The Anthrax Attackers: "Hate Groups"? - Or (Shh!) Immigrants?
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After weeks of blasting every goat barn in Afghanistan visible to high-altitude aircraft, the U.S. government is slowly beginning to realize that the people sending anthrax germs to assorted members and institutions of the American ruling class are not in Afghanistan at all but right here. The bombing campaign has accomplished virtually nothing, and the FBI, between press conferences admitting it has no idea who's mailing the anthrax, continues to issue ominous warnings of yet further major terrorist attacks. It may not yet be clear who's winning President Bush's war on terrorism, but it's painfully obvious which side isn't, and the reason we're not is because we still refuse to identify mass immigration as the real threat. 

Unable to figure out who is responsible for the germ warfare being waged inside the United States against the federal government and the hapless postal workers serving as human shields for the ruling class, the FBI is now casually throwing out guesses that maybe it's not Arab terrorists after all; maybe it's white right-wing hate groups. Maybe, for that matter, it's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. There's no more evidence for the one than the other, but the Bureau's confession of ignorance has served to ignite yet another internal witch hunt for "hate groups." 

No sooner had the FBI announced last week that "Everything seems to lean toward a domestic source" for the anthrax mailings than the stalwarts of the Southern Poverty Law Center, the Anti-Defamation League, the Simon Wiesenthal Center and other professional demonologists of the right were summoned up to expound on the dangers of right-wing extremism. "There's a great solidarity with the point of view of the [Osama] bin Ladens of the world," solemnly pronounced Mark Potok of the left-wing Southern Poverty Law Center.

The SPLC and similar groups have raked in fortunes for themselves over the years by barking up every wrong tree in the country for "terrorism of the right." When real terrorism finally arrived in this country, it came not from "white hate groups" but Arab immigrants. The witch hunters ought to be ignored as the frauds they are, but still the mass media quote them as though they really know what they're talking about. 

So far no one—not the FBI and certainly not the witch hunters—has specified a single "hate group" likely to have purchased or stolen the anthrax germs or to have mailed them to the designated targets. The only reason such groups have been mentioned is that no one has any notion of who else might have done it. As always, "right-wing extremists" are a convenient horse to whip. Had a group from the "right," if that's the proper term, sent the anthrax, it would probably have sent it to other targets. Tom Brokaw and Sen. Tom Daschle are not especially high on the far right's hate list, certainly nowhere near as high as Dan Rather and Ted Kennedy, let alone Bill and Hillary Clinton, or the founder of the SPLC himself, Morris Dees. Anti-black and anti-Jewish types would more likely have targeted prominent blacks or Jews for their anthrax, and the blunt truth is that hardly any group on the American right would have the funds, the brains or the skills to obtain and handle anthrax germs safely and effectively.

For all the speculation and outright guesses in which both federal authorities and the witch hunters' league have engaged in recent days, the likelihood remains that it's probably Arab terrorists who are behind the anthrax mailings. That means two things.

First, it means that Arab immigrants are the real problem, not the chaps in Afghanistan, and that they are capable of acting on their own without direct contact with the chiefs of the network. The Fort Lauderdale Sun Sentinel reported last week that "While the Immigration and Naturalization Service increased deportations of foreign-born criminals in recent years, it says it has been unable to deport 300,000 others it says should go—250,000 among them have vanished into American society." For that matter, the Washington-based Center for Immigration Studies announced last week also that there are now 8 million illegal aliens inside the United States—at least 2 million more than the federal government thought.

And secondly, it means that the federal government and the political class that runs it are not only unable but also simply unwilling to identify mass immigration as the real source of the terrorist threat today—not Afghan goat herders and religious nuts and not domestic right-wing bogey men. Until the government and its leaders at least are willing to see the reality that's trying to send them death by their own postal service, they and the Americans they purport to govern will remain in mortal danger.


November 01, 2001

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