lost on me