DHS Official Called Portland Violence ‘Organized’ in Leaked Email

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A former top Department of Homeland Security (DHS) official determined in July that violence in Portland was “organized” by individuals with an ideology defined as “Violent Antifa Anarchist Inspired,” or VAAI, according to a leaked email.

In a leaked email obtained by CBS News reporter Catherine Herridge, then-Acting Under Secretary for Intelligence & Analysis Brian Murphy wrote in an email on July 25:

We can’t say any longer that this violent situation is opportunistic. Additionally, we have overwhelmingly [sic] intelligence regarding the ideologies driving individuals toward violence and why the violence has continued. A core set of Threat actors are organized and show up night after night, and share common [Tactics, Techniques and Procedures] and drawing on like minded individuals to their cause.

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 and infrastructure they believe represent authority or represent political and social ideas they reject.

It added: “The VAAI is specific to Portland and specific to the Federal, State, and Local facilities under violent assault. If similar situations arise down the line the VAAI may apply.”

Acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf has said both he and Attorney General William Barr are investigating the heads of Antifa and Black Lives Matter for the violent protests.

“It’s something I’ve talked to the A.G. personally about, and I know that they are working on it,” he said in an interview with Fox News’s Tucker Carlson on August 31. Wolf went on:

We had about 175 arrests in Kenosha, almost a hundred of them were from out of state. So we know they’re moving around. We’ve seen them in D.C., in Sacramento and elsewhere. They’re organized. We’ve seen similar tactics being used from Portland and other cities across the country as well. So we know that there’s organization.

He added: “The Department of Justice, who has the lead in all of those investigations are certainly moving as quickly as possible. Again, it’s something that I talk with the Attorney General about almost on a weekly basis.”

Republican lawmakers have also urged Barr to investigate and prosecute groups responsible for the violence.

Fifty Republican lawmakers, led by Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO), wrote in a September 10 letter:

We write to share our deep concerns regarding the ongoing violence that has gripped American cities and threatened the rule of law across our nation. ANTIFA and other left-wing anarchist groups have unleashed a barrage of totalitarian attacks on our country in recent months, including accosting a sitting U.S. Senator, hijacking peaceful rallies, organizing armed riots, destroying property, burning buildings, stealing livelihoods, and spreading hate.

Buck said in a statement: “I am proud to lead this effort with my colleagues to put a stop to these coordinated attacks that have subverted our system of government and way of life.”


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