House Democrats raised alarms Wednesday about White supremacist groups targeting military veterans to recruit.
Members of the House Veterans Affairs Committee claimed that veterans are more susceptible to extremist recruitment and are being coaxed into joining White supremacist ranks.
” The corrupting influence domestic violent extremists groups that recruit veterans to their ranks is a critical problem at a moment when our nation remains deeply split,” Rep. Mark Takano (California Democrat), said in the opening of the first of a series planned hearings on this topic.
Republicans argued that Democrats are creating false narratives and portraying veterans in a negative light.
Rep. Mike Bost, Illinois’ top Republican, stated that “headline-grabbing news reports about veterans in extremist organizations don’t tell all the story.”
” There is not much data about how many veterans are involved in violent extremism or the actions that follow,” he stated. It is clear that most veterans are peaceful and law-abiding. We can’t let one or two bad apples ruin the whole group
Democrats provided several experts who testified to the fact that White supremacist threats were growing and infecting veterans.
” The pace, scope and scale of far right extremism have allegedly increased and are escalating quickly,” stated Cynthia Miller-Idriss (director of the Polarization and Extremism Research and Innovation Lab, American University).
She referred to an “explosion in far-right violence” over the past five years. This included White supremacists as well as far-right extremists who were responsible for two-thirds domestic terrorist plots in 2020..
Other Researchers see different patterns.
Lora, a senior homeland-security research fellow at conservative Heritage Foundation, stated that much of the expert panel’s testimony continued a false narrative that was being constructed by the Biden administration in order to target Republicans.
The number of domestic terrorist acts remains low despite being identified as a top threat by President Biden’s Department of Homeland Security. She also said that leftist extremist groups like Antifa often go unrecognized.
Ms. Reis stated that there were approximately 48 domestic terrorist attacks between 2018, and prior to the Antifa riots and Black Lives Matter in 2020..
“These are very small numbers, but this is what the Left is focusing and running with. They continue this narrative of domestic violence, White supremacists and, specifically, being the most persistent, lethal threat in the Homeland,” she stated in an interview. They don’t mention Antifa and BLM, which they completely ignore in 2020. This is biased and being used to target conservatives.
Despite the fact that several active-duty service members were identified by the pro-Trump mob storming the U.S. Capitol, Jan. 1, Pentagon leaders have been focused on extremism within the military. 6.
Secretary to Defense Lloyd Austin pledged to eradicate extremism in the service during his confirmation hearing, just weeks after the attack. The Pentagon directed a Department of Defense “stand down” last spring to address the problem of extremism.