Podcast — all the domestic extremism we’re not talking about
by MATTHEW GAULT
Domestic terrorism didn’t start or end with Timothy McVeigh. He killed 168 people and wounded more than 680 others by detonating a fertilizer bomb in front of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City on April 19, 1995.
America is a complicated country with millions of people and thousands of ideologies. We fight in the courtroom, the ballot box, on T.V., across social media and in the streets. Sometimes, these conflicts turn violent.
This week on War College, domestic extremism expert J.J. MacNab walks us through the current state of America’s militia and domestic terror movements. According to MacNab, the modern militia movement almost disappeared in 1995 after McVeigh assaulted Oklahoma City.
The toll was just too high for many extreme patriots and the authorities cracked down. But the movements have grown again. Gun sales are up and only three percent of Americans are buying. Militias are back, forming around people who claim the federal government is holding land illegally and collecting fees and taxes it has no right to.
But the phenomenon goes beyond the famous Bundy family and armed militias. Sovereign citizens believe only they have properly interpreted the constitution. Tax protesters think the 16th Amendment is a sham. Racial separatists want to keep their bloodline pure. Radical sheriffs rule their counties like private kingdoms.
Some are violent, some are elected officials and some just pretend to be. This week’s War College looks into just how dangerous these groups are.