The anti-federalist movement includes beliefs that “the American political system and its proxies were hijacked by external forces interested in promoting a ‘New World Order’ in which the United States will be absorbed into the United Nations or another version of global government.”
By Bruce Branick | January 29, 2013
The cover page of a controversial new report issued by the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point portrays a solemn blue photo of empty chairs in Oklahoma City stating: “‘Field of Empty Chairs’ is part of the Oklahoma City National Memorial which commemorates the victims killed in the 1995 attack on the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building.” Clearly, this is a not so veiled inference of the premise that the Murrah conflagration was somehow a fault of anti-federalists, tossed in together with domestic terrorists, Neo-Nazis and the KKK. Timothy McVeigh was executed for that heinous crime, which killed 168 and injured over 800 men, women and children.
“Challengers From The Sidelines: Understanding America’s Violent Far Right,” by Arie Perliger, who teaches counter-terrorism at the United States Military Academy at West Point, has created a hurricane of criticism from conservative Americans who feel they are being targeted for their patriotic values and political beliefs. Perliger, an Israeli, who by American political standards is a left-wing academic, has been a visiting professor at various American colleges for years, having written and coauthored numerous books, including Jewish Terrorism in Israel.
Liberalism’s academic asp has been at work in our universities and colleges for generations, so that we shouldn’t be surprised its poison has finally come to fruition in our paramount military school, at West Point, New York. But one also has to wonder how the political operatives in the West Wing and the Forward Obama 2012 campaign could not possibly be aware of Professor Perliger, whose work so artfully impugns the conservative views and values of their political enemies. Interestingly, his report is dated November 2012.
Perliger’s West Point report describes the “Landscape of the American Violent Far Right” as having three distinct ideological movements, including “a racist/white supremacy movement, an anti-federalist movement and a fundamentalist movement,” mainly of Christian identity. Yet, there is no mention of domestic Islamist threats like Fort Hood’s Major Nidal Malik Hasan. The Obama administration categorized that terrorist attack as “workplace violence.”
Of the anti-federalist movement, however, Perliger’s report states that it is multifaceted and includes beliefs of domestic groups such that “the American political system and its proxies were hijacked by external forces interested in promoting a ‘New World Order’ (NWO) in which the United States will be absorbed into the United Nations or another version of global government.”
The Perliger report catapulted into the public square when Rowan Scarborough’s front-page above-the-fold article was published on January 21 in The Washington Times, indicating that “A West Point think-tank report that linked people who believe in individual freedom with violent ‘far right’ movements has stirred strong opposition from conservatives and former members of the military.” Nazis are far from ‘right-wing’ as the Left claims, but are, in fact, revolutionary socialists. The Left has had a tendency to mislabel and smear their opponents as “far right” and “right wing,” while attacking adherents of the Tea Party movement as violent and dangerous extremists, when they have not rioted, rampaged or destroyed private property as has the “Occupy” movement.
Perliger’s report says anti-federalists (conservatives) “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. Finally, they support civil activism, individual freedom, and self government. Extremists in the anti-federalist movement direct most of their violence against the federal government and its proxies in law enforcement.”
As a foreigner, Perliger should be reminded of the critical role the anti-federalists played in American history with the ratification of the Constitution and their strong support for the Bill of Rights that eventually became the first 10 amendments to the Constitution. His report is nuanced with suggestions that America’s founding principles are somehow wrong-headed and should not be harbored or they may be dealt with severely by a counterterrorism response. The report’s references have the potential of chilling free speech in America among conservative groups; free speech that is protected by the First Amendment, particularly in view of the fact that this terrorism think tank is part of the United States government.
George Washington stationed his headquarters at West Point “…in the summer and fall of 1779, though it was occupied by General Sam Parsons on 27 January 1778, making the point the longest continually occupied post in the U.S.” The Academy was conceived during our Revolutionary War, and founded by Thomas Jefferson, in 1802. One of the cradles of American civilization, West Point is now left-wing infected.
Leaders at the Point say: “West Point provides a leader-development program steeped in academic rigor, military discipline, and physical challenges, all built upon a moral-ethical foundation. (The Point’s) purpose is to produce leaders of character who are prepared to provide selfless service to our army and the nation.” Patriotism, love of country, and thankfulness to God are not mentioned.
Citizens wonder why an institution that molds future Army warriors to fight foreign enemies now is “…focusing on a perceived domestic threat, which has often been declared to be off limits for the regular Armed Forces.” For example, a call to protect our porous southern border with Mexico from the entry of illegal aliens and potential terrorists utilizing the military was nixed by both the Bush and Obama administrations. They further declare that “…a thorough report on ideologically fed violence should scrutinize unions, Occupy Wall Street demonstrators and radical environmentalists.” All of which are left-wing and, while elements of these groups may be prone to violence, they certainly don’t belong under the report’s rubric of “America’s Violent Far-Right.”
Washington Times Readers Post Over 1600 Comments
A reader of Scarborough’s article who posted a comment remarked that “West Point’s Perliger anti-Terror Center’s Most Wanted List would include: Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, George Washington, James Madison, Ronald Reagan, John Jay, Sam Adams.”
“The West Point study also disparages conservatives in general, saying they live in the past while liberals are future-oriented.” That is the progressive world view if there ever was one. What was President Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign slogan? Forward.
One reader commented: “(The Perliger) report is a disgusting attempt to pervert the purpose of West Point from producing professional officers capable of leading our men and women in battle, to producing politically correct yes-men who will support anti-freedom acts by the dictator-in-chief.”
Another Washington Times reader to post comments on the Perliger story, says: “This report is outrageous in and of itself, but it speaks of a far worse scenario at the hallowed West Point: the rise of liberalism within the faculty there, and their desire to shape the next generation of warrior/patriots into left-of-center thinkers. Our country is in trouble on so many fronts, now.”
Clearly, Perliger’s terrorism report mischaracterizes those in America who believe in our nation’s founding principles, limited government and individual liberty, as radical “far-right” extremists prone to violence. That’s truly unfortunate and does a great disservice to the venerable United States Military Academy at West Point.
Bruce Branick served his nation for over 5 decades at sea. After three years of North Atlantic convoy duty as a Radioman in the U.S. Coast Guard’s Greenland Patrol and a fourth year attached to the Richmond Naval Air Station, a Florida Blimp Base concerned with Anti-submarine Warfare, he spent 50 years in the U.S. Merchant Marine as a Radio Officer, voyaging the world over from the Arctic to Antarctica, from Galveston to Istanbul, from Suez to Hong Kong. Mr. Branick, a contributor to
, is author of
Memoirs of a Loose Cannon
Two If By Sea