Trump Asks, ‘What About the Alt-Left?’ Here’s an Answer.The New York Times ‘Just no’: Lawmakers blast Trump’s latest Charlottesville remarksPresident Trump defended his belated condemnation of white supremacists who engaged in violence in Charlottesville, Va., by arguing that he was exercising caution in casting blame. Then he returned to his original position that there was ample fault on both sides.Asked about Senator John McCain, Republican of Arizona, who characterized calls for the firing of Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster, the president’s national security adviser, as “the same purveyors of hatred and ignorance who precipitated the recent violence in Charlottesville,” Mr. Trump suggested that blame should be shared.Sign Up For the Morning Briefing Newsletter“What about the ‘alt-left’ that came charging at, as you say, the ‘alt-right’?” he asked. “Let me ask you this: What about the fact they came charging — that they came charging with clubs in their hands, swinging clubs? Do they have any problem? I think they do.”Antifa, or anti-fascist activists, certainly used clubs and dyed liquids against the white supremacists, according to the New York Times reporters Sheryl Gay Stolberg and Hawes Spencer, who covered the violence in Charlottesville. Other counterprotesters included nonviolent clergy members.But there is one stark difference between the violence on the two sides: The police said that James Alex Fields Jr. of Ohio drove his car into a crowd and killed at least one person, Heather Heyer. Mr. Fields was charged with second-degree murder.Comparing Antifa to Mr. Fields’s act is like “comparing a propeller plane to a C-130 transport,” said Brian Levin, the director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino.“Using the fact that some counterprotesters were, in fact, violent, creates a structural and moral false equivalency that is seriously undermining the legitimacy of this president,” Professor Levin said.Antifa and black block — the far left of today — engaging in street brawls and property damage, while reprehensible, is “not domestic terrorism,” said J. J. MacNab, a fellow in the Program on Extremism at George Washington University. Similar episodes of extreme violence certainly exist on the left: the recent congressional baseball shooting in Virginia, or the bombing of the North Carolina Republican Party headquarters.But overall, far-right extremist plots have been far more deadly than far-left plots (and Islamist plots eclipsed both) in the past 25 years, according to a breakdown of two terrorism databases by Alex Nowrasteh, an analyst at the libertarian Cato Institute.White nationalists; militia movements; anti-Muslim attackers; I.R.S. building and abortion clinic bombers; and other right-wing groups were responsible for 12 times as many fatalities and 36 times as many injuries as communists; socialists; animal rights and environmental activists; anti-white- and Black Lives Matter-inspired attackers; and other left-wing groups.Of the nearly 1,500 individuals in a University of Maryland study of radicalization from 1948 to 2013, 43 percent espoused far-right ideologies, compared to 21 percent for the far left. Far-right individuals were more likely to commit violence against people, while those on the far left were more likely to commit property damage.“We find that the right groups and the jihadi groups are more violent on the left,” said Gary LaFree, one the researchers and the director of the University of Maryland’s National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism. The data set is in the process of being updated, so it does not reflect current state of extremism, Professor LaFree cautioned, but “in general, we’ve been seeing this fairly robust trend in right-wing cases.”All of the experts contacted by The Times stressed that extremism ebbs and flows, based on the presence of a charismatic leader, incremental changes in society, seismic events like an election or war, among other factors.The far left was far more active and violent in the 1970s, while the far right and, specifically, militia movements resurged in the 1980s. A decade later, environmental terrorists became active. And jihadist attacks dominated after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.“The extreme left has not been nearly as organized” in recent decades, said Brent Smith, the director of Terrorism Research Center at the University of Arkansas. “Leaders of the extreme left died off and they’re floundering without leadership.”While antigovernment activists, for example, have been fomenting and building their anger since 2008, Antifa is a more nascent movement, reflected in their scale. The far right has a scattered membership of a few hundred thousand, estimated Ms. MacNab, compared with a few thousand Antifa activists.“They’re less structured, they’re less organized, they’re active on social media but not to the extent of others. They don’t have the entree into and oxygen of support from the mainstream left,” Professor Levin said.Though Antifa and black block “are on my radar,” he still considers violent Salafist jihadists and white nationalists, neo-Nazis, “sovereign citizens” and radical anti-abortion extremists — the consortium of far-right agitators — more concerning.Get politics and Washington news updates via Facebook, Twitter and in the Morning Briefing newsletter.
Fox News Host Kat Timpf Absolutely Goes Off on ‘Disgusting’ Trump Presser The Daily Beast 3 hours agoPresident Trump’s bonkers Tuesday afternoon presser, in which he blamed the “alt-left” for the deadly Charlottesville violence, did not sit particularly well with one Fox News host.The Fox News Specialists co-host Kat Timpf’s immediate comment on the press conference, which aired during the early portion of her show, was one of unrestrained revulsion.“It’s crazy for me to have to comment because I’m still in the phase where I’m wondering if it was actually real life what I just watched,” a visibly stunned Timpf told her co-host Eboni Williams. “It was one of the biggest messes I’ve ever seen. I can’t believe it happened.”Timpf then railed against the president for saying he waited two days to unequivocally condemn white-nationalist hate groups because “You don’t make statements that direct unless you know the facts”—a claim that strikes with particular irony considering how knee-jerkedly Trump reacts to violent incidents purportedly involving Muslims.“I’m surprised he didn’t say it was a terrorist instead of waiting to say something,” Timpf explained. “‘This was clearly an Islamic terrorist!’ Because he’s done that before, before he’s had the facts. He is not measured in his criticism. He goes after people as soon as he gets the inkling.”She continued the fury: “For him to take 48 hours, that is something he has never done before. And, yeah, it shouldn’t be some kind of bold statement to say, ‘Yes, a gathering full of white supremacist Nazis doesn’t have good people in it. Those are all bad people, period.’ And fact that that’s controversial, I don’t know if i should just laugh. I have too much eye makeup on to start crying right now.”She concluded: “It’s disgusting.”
Group that allegedly helped plan inauguration protests subpoenaed CBS News KKK leader says he is ‘glad’ about woman’s death in CharlottesvilleSlide 1 of 110: A protester takes a picture while holding a sign that reads „IMPEACH” in downtown Washington following the inauguration of President Donald Trump on January 20, 2017 in Washington, DC. Washington and the entire world have watched the transfer of the United States presidency from Barack Obama to Donald Trump, the 45th president.1/110 SLIDES © Spencer Platt/Getty ImagesA protester takes a picture while holding a sign that reads „IMPEACH” in downtown Washington following the inauguration of President Donald Trump on Jan. 20, 2017 in Washington, DC. Washington and the entire world have watched the transfer of the United States presidency from Barack Obama to Donald Trump, the 45th president.The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Washington, D.C. has subpoenaed records from a group that allegedly helped facilitate Trump inauguration protests.The office has subpoenaed user records from the company DreamHost, which web-hosts #DisruptJ20, a group that allegedly assisted in planning protests against President Trump’s inauguration in January. The subpoena is related to prosecutions of people arrested for the violence that occurred in Washington, D.C.DreamHost, which provides website hosting and domain name registry, is fighting the subpoena and has posted it online. The subpoena asks DreamHost „to provide all information available to us about this website, its owner, and, more importantly, its visitors,” their website reads. The company argues that the subpoena is broad to the point of invading user privacy, as it would subsequently reveal the private data of more than a million users.”That information could be used to identify any individuals who used this site to exercise and express political speech protected under the Constitution’s First Amendment. That should be enough to set alarm bells off in anyone’s mind,” DreamHost’s website explains. The case is set for a hearing this Friday, CBS News confirmed.A U.S. attorney official told CBS News that the office and the Department of Justice would not comment on DreamHost’s blog post.
World US Army commander in Europe honored on Poland’s army day Washington Post 11 hours agoWARSAW, Poland — The Polish president has bestowed a high honor on the U.S. Army commander in Europe as Poland marked its Armed Forces Day with a military parade. President Andrzej Duda bestowed the Commander’s Cross with a Star of the Order of Merit on Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges, the commander of the U.S. Army in Europe. Some 1,500 Polish soldiers then paraded in Warsaw, while fighter planes and other aircraft flew in formation above. Poland’s marching soldiers were joined by a small unit of U.S. troops, some of the thousands who deployed to Poland this year as part of efforts to reassure European countries concerned about possible Russian aggression. U.S. Ambassador to Poland Paul Jones said on Twitter …The activists, many of them women, held up photos of Heather Heyer, the American woman killed when a car plowed into a crowd of people protesting a white nationalist rally in Virginia on the weekend.Beneath the photos were the words: “If you’re not outraged you’re not paying attention. Heather Hayer, victim of fascism August 2017.”“Get fascists off our streets,” read another sign.The aim of the protest was to prevent a group of several dozen extremists from marching in central Warsaw. In recent years Polish far-right groups have become increasingly active, particular on the national holidays. Critics of the ruling conservative Law and Justice party believe the government is emboldening them by failing to denounce them in strong terms.Police forcibly removed the protesters, taking them to a side street and recording their names, but as they did so new protesters arrived to take their places. Police heavily guarded the extremists.Earlier in the day, President Andrzej Duda bestowed a high honor, the Commander’s Cross with a Star of the Order of Merit, on Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges, commander of the U.S. Army in Europe. A spokesman for the president said the award recognizes Hodges’ commitment to Polish-U.S. military cooperation and his role in strengthening the NATO and U.S. presence in Poland.World News AlertsBreaking news from around the world.Some 1,500 Polish soldiers then paraded in Warsaw, while fighter planes and other aircraft flew in formation above.Poland’s marching soldiers were joined by a small unit of U.S. troops, some of the thousands who deployed to Poland this year as part of efforts to reassure European countries concerned about possible Russian aggression.U.S. Ambassador to Poland Paul Jones said on Twitter that the Americans were proud to march alongside their Polish allies.The August 15 holiday celebrates Poland’s landmark victory against the Russian Bolsheviks in the 1920 during the Polish-Soviet war. In the Battle of Warsaw, often called the “Miracle on the Vistula,” outnumbered Polish troops led by Pilsudski defeated an advancing Red Army.