FBI REPORT CREATES FICTIONAL GROUP, CALLS BLACKS TERRORISTS
You may not have heard, but the FBI seems to think black people are terrorists. Last August their counterterrorism division published a report that is outrageous. The FBI report warned law enforcement across the US of a new terrorist threat. And the FBI calls that threat “Black Identity Extremism.” The problem is, there is no such thing. The FBI appears to have simply made it up. What is black identity, anyway? How do you identify extremists?
REPORT QUICKLY TAKEN DOWN AFTER PUBLICATION. WHY?
This only came to light when the Foreign Policy reported on the memo recently. But there is no such thing as a “Black Identity Extremist” movement. Foreign Policy posted the actual FBI document briefly with its reporting. But they took it down quickly. Why could that be? In that document the FBI said things like “it is very likely some BIEs are influenced by a mix of anti-authoritarian, Moorish sovereign citizen ideology, and BIE ideology.”
“MOORISH CITIZEN IDEOLOGY” MEANS BLACK AMERICANS, BLACK IDENTITY
What the hell is Moorish sovereign citizen ideology? Does that mean black people who think they have civil rights in the United States? So what does that mean? Who is in this movement? Presumably BIE is comprised of black people. Who is in the movement? No one knows, but they have black identity. Who is the leadership of BIE? Again, no one seems to know. But they must be African Americans. Or they are Moorish citizens. Is there a difference to the FBI? The FBI calls threats like they imagine them to be, or so it seems.
FBI LINKS POLICE SHOOTING BLACKS WITH TERRORIST BLACK RESPONSE
The report considered it “very likely” that violence against police officers was a real threat. The report talks about the police killing of the teenage Michael Brown in Missouri. It also talks about the grand jury decision not to indict the officer who pulled the trigger. The FBI thinks the two would cause a violent backlash. The FBI explained the two to have “spurred an increase in premeditated, retaliatory lethal violence against law enforcement and will very likely serve as justification for such violence.”
THE MORE BLACKS POLICE KILL, THE MORE BLACK TERRORISTS THERE ARE
So what does that really mean? Angry black people will attack the police? Angry black people are extremists? That makes them a terror threat? That’s appalling and offensive. But the FBI report dug a deeper hole. It also said “[I]ncidents of alleged police abuse against African Americans since then have continued to feed the resurgence in ideologically motivated, violent criminal activity within the BIE movement.”
FBI TELLS POLICE TO FEAR BLACK PEOPLE, WHAT COULD GO WRONG?
The 12 page report included notes and citations describing six examples of premeditated violence against police by African Americans that were motivated by “identity extremism.” Does anyone think police need to be more afraid of black people? That seems to be the biggest problem every time a white cop kills a black person. So thanks FBI, you just made everyone less safe. You’re also generically calling black people terrorists. Because angry people are now extremists.
FBI: BLACK EXTREMISTS ARE JUST ANGRY BLACK PEOPLE
So, according to the FBI, they have identified a new terror threat. And that threat is simply identified as angry black people. It doesn’t explain any organization, leadership or membership. Just be afraid of black people who are angry at perceived police brutality. One former FBI agent, Michael German, is now a Brennan Center Fellow. His description seems particularly scathing, in one line. “Basically, it’s black people who scare them.” So be warned, the FBI now labels anyone they may fear as terrorists. But especially black people in the United States.
NEW TERROR THREAT? OR AN OLD “TERROR” THREAT?
Let’s all remember some ugly history about black identity here. The FBI thought Martin Luther King was a terrorist. They also thought Malcolm X was a terrorist. There was also that group called the Black Panthers. No, they weren’t terrorists, either. We have a long, long history of calling black people terrorists. Clearly, nothing has changed. Jeff Sessions is continuing our sordid, national tradition. But at least recent events make one thing clear. We’ve never been post-racial, and the Civil Rights Movement needs to march on.