The American Jewish World published an editorial on April 24, “Obama and the rise of the Jew-haters,”Â which looked at the Department of Homeland Security’s report titledÂ “Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment.”Â
The AJW editorial stated:
… the [DHS] report mentions the April 4 shooting death of three police officers in Pittsburgh, Penn., by a gunman who “reportedly was influenced by his racist ideology and belief in antigovernment conspiracy theories related to gun confiscations, citizen detention camps, and Jewish-controlled ‘one world government.’”
The April 7 DHS report, which was distributed to local law enforcement agencies across the country, warns that the trend to scapegoat Jews “is likely to accelerate if the economy is perceived to worsen.”
James W. von Brunn, the gunman who killed museum guard Stephen Tyrone Johns yesterday, was an 88-year-old anti-Semitic conspiracy nut, who previously served prison time for his attempt to kidnap board members of the Federal Reserve Bank in Washington, D.C.Â
Again, the April 24 AJW editorial pointed out:
The Homeland Security report correctly focuses on the latent menace posed by violent right-wing extremist groups, and by deranged lone wolf sociopaths acting on benighted ideological motives.
Under pressure from conservative groups, which complained that the DHS cast too broad a net in its alert about right-wing extremists, Janet Napolitano, the DHS secretary, apologized and withdrew the report.
Will Potter, a freelance journalist who has written extensively about federal terrorism legislation in cases involving property damage by animal liberation and environmental groups, wonders if the carnage at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum — along with the May 31 murder Dr. George Tiller, the ob-gyn in Wichita, Kansas —Â will be labeled as terrorism.Â
Potter notes that “the ‘radical’ animal rights and environmental movements have not harmed a single human being in their 30-plus years of existence. Yet they are the FBI’sÂ ‘number one domestic terrorism threat.’”
Getting back to the Jew-haters and doctor killers, the pace of these domestic terrorist incidents is picking up, and Joan Walsh, writing on Salon.com is concerned that violent right-wing lunatics are being whipped into a lather by the rantings of pundits on TV and the radio.
Walsh treads carefully in assessing blame, but comes down hard on O’Reilly:
If there’s a through-line between any of these acts of terrorism and the right-wing rhetoric that abets it, of course, it’s the one linkingÂ Bill O’Reilly to Scott Roeder, the man who murdered Tiller. O’Reilly more than demonized Tiller; night after night he called him a baby killer, compared him to the Nazis, and suggested that he must be stopped. Roeder stopped him, all right. If I were O’Reilly I’d feel terrible for putting a private figure in my public sights night after night, simply for doing his lawful job. But O’Reilly has no conscience, so he’s proud of it.
In her article, Walsh also mentions that Napolitano caved in on her agency’s prescient warning about extremist violence, after the “right-wing echo chamber went nuts about the report.”
In a statement released yesterday, the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas (JCRC) expressed its shock and grief over the attack at the Holocaust Museum. “This shooting is a stark and painful reminder that no place, not even a memorial of the Shoah [Holocaust], is a haven from violence and hatred,” said JCRC Executive Director Steve Hunegs.
Hunegs said that his agency urged “members of the Jewish community and our communal institutions to conduct business as usual while increasing vigilance and security.”
— Mordecai Specktor