A review of FBI documents from its surveillance of the Black Lives Matter collective reveals that the agency believed that “Black Identity extremists” would target the police and the 2016 presidential conventions, Al Jazeera reported.
“The FBI assesses it is very likely Black Identity Extremists perceptions of police brutality against African Americans spurred an increase in premeditated retaliatory lethal violence against law enforcement and will likely serve as justification for such violence,” an Aug. 3 report from the agency stated.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the FBI had been monitoring BLM protests and circulated information in 2016 to law enforcement agencies about possible threats, according to internal documents obtained through a lawsuit filed by the Center for Constitutional Rights and the Color of Change and shared with Al Jazeera. Those documents revealed that the FBI warned of attacks against law enforcement by Black radical groups after Micah Xavier Johnson shot and killed five Dallas police officers in July 2016—even though the agency said Johnson acted alone and had no ties to BLM. The FBI also feared that that Black radical groups would launch violent attacks on the Democratic and Republican National Conventions in 2016.
The FBI produced a 12-page report in August about groups that the agency views as Black extremists. Attorney General Jeff Sessions denied seeing the report when asked by Black lawmakers at a congressional hearing. That denial prompted Rep. Karen Bass (D-Calif.) to ask him whether the FBI produced a similar report on the Ku Klux Klan and other White supremacist groups. Sessions said he is unaware of a similar study about White hate groups. There has also been perplexity and outrage by the agency’s use of the term “Black supremacist extremist” to describe BLM.
Thousands Protest During #MillionsMarchNYC Against Police Brutality
1. Thousands march together on their way to the NYPD headquarters.Source:Twitter 1 of 17
2. Thousands gather near the NYPD headquarters.Source:Twitter 2 of 17
3. A protester holds up a sign to stop police brutality.Source:Splash 3 of 17
4. Kevin Liles, Russell Simmons, and Nas help lead the march in NYC.Source:Instagram 4 of 17
5. Protestors march up 5th Avenue.Source:Twitter 5 of 17
6. Thousands gather in Washington Square Park before marching uptown.Source:Instagram 6 of 17
7. Protestors lead by holding up a ‘Black Lives Matter’ banner.Source:Twitter 7 of 17
8. Picketed versions of the victims of police brutality are held up during the march.Source:Twitter 8 of 17
9. The Brooklyn Bridge gets shut down by protestors.Source:Twitter 9 of 17
10. A protestor holds up a focused ‘We Demand Justice’ signSource:Instagram 10 of 17
11. Santa Con participants face the interrupting protests happening through the streets.Source:Twitter 11 of 17
12. An artist participates in the protest through creative expression.Source:Splash 12 of 17
13. Thousands of different ethnicities and ages come together for the protests.13 of 17
14. Thousands gather in Washington Square Park before the march.Source:Instagram 14 of 17
15. A protestor marches while in chains.Source:Twitter 15 of 17
16. Thousands march up 5th Avenue.Source:Twitter 16 of 17
17. Thousands march up 5th Avenue towards Union Square.Source:Twitter 17 of 17
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(Source: Al Jazeera)
(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)