So much for the claim of these anarchists being “just an idea”.
As skirmishes erupted in pockets across the country Wednesday – over the election and racial equality – groups mobilized in online chats under different banners to plan post-election activism.
A U.S. military intelligence veteran has connected with the First Amendment Praetorian (1AP), a crowdfunded, volunteer force of military, law enforcement and intel agency professionals offering free security services to small religious and nonprofit gatherings.
But infiltrating the extreme left-wing elements, often referred to as “Antifa,” has been his life’s work since the outfit’s reemergence in politics in 2017.
“It is not just an idea. It is more than an idea,” the former intel professional, referred to as GN for security purposes, told Fox News. “There is a wide collective of groups coordinating. You don’t just randomly show up – with hundreds chanting the same slogans across multiple parts of the country at the same time.”
……According to GN and others who have long “infiltrated” different facets of the online coordination, there is a firm reliance on encrypted apps, initially WhatsApp, but in recent months more secure platforms have been utilized, including Telegram and Signal, as well as Zoom and Skype for broader and less covert discussions.
Robert Lewis, a 1AP founder and former Green Beret, told Fox News that in recent times “video game messaging” was used. Users signed up and chatted through various online gaming platforms, making their groups and channels much more challenging to track down.
The dark web also is used, but while some observers say riot planners perceive it as “safe,” others lament the ineffectiveness of VPNs.
Within the chat groups, GN explained, are “sub chat groups.” Broader national-level discussions are broken down into regions, cities and even localized within cities. Members are said to vary fairly widely – professors, doctors, lawyers, along with a number of former and active military and law enforcement.
“That has been one of the parts I have found most alarming,” he noted. “They use this expertise for further knowledge as to where authorities will be or what their plans are, and for tactical knowledge.”
……And within the groups, there are instructions tailored to each demonstration event – how to dress, how to handle the media, how to handle being arrested – with “communications” experts sending on-the-ground information to those following along in chats during real-time events.
After months of riots, assaults, vandalism, and murder, the DHS finally acknowledged Antifa as a domestic terrorist group.