It’s time once again for The Future American’s FAIL OF THE WEEK! Every Saturday, I name a person or group who has spent the past seven days behaving in a particularly idiotic way. Since it’s my belief that idiocy knows no politics, nobody is safe.
This week’s fail was brought to you by the aptly named Jason Ditz of Antiwar.com. Normally I try to avoid discussing how a media outlet covered this or that, but the way he approached this particular story was almost breathtaking in its attempts to absolve the subjects of wrongdoing. Lately, the FBI has been conducting sting operations to entrap people with designs on acts of domestic terrorism, often finding them at protests. I’m the first to say that those are good places to find people with weird political ideas. (No, not all of them. The crazies are minorities, but they flock to protests like moths flock to shit.)
Now, this protest was in Cleveland, and the FBI informant overheard the five suspects in this case “expressing displeasure at demonstrators’ unwillingness to engage in violent acts.” While monitoring them, the informant persuaded the men to plant a (fake) bomb under a bridge, in order to disrupt the workdays of “corporate bigwigs.” Sounds like mens rea, doesn’t it? Read the above link for Ditz’s excuses: “There were no actual explosives involved and the bridge was never in any actual danger.”
So what? If one of them pointed a gun at someone and fired, expecting a bullet to come out, only to find that it was actually a water gun that had been spray-painted black without their knowledge, would they have been trying less hard to kill someone? Unless Ditz is basically saying, “Attempted terrorism. Now, honestly, what is that? Do they give a Nobel Prize for attempted chemistry?”
The fact that the FBI led these guys to try to blow up a bridge is obviously the issue for Ditz. But some people consider that a productive way to make a political point, and some people don’t. They have found that those who don’t, in this case this group of five, would have blown up the bridge if they had the right stuff. That makes them dangerous people. You can object to the FBI’s methods all you like, but if five guys are entrapped in order to save anyone on or near that bridge, they’re good enough for me.
Anyone whoever wrote an article can recognize the framing technique Ditz is using. According to him, the FBI was running the show and these guys were unwitting patsies. They were at least witting enough to say yes. If Ditz and his publishers are as anti-war as they claim to be, the last thing they would want is anyone being able to destroy public infrastructure.