Trump Supporters Now a Special Target of the FBI; They Have Their Own Cute Name and Everything

AP Photo/Terry Renna

As the 2024 presidential election looms, the FBI has created a new class of "domestic violent extremists" to track and place under surveillance: Donald Trump supporters. This new category, AGAAVE ("anti-government, anti-authority violent extremism"), was created to capture people motivated by political or social issues, not just ideology (Newsweek).

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Classified numbers seen by Newsweek substantiate the FBI public claims while also showing that a significant part of the increases in 2020 and 2021 were related to protests after the murder of George Floyd and during COVID as well the elections and January 6. That said, the data show clearly that the main targets of the investigations and cases open were of Trump supporters. While the number of investigations in 2021 almost doubled from 2020 to around 9,000, the number of "full investigations" that led to arrests was only 1,446, not much more than the number of 1,146 January 6 protesters who have been charged with a crime, according to the Justice Department.

I'd just point out that this explains the mindless, Inspector Javert-like behavior of the FBI in rounding up random grandmothers for walking on the Capitol lawn on January 6 or other nefarious behavior. They were juking the numbers to create a fact-set that justifies treating conservative Americans, in general, and Trump supporters, in particular, as a specific danger to the country.

The tabular data from 2021 show that 5,507 "assessments" and 3,311 "investigations" yielded 800 arrests. Yes, those represent a significant departure from previous years, but the percentage of investigative activities resulting in an arrest dropped by 50 percent. 

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"We cannot and do not investigate ideology," a senior FBI official reassured the press after January 6. "We focus on individuals who commit or intend to commit violence or criminal activity that constitutes a federal crime or poses a threat to national security."

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"What other name could we use?" asks one FBI officer who spoke with Newsweek, and who defends what he says is merely a record-keeping change in response to Congressional pressure to track things better. "Obviously if Democratic Party supporters resort to violence, it [AGAAVE-Other] would apply to them as well. It doesn't matter that there is a low likelihood of that. So yes, in practical terms, it refers to MAGA, though the carefully constructed language is wholly nonpartisan."

Another senior intelligence official who requested anonymity told Newsweek, "We've crossed the Rubicon." In emailed responses to questions, he said, "Trump's army constitutes the greatest threat of violence domestically...politically...that's the reality and the problem set. That's what the FBI, as a law enforcement agency, has to deal with. But whether Trump and his supporters are a threat to national security, to the country, whether they represent a threat of civil war? That's a trickier question. And that's for the country to deal with, not the FBI."

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Joe Biden and Congressional Democrats have driven this movement.

From the president down, the Biden administration has presented Trump and MAGA as an existential threat to American democracy and talked up the risk of domestic terrorism and violence associated with the 2024 election campaign.

"Donald Trump and MAGA Republicans are a threat to the very soul of this country," President Biden tweeted last September, the first time that he explicitly singled out the former president. "MAGA Republicans aim to question not only the legitimacy of past elections but elections being held now and into the future," Biden said.

Biden's Homeland Security Advisor Liz Sherwood-Randall said: "The use of violence to pursue political ends is a profound threat to our public safety and national security...it is a threat to our national identity, our values, our norms, our rule of law—our democracy."

At this point, it is probably safe to say that the FBI has completed its evolution from law enforcement to political enforcers. As FBI whistleblower Kyle Seraphin points out, it isn't only the top management at the FBI who are involved; the rank-and-file agents aren't helpless naifs. Their promotions and careers depend on getting with the program, and so they will.

The Bad news: The Bu is captured and most Agents at all levels are participating.

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Suppose we are lucky enough to stop stepping on our peepees and happen to win the White House and one or more houses of Congress in 2024. In that case, one of the first orders of business is to start a vigorous dismantling of the domestic surveillance apparatus built by Homeland Security and the FBI. Once the dismantling is done, the remnants need a vigorous purge. Unless we do that, America, as it has been for the last 200-plus years, is over, and we have a police and surveillance state.

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