PORTLAND, OR – While the idea of memes being linked to violence from rioting in recent months may seem like a bizarre comparison, apparently a recent report alleges that there indeed lies a connection between the internet culture and violence in the streets during riots and protests.
There's no such thing as Antifa and they're certainly not organized and others lies you've been toldhttps://t.co/bpi0yhp5Ly
— Schrödinger’s Aristocrats (@jumpinjonnydee) September 16, 2020
Specifically, these types of memes are of the ilk that champion anti-police sentiments and promote violence to be enacted by far-left agitators, according to The Washington Post. The newspaper reported on the data presented by the Network Contagion Research Institute, which typically homes in on what it characterizes as far-right propaganda being spread online.
But, according to The Washington Post, the NCRI found that those among far-left groups are now using social media and memes to spread anti-police rhetoric:
“Some left-wing groups have embraced similar social media tactics, including memes and humorous catchphrases, to spread their messages and possibly help coordinate offline activity.”
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) September 15, 2020
The news outlet’s take on the report further stated that the NCRI believes there was a direct link to social media coordination by far-leftists and riots that happened “in Seattle, Portland and other cities on July 25, involving fires, looting and property damage.”
Memes reported on depicted the likes of “officers being shot or their vehicles burned” and one group had even suggested that rioters use “laser pointers to obstruct surveillance” and light “fires at police barricades.” But what was more troubling was when another online leftist “urged people to use 3-D printers to make guns that can’t be traced by authorities.”
The activities monitored online showed that the numbers were surging when it came to the frequency of when anti-police talking points were mentioned or shared on various platforms:
“Comments using anti-police slogans surged nearly 300 percent on Reddit and more than 1,000 percent on Twitter during the unrest triggered by the killing of George Floyd in May.”
Although, while the use of memes to promote and organize far-left demonstrations is a relatively new revelation, the mere organization of Antifa-like groups and malefactors at these demonstrations was shown to have been known by authorities for some time.
Here’s our previous report on a leaked Department of Homeland Security email from July of this year.
PORTLAND, OR – A recently leaked email stemming from a former official from the Department of Homeland Security alleges that there’s “overwhelming intelligence” that the months of violence and riots in Portland have been organized by bad actors that are described as “Violent Antifa Anarchist Inspired”.
Catherine Herridge from CBS News recently shared the leaked email on Twitter, apparently this intel has been floating around the DHS since as early as July 25th.
#Whistleblower #PortlandProtest Breaking: According to this @DHSgov internal email, obtained @CBSNews, former Acting Under Secretary for Intelligence & Analysis Brian Murphy wrote colleagues on July 25th that the Portland violence was not “opportunistic” but “organized” citing pic.twitter.com/K7Aoe0yFbB
— Catherine Herridge (@CBS_Herridge) September 14, 2020
According to the post online, the leaked email that contained a breakdown of what’s behind the riots in Portland offered by former Acting Under Secretary for Intelligence & Analysis Brian Murphy.
In a emailed with the subject line reading out as “Immediate change of definitions in Portland”, the opening lines in the email noted that moving forward, officials are to replace a designation toward labeling malefactors as “V.O.” to “Violent Antifa Anarchist Inspired (VAAI)”:
“Why? Myself and I&A leaders have been reviewing the Portland FIRS, OSIRS, Baseball cards of the arrested and FINTEE as well as the Ops info. The individuals are violently attacking the Federal facilities based on those [VAAI] ideologies. We can’t say any longer that this violent situation is opportunistic.”
are organized and show up night after night, and share common TTPs (Tactics, Techniques and Procedures)..”
"Threat actors who are motivated by Anarchists or ANTIFA (or a combination of both) ideologies to carry out acts of violence against State, Local and Federal authorities..”
— Catherine Herridge (@CBS_Herridge) September 14, 2020
The obtained email continued from there, making mention of the copious amount of intelligence obtained during the investigations into the Portland riots:
“Additionally, we have [overwhelming] intelligence regarding the ideologies driving individuals toward violence and why the violence has continued.
A core set of Threat actors are organized, show up night after night, share common TTPs [tactics, techniques and procedures] and drawing on like minded individuals to their cause.”
There have been long-running concerns over groups like Antifa using the like of social media (particularly Twitter) to organize their mobilization efforts. So, the mentioning of the fact that Murphy coined these endeavors as “organized” lends further credibility to those concerns.
Murphy’s email continued on, also explaining that while these VAAI inspired individuals are highly active during these riots and protests, that not every criminal action or displayed violence can be attributed to the ideologues:
“I recognize we may not be able to attribute every individual as VAAI however we need to look at the totality of the intelligence both current and previous and recognize the motivation for the violence and why people have shown up to commit violence for about 60 days.
And why individuals are using social media to encourage the VAAI on the ground to carry out acts of violence.”
To further clarify how the delineation of a VAAI will be defined, according to the email, Murphy defined the designation as follows:
“Threat actors who are motivated by Anarchist or ANTIFA (or a combination of both) ideologies to carry out acts of violence against State, Local and Federal authorities and infrastructure they believe represent authority or represent political or social ideas they reject.”
Now keep in mind, this email was written on July 25th.
Yet on July 26th, House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler claimed that Antifa being in Portland was some sort of conspiracy theory from Washington.
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House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-NY) was asked to disavow Antifa’s violence in Portland Oregon and his response was, “that’s a myth”.
Writer/Producer Austin Fletcher posed the question to the democrat while he was waiting for his ride to pick him up. Fletcher then tweeted a short video of Nadler in what is quickly becoming the Tweet heard ’round the world.
I ran into Jerry Nadler in DC and asked him to disavow the Antifa violence/rioting in Portland.
“THATS A MYTH” pic.twitter.com/veImyE2rju
— Essential Fleccas 🇺🇸 (@fleccas) July 27, 2020
I’m sorry?? A myth?
So the rioting that’s been going on for weeks now is just a figment of our imagination. Glad we got that cleared up.
Eric Trump reposted the tweet saying:
“This is the Democratic Party in 2020”
This is the Democratic Party in 2020 https://t.co/5qQfI4BHU6
— Eric Trump (@EricTrump) July 27, 2020
Elijah Schaffer, a writer for conservative media company Blaze Media, took to Twitter as well saying,
“Portland is at war every night, but Rep Jerry Nadler says my video coverage of Antifa violence and vandalism is a ‘myth’”
Portland is at war every night, but Rep Jerry Nadler says my video coverage of Antifa violence & vandalism is a “myth”@fleccas: “Meanwhile…they’re trying to burn down the courthouse”
Antifa is very real, & they are incredibly dangerous pic.twitter.com/NbSnoq9cZl
— ELIJAH RIOT (@ElijahSchaffer) July 27, 2020
According to The Portland Bureau of Police, the riot that took place on July 26th hosted the following:
“The largest group gathered on SW 3rd Avenue outside the federal courthouse and the Justice Center and the nearby parks and streets.
There were thousands gathered. Throughout the night some people in this crowd spent their time shaking the fence around the building, throwing rocks, bottles, and assorted debris over the fence, shining lasers through the fence, firing explosive fireworks into the area blocked by the fence, and using power tools to try to cut through the fence.
People wore gas masks, carried shields, hockey sticks, leaf blowers, flags, and umbrellas specifically to thwart police in crowd dispersal or attempt to conceal criminal acts.
People against the fence sprayed unknown liquids through it toward the courthouse. People tied rope to the fence and attempted to pull it down.”
Portland Police also estimate approximately 200 people were surrounding the Portland Police Association offices in north Portland attempting to block the streets by pulling down fencing and other debris.
These, along with numerous other incidents, sound an awful lot like attempts to “carry out acts of violence against State, Local and Federal authorities and infrastructure,” as Murphy so described just the day prior to the July 26th riot.
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