Salon: The Muslim "radicalization" myth: Debunked

What Peter King missed this week: How the government should actually fight homegrown terrorism 

March 12, 2011- When Rep. Peter King's controversial hearing on Muslim "radicalization" finally convened on Thursday, members of Congress had the opportunity to take some good shots at each other, and the relatives of two Americans who became extremists gave emotional testimony about their experiences.

What the hearing did not feature was any serious, evidence-based consideration of the actual issue of so-called homegrown terrorism by Muslim Americans.

King and other Republicans spent a lot of time going after the Muslim group CAIR and defending themselves from Democratic complaints that the hearing was bigoted. As TPM put it: "Peter King Hearing Focuses On Whether Peter King Hearing Was a Good Idea."

AlterNet: Militia's Violent Plot Disrupted in Alaska

March 12, 2011- Four leaders of the Fairbanks-based "Alaska Peacekeeper's Militia" are now in custody, charged with conspiring to commit murder, kidnapping and arson. Their plot, by all accounts, was pretty serious. (thanks to E.D. for the tip)

Federal agents made extensive recordings of Fairbanks militia members plotting to kill or kidnap judges and Alaska State Troopers and burn their houses, according to documents filed in court Friday. [...]

The militia members amassed high-powered weaponry, including grenades and .30- and .50-caliber machine guns, with which to carry out retaliatory strikes against law enforcement officials, according to court documents.

One of the leaders of the militia, Francis "Schaeffer" Cox, was arrested on a gun charge a year ago, but failed to show up for a court appearance. That, apparently, led to what the militia called the "241" (two for one) plan.

Seattle Times: Man charged with attempted MLK Day bombing linked to neo-Nazi group

March 10, 2011- DNA evidence and purchases of electronic components led investigators to the former Fort Lewis soldier accused of planting a rat poison-laced bomb along the route of Spokane's Martin Luther King Jr. Day parade, according to a source familiar with the investigation.

Kevin William Harpham, who reportedly has links to a neo-Nazi group, was arrested by FBI agents and local law enforcement Wednesday morning at his home near Addy, a community of about 1,400 people roughly 55 miles northwest of Spokane.

Talking Points Memo: 'Sovereign Citizens' Arrested In Alaska For Alleged Plot To Kill Police, Federal Judge

March 11, 2011- Militia activist Schaeffer Cox and four associates who reportedly stockpiled weapons were arrested on Thursday for allegedly conspiring to kill multiple Alaska State Troopers and a federal judge.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports that the group -- Cox, Lonnie. G. Vernon and his wife Karen Vernon, as well as Coleman Barney of North Pole and Michael Anderson -- were taken into custody by state police. All five face several state charges, including "conspiracy to commit murder, conspiracy to commit kidnapping, conspiracy to commit arson, misconduct involving weapons in the third degree, hindering prosecution in the first degree and tampering with evidence," according to a press release by the Alaska State Troopers.

Salon: White supremacist charged in MLK Day bomb plot

A Washington man with ties to a neo-Nazi group allegedly planted a backpack explosive on a Spokane parade route 

March 11, 2011- A 36-year-old resident of Washington state has been arrested and charged with planting a backpack bomb along the route of a Spokane Martin Luther King Day parade in January.

Kevin William Harpham, who has apparent ties to white supremacist and neo-Nazi groups, was charged with attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction and possession of an unregistered explosive device. (Read the criminal complaint here.)

NYT: Terror Hearing Puts Lawmakers in Harsh Light

March 10, 2011- One member of Congress broke down and cried. Another was so incensed that she waved a pocket-size copy of the Constitution and declared, “This breathing document is in pain.” And there were so many angry charges of McCarthyism and countercharges of “political correctness” that it sometimes seemed that the topic at hand on Thursday in Washington was the radicalization of the House Homeland Security Committee, not American Muslims. 

The televised hearing, led by Representative Peter T. King, Republican of New York, was jarring and not just because of the politically delicate subject matter, namely, terrorist sympathies within the Muslim American community. These kinds of proceedings tend to be prosecutorial, but lawmakers in this case mostly pointed fingers at one another.

Talking Points Memo: Iowa GOPer Dubs NRA-Backed Legislation 'Give-A-Handgun-To-A-Schizophrenic Bill'

March 11, 2011- Republican Iowa State Rep. Jeff Kaufmann, speaker pro tem of the Iowa State House, was caught joking on a hot mic that a proposal which would allow state residents to carry weapons in public without permission from a sheriff and without any training or a background check might better be called the "give-a-handgun-to-a-schizophrenic-bill."

The Des Moines Register reports that the comment was caught on video during a discussion of House Study bill 219, the so-called "Alaska carry" legislation after a similar law in Alaska.

As the members discuss pulling Rep. Ron Jorgenson from leading debate on a controversial union collective bargaining bill, Rep. Erik Helland, jokes that he's going to get stuck carrying the bill because he's the "dirty hatchet man for the caucus" because he's "expendable."


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