The Oath Keepers had been based by Stewart Rhodes in 2009 after President Obama’s inauguration, with calls by Rhodes for a brand new “civil war” to happen in our nation. In recent times, with the rise of Donald Trump and the white supremacist basis of the GOP changing into fully flagrant, the Oath Keepers have been capable of reemerge from their doomsday-prepper caves in full jilted-bigot regalia. Being concerned with the Oath Keepers is to be concerned with a home terrorist group, birthed out of racism in opposition to our nation’s first, and up to now solely, Black president.
In response to Gothamist, there are not less than three New York public officers listed within the membership logs who declare they’re not energetic members of the group. Their names weren’t printed. Nevertheless, the responses reporters obtained after they tried to contact varied people on the membership logs confirmed an actual caginess that doesn’t typically indicate innocence. A kind of matches was an energetic Staten Island officer who works within the Strategic Response Group—a bunch “deployed to quell protests, together with these that erupted in New York Metropolis final yr in response to the homicide of George Floyd.”
When WNYC/Gothamist referred to as the cellphone quantity related to that membership entry, a person answered however didn’t verify whether or not or not he was the officer in query. When requested if he was a member of the Oath Keepers, the person paused and requested how his quantity was obtained. He then declined to reply additional questions.
Oswego County, NY’s 25th District Legislator Ralph Edward Stacy Jr., a Republican (gasp/eye roll), can also be on the leaked membership record. He informed Gothamist that it has been a really very long time since he had stuffed out a membership for the never-not-racist-and-fascist group, however that he hadn’t interacted with the group for over a decade.
“I don’t condone what occurred on the Capitol constructing and was not concerned in what occurred,” stated Stacy, who stated he had by no means spoken to anybody concerned with the group and made clear he had not participated within the Capitol riot. “I actually do consider in the fitting to peaceable meeting to protest one’s trigger, however I don’t consider in any kind of felony trespass or felony exercise as a way to an finish.”
In March, New York Daily News reported that active-duty officer Sal Greco, who was getting cash from Trump surrogate and super-sketchy wealthy man Roger Stone, was being investigated for his half as a attainable under-the-table bodyguard for Stone. Stone used Oath Keepers as bodyguards throughout his time in D.C. across the Jan. 6 revolt. The Day by day Information report related Greco to the Oath Keepers circumstantially and thru an odd Venmo account.
Former Republican candidate for New York’s sixth Congressional district, Thomas Zmich, informed Gothamist/WNYC that, whereas he had been a part of the New York chapter of the Oath Keepers, that was a suuuuuper very long time in the past. [Cough] Three years in the past, the New York chapter closed, which is when Zmich says he stopped being within the group. Whereas in Trump years which will really feel like a lifetime in the past, within the goal actuality the remainder of us reside in, three years in the past is three years in the past.
None of that is shocking to readers round these components. One of many bigger nationwide teams of fascist-wannabe seditionists congregated at our nation’s Capitol on January 6 of this yr. Legislation enforcement officers who fought bravely to defend our democracy testified in open court as to the frustration and risks they noticed that day—together with some insurrectionist cops. Because the weeks have handed, more and more evidence has shown that Oath Keepers, amongst others, were very much involved in a conspiracy that day.
In latest weeks, the FBI has made it clear that they’re pursuing a “seditious conspiracy” investigation. Oath Keepers have cut plea deals and more than a dozen other Oath Keepers are looking down the barrel of whatever the snitches and prosecutors have on them. This investigation is straight related to the Oath Keepers’ presence in Washington D.C. on Jan. 6.