Militia Within the Military

Via the Army Times, carrying an Associated Press story, we have reports of a very frightening arrest at an army base in Georgia:

Four Army soldiers based in southeast Georgia killed a former comrade and his girlfriend to protect an anarchist militia group they formed that stockpiled assault weapons and plotted a range of anti-government attacks, prosecutors told a judge Monday.

Prosecutors in rural Long County, near the sprawling Army post Fort Stewart, said the militia group composed of active duty and former U.S. military members spent at least $87,000 buying guns and bomb components and was serious enough to kill two people — former soldier Michael Roark and his 17-year-old girlfriend, Tiffany York — by shooting them in the woods last December in order to keep its plans secret.

Information is still trickling in, but $87,000 seems like a pretty serious amount of firepower. Thankfully, the prosecutor is willing to frame the story properly:

“This domestic terrorist organization did not simply plan and talk,” prosecutor Isabel Pauley told a Superior Court judge. “Prior to the murders in this case, the group took action. Evidence shows the group possessed the knowledge, means and motive to carry out their plans.”

If the allegations are accurate, “domestic terrorist organization” is the proper phrase. Let’s not quibble about the “terrorist” label because they don’t appear to be Muslim.

The group’s plans seem grandiose:

The prosecutor said the militia group had big plans. It plotted to take over Fort Stewart by seizing its ammunition control point and talked of bombing the Forsyth Park fountain in nearby Savannah, she said. In Washington state, she added, the group plotted to bomb a dam and poison the state’s apple crop. Ultimately, prosecutors said, the militia’s goal was to overthrow the government and assassinate the president.

It’s hard not to read this story in light of a recent Reuters article about the presence of white supremacist groups in the military:

White supremacists, neo-Nazis and skinhead groups encourage followers to enlist in the Army and Marine Corps to acquire the skills to overthrow what some call the ZOG – the Zionist Occupation Government. Get in, get trained and get out to brace for the coming race war.

If this scenario seems like fantasy or bluster, civil rights organizations take it as deadly serious, especially given recent events. Former U.S. Army soldier Wade Page opened fire with a 9mm handgun at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin on Aug. 5, murdering six people and critically wounding three before killing himself during a shootout with police.

Some of this may turn out to be so much hot air coming from the prosecutor. However, if most of this is accurate then it bears out the DHS assessment (PDF) from back in 2009, which was dismissed by a number of right wingers as a political attack on them.

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