12/09/2004

Center counters threat of domestic terrorism

Dec. 9, 2004 -- With the help of its supporters, the Center's Intelligence Project has remained on the forefront of efforts to curb hate group violence in our country for more than 20 years. Today, its work is more crucial than ever.

Just two weeks after the 2004 presidential election, a cover story in USA Today had this to say about the very real threat of domestic terrorism in the United States:

Since Sept. 11, the nation's attention has been focused on possible threats from Islamic terrorists. But homegrown terrorists have been steadily plotting and carrying out attacks in unrelated incidents across the nation, according to federal authorities ... .

William Krar, for example, was sentenced to more than 11 years in prison after he stockpiled enough sodium cyanide to kill everyone in a high school gymnasium. Authorities also found nine machine guns, 67 sticks of explosives, and more than 100,000 rounds of ammunition — alongside anti-Semitic and racist literature.

Though Krar was not found to have ties with any particular white supremacist organization, an agent warned he was a "good source of covert weaponry for white supremacist and anti-government militia groups ... ."

The Center's Intelligence Project monitors and tracks more than 750 hate groups — and thousands of their members. Information regarding their activities is made available to law enforcement, the media, and concerned individuals through its quarterly Intelligence Report magazine.

This past year, the vigilant work of Project staff exposed:

  • A terrorist's plot to burn 13 synagogues;
  • A plot by anti-immigration forces — backed by hate groups — to infiltrate the Sierra Club;
  • The rising efforts to recruit young people to the hate movement; and
  • A "New Orleans Protocol" calling white supremacists to spread their hate by getting involved in groups like the Red Cross and coaching Little League baseball teams.

The Project's state-of-the-art database has enabled staff members to quickly retrieve crucial information for law enforcement dealing with hate groups and white supremacists in their community.

One security official in New York praised the Intelligence Project's work:

"I not only have to worry about foreign terrorist groups, now I worry about domestic ones as well. Your [information] makes my job just that much easier. Thanks for the wonderful job you folks are doing."

The loyal dedication of Center supporters helps ensure the Intelligence Project will remain a vital tool in the struggle to curb hate violence in America.