Intentional Explosion: Terrorism

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Image for post
Credit Nashville PD, via Twitter

We all woke up yesterday to the news that a large explosion happened in downtown Nashville, Tennessee. It soon was called an intentional explosion and thought the day this monicker remained. In fact, as we woke up this morning this monicker remains. It is not baffling. Since this is most likely far-right, militia based, terrorism.

First, let's review the definition of the term under the US Code:

So, here we are. We know that some white supremacy militias have been talking a little revolution for years. We also know that a group of them planned to attack critical infrastructure. This is not just something in the planning stages, since we have had actual operations in the past. So far most of these attacks have been at transformer substations:

So here we are. We find ourselves with that smells like another far-right attack. Yes, there have been rumors online from the usual suspects that this was Antifa and it did not help that yesterday there were references to the Weathermen, who also looked for spectacular attacks that left relatively few casualties. There was another comparison, very appropriate as well, to the Troubles.

There was one word missing though. This was the word terrorism. Appropriately, observers on social media did state the obvious. If the perpetrators were brown and foreign, in particular Muslim, we would have seen this word used very fast. However, whenever the right-wing is involved in the United States, the media and law enforcement dance around it.
There was no loss of life among civilians, we think. The reason for this is that the perpetrators had a warning from the vehicle bomb that this was going to go off within fifteen minutes. This gives enough time to evacuate, and not enough to disarm. Six officers used that time to evacuate the area and save lives. However, human remains have been found. So whether this was one of the people involved or a civilian caught in the blast, we don’t know.
The explosion disrupted internet, and cell phone service, as well as 911 dispatch for several police departments. It may have been a run to analyze police response.

This disruption is exactly what terrorists want to achieve. It causes fear in a civilian population and we know that at least some militias do not recognize the election of Joe Biden as President-Elect. Nor do they like a multicultural nation. Their goal is the creation of a white ethnostate. They are part of the “Stop the Steal” movement, which has demonstrated across the United States.
We are now in that dangerous time some of us have warned off for years. Also, there was a post of a very suggestive photo on 4Chan before the attack happened. In fact, on the night of the 24th, leading to the 25th. The photo has the usual elements, including a frog, standing for the god Kek, which has become big in QAnon circles. Could this be the equivalent of the usual manifestos? And if so, it is harder to read than just a PDF, as has been the method for some time.

If that photo is related, this is definitely terrorism and it is time we start using the term widely when it comes to the far right. We know that terrorism is growing in the United States, and mostly from that end of the political spectrum. Grievance politics and racism are behind quite a bit of it. But it is critical that we are very cleared eyed about this.

Historian by training. Former day to day reporter. Sometimes a geek who enjoys a good miniatures game.

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