Monday, March 29, 2010

Michigan Militia

Please tell me that none of these folks is from Flint.

Charlie Savage of The New York Times reports:
Nine members of a Michigan-based Christian militia group have been indicted on sedition and weapons charges in connection with an alleged plot to murder law enforcement officers in hopes of setting off an antigovernment uprising.

In court filings unsealed Monday, the Justice Department accused the nine people of planning to kill an unidentified law enforcement officer, then plant
improvised explosive devices of a type used by insurgents in Iraq to attack the funeral procession.

Eight of the defendants were arrested over the weekend in raids in Michigan, Ohio and Indiana. A ninth remained at large, the Justice Department said. The indictments against them were returned last Tuesday. The defendants were identified as members of Hutaree, described by federal prosecutors as an anti-government extremist organization based in Lenawee County, Mich., and which advocates violence against local, state and federal law enforcement. The group saw local and state police as “foot soldiers” for the federal government, which it viewed as its enemy, along with participants in what they deemed to be a “New World Order,” according to the indictment.


  1. I think I've seen that woman at The Torch.

  2. I'm surprised that there was no body count or conflagration. Meanwhile, 13 people were gunned down by a psychiatrist in Fort Hood, upwards of 38 were killed in a subway bombing in Moscow, and the panty bomber nearly brought down an aircraft with 150 people on board, and almost no one talked about the religion of the perpetrators of those atrocities, not that in this case it related to the practice of a religion anyway.

  3. No one talked about the religion of the underwear bomber or the Ft. Hood shooter? Are you kidding me? The entire discussion seemed like it was about religion. And the lead story on the subway bombing in the NY Times, CNN and MSNBC dealt with Muslim extremists. We must be getting our news from different sources.

  4. Thankfully, none of these cats are from Flint. The Michigan natives are from Lenawee and Hillsdale Counties, along the border of Indiana and Ohio. A few of the others were from those states as well, but they all did their training in Michigan, from what I have heard.

  5. I bet they didn't include a reference to a religion in the first sentence of the stories.

    J.L. is right. This is not a Flint story anyway.

  6. To be fair to Gordon and the media, the Hutaree do identify themselves as a Christian group first and foremost. They used religion as an excuse for their actions.

    The religion of the other terrorists you cited was brought up by the media, but those guys also didn't have a website and a YouTube page devoted to their cause. A website that contains bible quotes and has this mission statement:

    "Preparing for the end time battles to keep the testimony of Jesus Christ alive"

    It is fair to point out this group's religion, because they are the ones that made it such a core part of their group.

  7. JL said, "those guys also didn't have a website and a YouTube page devoted to their cause. A website that contains bible quotes and has this mission statement"

    The truth is, if you look it up, you will find there are hundreds of terrorist websites and youtube videos which are not and do not claim to be Christian. They are monitored, and many videos are taken down, but they are often also in Arabic characters and dialects and codes which only experts can begin to decipher.

    Every time the polls are down, they give Larry, Darryl and Darryl guns and trot them out to distract us from what 99% of the terrorist problem is.

    Think about this when you go to the airport and they are searching the persons and luggage of 80 year old men and women who have lived in the US their entire lives and letting some of the strangest and obvious terrorist profiles go. Tell me honestly if that makes you feel safer.

    But this is not Flint related, and I have to wonder why it was posted. If there is a similar blog about Toledo, perhaps it would fit better there.

  8. It's really hard for me to believe that someone is honestly arguing that muslims have gotten a free ride on terrorism coverage by the media. And the implication that these goofball militia members are getting picked on because they're some sort of extremist Christian group is equally silly.

    Perplexed, are you just messing with us?

  9. This blog is supposed to be about Flint. This thread has nothing to do with Flint. Therefore, I have to wonder if the motivation for posting it was political.

  10. Perplexed, that's not the case. In fact, over the past few years I've gone out of my way to avoid political issues because this just really isn't the forum for them. It seems like 50 percent of the web is devoted to political squabbling, so I figured people could find it elsewhere.

    (In fact, this very discussion is an example of why I try to avoid political issues. I just didn't think this was a political issue. Guess I was wrong.)

    I posted this because it was a national story about Michigan, and the blog often touches on subjects that relate to the entire state or the Midwest in general. Likewise, I often write about national economic and housing issues because those issues impact Flint and Michigan so severely. Flint's still part of the larger world, after all.

    And although it pains me to say it, the post was supposed to be mildly amusing. Flint's always in the news for something negative, so I was trying to play off that. Okay, not exactly hilarious, but that was the intent.

    But as a journalist, I'm still going to have to respectfully disagree with you on how the media covered the militia story. When a group allegedly does something illegal in pursuit of what they describe as their Christian ideals, the press would be remiss if they didn't mention the group was Christian.

    I appreciate you taking the time to comment and I hope you keep reading the blog.

  11. In case you didn't read the fine print on the back page of your local newspaper, the Hutaree were acquitted on all conspiracy charges. To save face, the prosecution got guilty pleas from one or two members for minor weapons charges, since the Hutaree had no money for OJ/Patty Hearst lawyers.

    There still is a First Amendment, at least today. Distributing "leaflets" is still protected speech. These guys may not be the brain trust, but their prosecution was just a distraction from the major problems that plague not just Flint, but our whole country.


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