As Antifa in Portland has announced more riots for tonight and tomorrow night, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas just claimed at a hearing of the House Homeland Security Committee that the most “lethal and persistent terrorism-related threat” that the country faces today is “domestic, ideologically motivated extremism.” It should be clear to everyone by now that by that, he means us: Americans who don’t support the far-left agenda of the Biden administration, the Democrats, and the establishment media.
Mayorkas also brought some good news: the global jihad is so very 2002, and we’re beyond all that now. According to Forbes, he claimed that “since the September 11 attacks, the threat landscape against the U.S. has substantially ‘evolved’ to the point that foreign terrorism is no longer the chief concern of DHS.” That’s wonderful, but he should hope that the Islamic jihadis don’t hear about this and decide that he has handed them a golden opportunity to operate inside the United States while DHS is otherwise occupied.
Certainly Mayorkas had other things on his mind, as he claimed that the riot at the Capitol on January 6 was a “searing example” of the threat the nation faces today. In line with this, Forbes reported, “DHS announced in February that it would provide $77 million to state and local governments to combat domestic violent extremism. At the time Mayorkas wrote in a statement that ‘the most significant terrorist threat facing the nation comes from lone offenders and small groups’ whose violent acts are motivated by ‘extremist ideological beliefs.’”
That’s where the insidious nature of what Mayorkas is saying is clearest. Conspicuously lacking once again is any definition of what exactly constitutes “domestic, ideologically motivated extremism” or “extremist ideological beliefs.” Is it support for violence and actual insurrection (as opposed to a leaderless, weaponless but politically useful riot such as took place on January 6)? Or is it simply holding views that dissent from the hard-left agenda?
It is increasingly obvious that the latter is meant. Remember that Robert Grenier, who served as the CIA station chief for Pakistan and Afghanistan and later as director of the CIA Counterterrorism Center, declared in February: “You know, even at the seeming height of the crisis immediately after 9/11, there really weren’t that many members of al-Qaida in Afghanistan. And the thrust of our campaign there was, yes, to hunt down al-Qaida, but primarily to remove the supportive environment in which they were able to live and to flourish.”
That “supportive environment” is ordinary, unwoke Americans who don’t want to be overwhelmed by an authoritarian socialist nanny state. When Mayorkas refers to “domestic, ideologically motivated” extremists, he doesn’t mean the real ones who rioted all summer in Portland, Seattle, Kenosha, Wisconsin, New York, Atlanta, Washington, D.C., and numerous other cities that I have already forgotten. It was Leftists: Antifa and Black Lives Matter, who have also been found to have been among those storming the Capitol that is being used as a Reichstag Fire pretext to shut down dissent from the Leftist agenda. When Mayorkas refers to “domestic, ideologically motivated” extremists, what he really means are ordinary citizens who oppose the dominant political philosophy. Lies such as what he is spreading here are in service of solidifying the hegemony of that philosophy.
However, before you sign on to the idea that support for Donald Trump equals support for “insurrection” and the enabling of terrorism, note that there isn’t any actual evidence for this at all, and Biden’s handlers have not released any. As a report in Yahoo News pointed out in February, “the government has released no data on historical activity or the current threat landscape.” Apparently we’re just supposed to take their word for it.
So while Alejandro Mayorkas devotes the energies of the DHS to hunting for “right-wing extremists,” Antifa will instigate more riots, and Islamic jihadis, no doubt some newly arrived in the country as grateful beneficiaries of the Biden administration’s new mass migration policies, will continue to plot. Both groups now essentially have a free hand, as it is politically inconvenient for the political and media elites to notice they exist. What could possibly go wrong?
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He is author of 21 books, including the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book is Rating America’s Presidents: An America-First Look at Who Is Best, Who Is Overrated, and Who Was An Absolute Disaster. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.