Since the January 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol, the FBI has publicly announced it is focused on finding and punishing acts of domestic terrorism by Donald Trump supporters. The public has witnessed the FBI follow through on that plan: Many of those MAGA rioters have been tracked down and arrested, and many defendants are being sentenced to stiff prison sentences by judges who are calling them political traitors to
Now, thanks to an eye-opening and in-depth Newsweek story, the public is learning the FBI created a new category after January 6 it calls anti-government, anti-authority violent extremism, an acronym it calls AGAAVE. The description of AGAAVE, Newsweek noticed, shifted from “furtherance of ideological agendas” to “furtherance of political and/or social agenda.”
“For the first time,” the Newsweek article says, summarizing the purpose of its story, “such groups could be so labeled because of their politics.”
That “subtle change” in definition is a “gigantic departure” for the FBI, the Newsweek story warns, because the FBI is backtracking from previous claims it investigates people for committing acts of violence, not for their political beliefs.
The “subtle” but sobering change even has a new definition at the Department of Justice, “AGAAVE-Other,” which Newsweek said it was making public for the first time in its Oct. 4 story.
Gary Bauer of American Values says the FBI documents confirm our federal government, for the first time, considers Americans' belief a dangerous threat.
“There are people in important and powerful positions in our government that are using the laws and protections that we gave them over the years to protect us from foreign enemies,” he warns. “And they're using those laws and those institutions to protect themselves against us.”
Jenna Ellis, a former attorney for Trump, read the Newsweek story. She concluded the FBI really is marrying conservative political views with domestic terrorism.
“They see us as a threat to their power instead of citizens exercising rights that government is obligated to protect,” she tells AFN.
Among its other findings, Newsweek says an FBI report submitted to Congress in June claimed "threats" from Trump supporters have increased, but FBI data reviewed by Newsweek shows its January 6 investigations have slowed down.
Elsewhere in the Newsweek story, an anonymous FBI official agreed the “Other” refers to Trump supporters but told Newsweek “Other” can apply to violent Democrats, too. In “practical terms,” he confessed, it refers to MAGA people.
A second anonymous person, identified as a senior intelligence officer, told Newsweek the FBI recognized “Trump’s army” represented a violent threat after January 6, which was true at the time. It’s a “trickier question” to ask if they also represent a threat to the country itself and could pull the country into a civil war, he said, which is not the FBI’s job to answer.
“We’re crossed the Rubicon,” that person told Newsweek.