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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: U.S. | Animal Liberation | Environment & Forest Defense
FBI says animal and eco-extremists are now top domestic terror threat
As we have seen here lately in the Bay Area, the FBI and other authorities are turning up the heat and shaking down anyone they think might have ties to or information on direct action groups. Now they are publicly declaring the ALF, the ELF, and SHAC public enemies #1 for property destruction, economic sabotage, and harrassment of corporations, institutions, and individuals responsible for despoiling our environment and abusing animals.
FBI surprise on top domestic terror threat
It's not abortion foes or Klan, but animal and eco-extremists
9:53 a.m. ET May 19, 2005
WASHINGTON - Environmental and animal rights extremists who have turned to arson and explosives are the nation’s top domestic terrorism threat, the FBI has told lawmakers.
Groups such as the Animal Liberation Front, the Earth Liberation Front and the Britain-based SHAC, or Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty, are “way out in front” in terms of damage and number of crimes, John Lewis, the FBI’s deputy assistant director for counterterrorism, told a Senate hearing Wednesday.
“There is nothing else going on in this country over the last several years that is racking up the high number of violent crimes and terrorist actions,” Lewis said.
The Animal Liberation Front says on its Web site that its small, autonomous groups of people take “direct action” against animal abuse by rescuing animals and causing financial loss to animal exploiters, usually through damage and destruction of property.
The Earth Liberation Front is an underground movement with no public leadership, membership or spokesperson.
SHAC describes itself as a worldwide campaign that began in 1999 to rescue animals tortured in research labs and shut down the businesses that rely on their use. It says it “does not encourage or incite illegal activity.”
Lewis said the FBI made its conclusions after analyzing all types of cases and comparing the groups with “right-wing extremists, KKK, anti-abortion groups and the like.” He said most animal rights and eco-extremists so far have refrained from violence targeting human life.
full article here: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/7908466/
see also Indybay's "Feds Target Bay Area Activists" here:
The Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works hearings on ELF and ALF is available in Real One Player format at:
Senator Inhofe sounds like Senator McCarthy, accusing legal activists you of "criminal incitement," demonstrating his complete ignorance of constitutional law (surprise, surprise). Senator Jeffords, while being completely spineless in condemning direct action, at least said that they should instead be focusing on right wing terrorism. Senator Lautenburg,
thankfully, rebuked the use of the terrorism label (but threatened to punch
Rod Coronado!). But of course the overall tone was completely alarmist
And they had the gall to invite a representative from the Center on Consumer Freedom to represent industry in front of the US Senate!
(Info on this bogus front group is at:
Go watch the hearings. They're good for a laugh. And a scare.
You should watch/listen to the hearing yourself, but here's a list of a number of the Direct Action [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Direct_Action] groups named in hearing:
http://freefreenow.org/ (torched 3 SUVs and got 22 years)
http://www.animalliberationfront.com/ and http://www.animalliberationpressoffice.org/
http://www.shacamerica.net/ (in Britain: http://www.shac.net/)
These mainstream groups were mentioned as playing supporting roles:
Here's the industry front group attacking environmentalists and AR groups, both direct action and mainstream:
Here's the congressional webpages with transcripts of testimony:
(video/audio of entire 2 hour hearing)
Add this to "These mainstream groups were mentioned as playing supporting roles" in previous comment: