Tag Archives: domestic terror

‘Missing the boat’ on terror?

At first, I wasn’t sure I heard correctly what a North Texas congresswoman said about President Biden’s responsibility for the terrorist attack on a Colleyville synagogue.

She said Biden is paying “too much attention” on “far-right domestic terrorists” and ignoring the threat from foreign terrorists. Biden is “missing the boat” on the terror threats, she said.

So said Beth Van Duyne, a Republican whose congressional district includes the Colleyville community that is home to the synagogue where a British citizen took four people hostage.

In a House floor speech, Van Duyne proposed a resolution citing the heroism of the rabbi who tossed a chair at the hostage-taker, giving himself and his three congregants a chance to escape. FBI agents then stormed the Congregation Beth Israel and shot the hostage-taker to death; Van Duyne wants to honor their heroism as well.

Yes, indeed, there is plenty of heroism to honor and I am glad Van Duyne wants to bestow that recognition.

However, I will not accept that President Biden is to blame for allegedly ignoring the threat of terrorists who come to this country to do us harm. My goodness, Biden responded quickly with a statement that declared the man’s threats in Colleyville to be a “terrorist act.”

I guess my question of the moment is: How in the world does one stop someone from doing what the lunatic did? He wasn’t on terrorist watch lists of which I am aware. He walked into the synagogue, shook hands with the rabbi, Charlie Cytron-Walker, and then surprised everyone with demands that the Justice Department release a woman held in a federal prison on terror-related crimes.

Van Duyne said that the loon didn’t take hostages “at an Applebee’s,” that he targeted a synagogue because he intended to commit a hate crime.

I will point out, too, that FBI Director Christophe Wray — appointed to his post by Donald J. Trump — said in 2019 that domestic terror presented the gravest threat to our national security.

There’s a saying we hear in Washington from time to time about how officials are able to “walk and chew gum at the same time.” I believe President Biden is devoting ample attention to threats from all corners … be they foreign or domestic.


Keep eyes on all the balls

It was 20 years ago this weekend when terrorists yanked us out of our anti-terror lethargy.

Two decades on and we’re still — at least I hope — on high alert about foreign terrorist organizations that want to harm Americans.

It was said not long after 9/11 that “there is no question about ‘if’ we get again, but only ‘when.'” We haven’t been hit in the manner we experienced on that gorgeous Tuesday morning in New York, in Washington and in Shanksville, Pa.

Guess what. We have more causes for concern now than perhaps we had on 9/11.

President Bush, on whose watch the 9/11 terror attack occurred, warned us anew over the weekend about the threat of domestic terror. We must remain vigilant, alert and ready to respond to the corn-fed, home-grown, right-wing (mostly) terrorists who lurk among us.

We saw evidence of the domestic threat on 1/6. Yep, those who stormed the Capitol Building, threaten to “hand” the vice president of the United States, sought out the speaker of the House of Reps and defecated on the floor of the halls of government were dangerous in the extreme.

What does mean in terms of lessons learned from 9/11?

It tells me we need to keep our eyes peeled not just offshore, but in our own backyard as well.

I am going to implore our members of Congress — specifically the men who represent my interests — to stand with the president in the event he is forced to respond to domestic, as well as international, terrorists. U.S. Sens. John Cornyn and Ted Cruz and U.S. Rep. Van Taylor — all of whom are Republicans — need to adhere to the time-honored axiom that partisanship should end when our national security is threatened.

That means when threats arise from the heartland as well as from foreign lands. There can be no difference in the ferocity we respond.


President Bush speaks blunt truth

Former President George W. Bush told the world a blunt truth while honoring the heroes who confronted foreign terrorists on 9/11.

He said this:

“We have seen growing evidence that the dangers to our country can come, not only across borders, but from violence that gathers within,” Bush said in a speech Saturday to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks at the Flight 93 Memorial in Shanksville, Pa.

“There is little cultural overlap between violent extremists abroad and violent extremists at home,” he said. “But in their disdain for pluralism, in their disregard for human life, in their determination to defile national symbols, they are children of the same foul spirit.”

“And it is our continuing duty to confront them,” Bush added.

Yes, Mr. President. It certainly is our duty.

Sadly, tragically and to his everlasting shame, one of President Bush’s successors not only has failed to “confront” the enemy within, he has encouraged them to act. I refer, of course, to the 45th POTUS — the dipsh** who shall remain nameless in this blog.

I understand that President Bush’s remarks have been hailed by Democrats and irked supporters of the 45th POTUS. Hmm. Imagine that, if you dare.

I cannot help but wonder why in the name of all that is holy does anyone object to the words of a former wartime president on whose watch we sought to confront international terrorists. Of course he is correct about the threat of domestic terrorists. He echoed the words spoken two years ago by FBI director Christopher Wray — appointed by POTUS 45 — who said the same thing about the domestic terrorism.

I will stand with President Bush on this one.


Domestic terror deserves national attention

By John Kanelis / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Yes, the headline on this blog is one of those no-brainers.

However, to hear the U.S. attorney general speak so forcefully about the threats posed by domestic terror reminds me of why I support this fellow and the individual who nominated him for the job, President Biden.

AG Merrick Garland continues to give voice to issues that need to be heard.

Just as he spoke the other day about the Justice Department’s commitment to ensuring that all Americans have access to the electoral process, he spoke again today about the existential threat posed by domestic terror.

We all saw that threat play out on Jan. 6 when the mob attacked the U.S. Capitol as members of Congress led by Vice President Mike Pence were certifying the results of the 2020 presidential election. Congressional Democrats and a handful of their Republican colleagues want a bipartisan commission to explore in detail the cause and effect of that insurrection. We know already what to call it: an act of rebellion against the government, incited by the immediate past president who continues to foment The Big Lie about the election being “stolen” from him.

The men who served as attorney general under the former president’s single term in office did not speak with anything approaching the passion and eloquence about domestic terrorism that AG Merrick Garland has done.

“We will never take our eyes off the risk of another devastating attack by foreign terrorists,” he said in remarks delivered today at the Justice Department. “At the same time, we must respond to domestic terrorism with the same sense of purpose and dedication.”

Attorney General Merrick Garland unveils plan to combat domestic terrorism – CBS News

CBS News reported: Administration officials, in briefing reporters on the strategy, pointed to an increase in politically, ethnically, and racially motivated acts of domestic terrorism in the U.S. over the years, including the congressional baseball shooting that took place four years ago this week, when a shooter opened fire on members of Congress because they were Republican. 

So it must proceed. FBI Director Christopher Wray has called domestic terrorism an even greater threat to Americans than terrorists from abroad. It is time to respond accordingly.

Let’s talk about existential threats … OK?

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Among the reasons I have welcomed the presidency of Joe Biden is  the return of frank and open discussion by our head of state of existential threats to our nation and to Planet Earth.

Donald Trump called climate change a “hoax”; he said the same thing about the pandemic. He chose to ignore those subjects whenever he appeared in public, which was quite often given his penchant for self-aggrandizement.

President Biden has turned our attention toward issues that really matter. They present serious  threats to all of us.

Climate change? Biden is all in on efforts to combat the change in our worldwide climate. Do not tell me that the bitter cold wave that recently swept in over much of the nation, including Texas, puts the lie to the notion that our climate is changing.

President Biden at least is talking about developing cleaner energy sources, which will — make no mistake about it — produce jobs that could be lost from the fossil fuel industry.

The major beneficiary will be the planet. That’s a bad thing? I think not.

The pandemic? We are welcoming a third vaccine, from Johnson & Johnson. It’s a single-shot dose. It joins Pfizer and Moderna as vaccines that are inoculating millions of Americans each week. Again, Trump chose to downplay the sickness, misery and death that afflicted the nation. Joe Biden is talking openly about it, reminding us to not let up in taking safety measures to prevent infection. Did his predecessor issue such warnings? I cannot remember hearing those warnings fly out of Trump’s blow hole.

Human rights? Donald Trump wouldn’t dare talk about human rights abroad while proclaiming he and North Korea tyrant/despot/killer Kim Jong Un had fallen “in love.” At the very least we are hearing President Biden give needed lip service to the quest for human rights in places where human beings are enslaved, starved, abused by those in power.

Domestic terror? It exists in the form of white supremacists who, according to FBI Director Christopher Wray, pose the greatest existential threat of all to Americans. President Biden vows to attack it head-on and is saying so loudly.

These threats have been all but ignored for the past four years. They require laser focus from the president of the United States. I happen to believe President Biden is devoting the attention to all of them that they deserve.

Terrorism comes home

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Thirteen men have been charged with assorted crimes associated with a plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and possibly do some serious harm to her.

These individuals are terrorists. They fit the description. They aren’t religious zealots. They do not march under some foreign flag.

They are home-grown, corn-fed terrorists and for the life of me I do not understand why Donald Trump won’t condemn them for what they are accused of doing.

The FBI busted them this week as Whitmer sought to manage the coronavirus pandemic that continues to ravage the state she governs. You’ll remember that other armed “militia” members stormed the Michigan capitol in Lansing, taking over the public’s grounds in a hideous display of armed defiance of the government.

These lunatics are members of something called the Boogaloo Boys.

The FBI has uncovered a plot described as an attempt to kidnap Whitmer, put her on “trial,” and punish her for whatever conviction they concoct.

Donald Trump’s response to all of this has been to criticize Whitmer’s handling of the pandemic. Whitmer told an interviewer on Friday that a “decent man” would have asked how she’s doing and inquired about the health and well-being of her family. Donald Trump is, shall we say, not a decent man.

Here we are. The FBI is now pursuing an investigation into a serious terrorist threat that resides in the nation’s heartland. Of course, this isn’t a new phenomenon. Recall what Timothy McVeigh did in April 1995 when he detonated a bomb in front of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, killing 168 Americans … including several children. Back then, though, we had a president — Bill Clinton — who had the heart to call it then what we knew it to be: an act of terror.

These terrorists well could portend a wave that should frighten us all we move past this most consequential election.

America, we have a home-grown problem

I won’t take credit for thinking of this. This thought showed up on a social media platform I see regularly.

The shooter who gunned down 12 victims overnight in Thousand Oaks, Calif., is a home-grown, corn-fed domestic terrorist. He walked into a country/western night club and opened fire with a pistol.

A wall across our southern border wouldn’t have kept him out of the country; nor would a travel ban imposed on those coming here from Muslim countries; the shooter wasn’t an Islamic State goon; he didn’t trudge north into this country as part of a “caravan” comprising murders/rapists/sex traffickers.

He was an American citizen. A former Marine. He purchased his murderous weapon legally.

We need to look inward, folks. We are facing threats from within arguably more dire than from outside our borders.

When is it not ‘domestic terrorism’?


As I write this brief blog post, a shooter has just been arrested by police in Colorado Springs, Colo.

He had been holed up in a Planned Parenthood clinic where he reportedly fired at clients fleeing the clinic once he opened fire.

The question now is this: Are we witnessing an act of “domestic terrorism”?

How about another query: Suppose this was occurring at a shopping mall, or an automobile lube shop, or at a convenience store. Would that be domestic terrorism as well?

My guess is that all those scenarios would constitute an act of domestic terrorism.

That it is occurring at a Planned Parenthood clinic, though, gives this situation the feel of added scrutiny, given that Planned Parenthood has been in the news of late and has become the object of considerable criticism for many years over its role in providing abortions for women.

I am glad to hear that the cops have arrested this shooter, taken him into custody. He now will be charged with whatever crime is applicable. I had feared it wouldn’t end that way.

Let’s hope for the best, which means the police can get some answers from the individual responsible for this frightening event.

He needs to answer the question: Why do this at a Planned Parenthood clinic?