On August 9, “The FBI shot and killed a Utah man who allegedly made online threats to kill President Joe Biden and New York prosecutor Alvin Bragg.” In establishment media reports on the FBI action, “allegedly” gets a workout.
The FBI shot dead Craig Robertson, a 74-year-old woodworker who had allegedly threatened other politicians, including Gavin Newsom and just about every Democrat except Jimmy Carter. Reports on the shooting did not include original-source documentation of the alleged threats.
According to NBC, the FBI received a tip from “a social media company” pertaining to a user called @winston4eagles. The FBI believed the person with that user name to be Robertson. He allegedly told the FBI to get a warrant and they showed up at his house in force in the early hours of August 9.
Video of the engagement does not reveal whether Robertson was armed or fired shots before the FBI shot him dead. The FBI claims Robertson brandished a .357 revolver but it was “unclear if Robertson fired the weapon.” This was hardly the only unusual aspect of the killing.
Threats to the president of the United States are normally handled by the Secret Service. The Service told reporters the action against Robertson was an “FBI-led effort.” As it happens, deployment of deadly force is longstanding FBI practice.
This month marks 31 years since the FBI deployed massive military force against a single family. For choosing to live in rural Idaho, U.S. Army veteran Randy Weaver and his family were smeared as “white separatists.”
In the Ruby Ridge siege of 1992, brought on by an ATF entrapment scheme, the FBI deployed some 400 heavily armed agents, helicopters, and armored personnel carriers against Weaver and his family. The rules of engagement allowed deadly force against any family member seen with a firearm, but in effect it was shoot on sight.
On August 21, 1992 federal marshals deploying 9mm submachineguns shot dead Weaver’s son Samuel, only 14 years old and not wanted for any crime. On August 22, 1992, FBI sniper Lon Horiuchi shot dead Randy’s wife Vicki Weaver as she held holding infant daughter. Vicki Weaver was unarmed, not under arrest, and not wanted for any crime. Snipers are trained carefully “to acquire” the target, so there is little chance the shooting was accidental.
At the time of the siege, Attorney General William Barr spent two weeks organizing former attorney generals to defend FBI sniper Lon Horiuchi. Louis Freeh, Clinton pick for FBI boss, expressed “regret and sorrow for Mrs. Weaver’s death,” which he claimed was “tragic but accidental.”
Freeh later recommend Larry Potts, special agent in charge at Ruby Ridge, to be deputy director of the FBI. Deploying deadly force is the key to FBI advancement, but preventing deadly violence against Americans is a different story.
In 1993, the FBI failed to prevent Islamic terrorists from bombing the World Trade Center, which claimed six victims. Two years later, the FBI failed to prevent the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995 with 168 dead. The lessons went unlearned.
For all its money, power and resources, the FBI failed to prevent Islamic terrorists from hijacking airliners and crashing them into the Pentagon and World Trade Center. The September 11, 2001 attack claimed 3,000 lives and billions in damages.
In 2009, the FBI was monitoring the communications of Maj. Nidal Hasan with al Qaeda terrorist Anwar al-Awlaki. The FBI’s Washington office dropped the surveillance, and on November 5, 2009 at Fort Hood, Texas, Hasan shot dead 13 Americans and wounded more than 30 others. For President Obama, it was “workplace violence,” not even gun violence. No word whether, as with 9/11, anybody in the FBI was disciplined, demoted or discharged.
In 2012, the Department of Homeland Security released Hot Spots of Terrorism and Other Crimes in the United States, 1979-2008. This study classified persons judged to be “suspicious of centralized federal authority” and “reverent of individual liberty” as “extreme right-wing terrorists.”
In 2013, Challengers from the Sidelines: Understanding America’s Violent Far-Right, from the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point, warns about the “anti-federalist movement.” Members of this movement “espouse strong convictions regarding the federal government, believing it to be corrupt and tyrannical, with a natural tendency to intrude on individuals’ civil and constitutional rights.” They also support civil activism, individual freedoms, and self-government.
That same year, the FBI failed to prevent Islamic terrorists Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev from bombing the Boston Marathon in 2013, killing three and wounding 281. Local police, not the FBI, killed Tamerlan and captured Dzhokhar.
Two years later in 2015, the FBI failed to prevent Islamic terrorists Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik from gunning down 14 people in San Bernardino California. The victims included blacks and Hispanics but the massacre was not called a racist hate crime. San Bernardino police, not the FBI, took down the terrorists with no loss of innocent life.
In 2016, the FBI failed to stop Islamic State recruit Omar Mateen from shooting dead 49 people and wounding more than 50 at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida. As in Boston and San Bernardino, local police, not the FBI, took down the mass murderer. That year, the FBI was branching out into election interference.
Counterintelligence boss Peter Strzok told his girlfriend “we’ll stop” Trump’s election and mounted the “Crossfire Hurricane” operation against President Trump. For the FBI, Trump’s supporters then became the Main Enemy.
In 2019, after mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton, President Trump lowered flags to half-mast until August 8. According to Frank Figliuzzi, former FBI assistant director for counterintelligence, this was a secret signal to white supremacists meaning “Heil Hitler,” with H being the eighth letter of the alphabet.
On MSNBC’s “Deadline: White House,” Figliuzzi said the Trump administration should be viewed through the “lens of radicalization” and compared his supporters to a “terrorist organization.” Biden is all-in with it.
In a hate-drenched speech last September 1, Biden charged that those who want America to be great pose the greatest threat. Biden’s FBI brands protesting parents as domestic terrorists, and just about anyone less than worshipful of Joe Biden is smeared as a violent extremist, white supremacist and so forth. People of faith are a prime target.
Last year, a 25–member FBI SWAT team showed up at the residence of pro-life activist Mark Houck in the early morning hours.
“At least 10, 15 marked and unmarked units right in front of me,” Houck told reporters.
“Long guns pointed at me, heavily armored vests, ballistic helmets, ballistic shields, a battering ram.” Houck, a father of seven children, spotted an FBI agent in the back of the house, and at least five federal agents on his porch “with M-16s pointed at me and now my wife as she entered the opening of the door.”
Houck posed no threat and the FBI’s his militant action was over two alleged violations of the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act. In January a federal jury found Houck not guilty.
Craig Robertson “allegedly” threatened Biden and other Democrats, but the online record of threats is hard to find. There are no reports of the 74-year-old actually shooting or attempting to shoot anybody, and it’s unclear if he fired the .357 revolver he allegedly brandished. All depends on the word of the FBI, which mounted no such action at the home of actual terrorists Nidal Hasan, Syed Farook, Omar Mateen, or the Tsarnaev brothers.
The shooting of Robertson is reportedly under review by the FBI’s Inspection Division. This is an agency that reviews itself, so the head of the SWAT team and the agent or agents who killed Robertson will doubtless gain promotion.
At this writing, nobody in Congress is calling for an investigation of the killing, but if anybody thought it was basically an execution, it would be hard to blame them. The FBI, supposedly a nonpartisan bureau of “investigation,” has become Biden’s Geheime Staatspolizei and Einsatzgruppen, a roving death squad.
“Desire to wage war on ordinary Americans—to disadvantage them and even to kill them—had long been bubbling in the ruling class’s basements,” wrote the late Angelo Codevilla in 2019. Branding ordinary Americans as white supremacists, domestic terrorists, and violent extremists is a prelude to deadly violence against them.
Look for more of the same as the 2024 election approaches. The struggle against FBI violence is the struggle of memory against forgetting.