2013 August » ADL Blogs
August 23, 2013 1

Plot To Kidnap, Kill Police Officers Uncovered in Las Vegas

Offi­cers from the Las Vegas Metro Police Depart­ment have arrested David Allan Brutsche, 42, and Devon Camp­bell New­man, 67, for allegedly plot­ting to kid­nap and kill police offi­cers in Las Vegas.david-allan-brutsche-sovereign-citizen

Accord­ing to police, the two sus­pects were adher­ents of the sov­er­eign cit­i­zen move­ment who sought to abduct a police offi­cer while the offi­cer made a traf­fic stop, then later kill him or her.    The two allegedly video­taped a police traf­fic stop in prepa­ra­tion and mod­i­fied a bed­room in a vacant home to cre­ate a makeshift cell in which a kid­napped offi­cer could be detained.  After “try­ing” the offi­cer in a court of their own mak­ing, they allegedly planned to kill the offi­cer and dis­pose of the body.  Both Brutche and New­man report­edly made state­ments in which they said they would be will­ing to shoot law enforce­ment officers.

How­ever, Brutsche and New­man were unaware that some of the peo­ple whom they thought were accom­plices were actu­ally police offi­cers con­duct­ing an under­cover inves­ti­ga­tion.  Police have charged them with con­spir­acy to com­mit mur­der, con­spir­acy to com­mit kid­nap­ping, and attempted first-degree kid­nap­ping with use of a deadly weapon. The sov­er­eign cit­i­zen move­ment is extremely anti-government in nature and adher­ents of the move­ment have been involved in a num­ber of police killings and plots against police and gov­ern­ment offi­cials in recent years.

After her arrest, New­man, who for sev­eral years has been the local pub­lic rela­tions direc­tor for the Church of Sci­en­tol­ogy in Las Vegas, gave jail­house inter­views with local tele­vi­sion reporters in which she denied involve­ment in any plot to kid­nap or kill offi­cers, say­ing she only intended to video them.  The Sci­en­tol­ogy move­ment as a whole does not have any sig­nif­i­cant asso­ci­a­tion with the sov­er­eign cit­i­zen movement.

New­man told reporters that she met Brutsche while he was giv­ing out water bot­tles on the Las Vegas strip in exchange for dona­tions.  Police have, in fact, arrested Brutsche more than once for obstruc­tive use of a pub­lic side­walk and oper­at­ing with­out a busi­ness license.  On a more seri­ous note, Brutsche is a reg­is­tered sex offender with felony con­vic­tions in Cal­i­for­nia for inde­cent expo­sure and las­civ­i­ous acts with a three-year-old child.

In Octo­ber 2012, Brutsche filed a sov­er­eign cit­i­zen “Affi­davit of Sta­tus” with the Clark County Recorder’s Office in which he declared him­self as “one of the peo­ple of these united [sic] States of Amer­ica” and a “liv­ing, breath­ing sen­tient human being on the land” exempt from “any and all iden­ti­fi­ca­tions, treat­ments, and require­ments as any ARTIFICIAL PERSON pur­suant to any process, law, code, reg­u­la­tion, ordi­nance, statute or any color thereof.”  In the doc­u­ment Brutsche also declared that “pub­lic ser­vants” who vio­late their oaths of office “com­mit a Treason.”

Two months later, Brutsche filed a sec­ond doc­u­ment that seemed to antic­i­pate future encoun­ters with law enforce­ment.  The doc­u­ment, titled “Sched­ule of Fees for David Allen Brutsche,” listed fees Brutsche would appar­ently attempt to charge police for any inter­ac­tion with him.  For exam­ple, the fee for “speak­ing to a cop” was “20 min­utes for free” then $200 per hour.  If some­one impounded his vehi­cle, the fee was “$2000 or 1 troy ounce of gold plus cost of recov­ery and any damages.”

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August 23, 2013 0

100 Years Later, Anti-Semitism Around Leo Frank Case Abounds

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Leo Frank

Anti-Semites are using mis­lead­ing web­sites to exploit the 100th anniver­sary of the Leo Frank case and to pro­mote anti-Jewish views.

On August 25, 1913, Leo Frank was falsely con­victed of mur­der­ing Mary Pha­gan, whose body was found in the fac­tory he man­aged in Atlanta. A mob later lynched Frank after the gov­er­nor of Geor­gia com­muted his death sen­tence to life impris­on­ment. The Frank case was a sem­i­nal moment in Amer­i­can Jew­ish his­tory when the Jew­ish com­mu­nity united to fight against the anti-Semitism that was ram­pant at that time. 

A num­ber of web­sites, osten­si­bly pro­vid­ing infor­ma­tion about Leo Frank actu­ally use decep­tive means to tell their ver­sion of the cir­cum­stances sur­round­ing the Frank case. These sites pro­vide doc­u­ments and tes­ti­mony from that time, but their aim is to cre­ate con­fu­sion and per­versely to accuse Jews of reverse racism. They claim that Jews used the Frank case to under­mine whites, espe­cially in the South.

One site is par­tic­u­larly mis­lead­ing. Call­ing itself “The 1913 Leo Frank Case and Trial Research Library,” the site con­tains numer­ous doc­u­ments from the Frank case. How­ever, the “About” sec­tion of the site reveals the real impe­tus for its cre­ation. The site, which is reg­is­tered anony­mously, asserts that the Frank case was one of the events of 1913 that started “the Birth of the Jew­ish Race War Against European-Americans.”  Accord­ing to the author of the sec­tion, the Frank case led to the cre­ation of a “Jew­ish lobby” and “became a polit­i­cal and social front for sub­vert­ing the major­ity pop­u­la­tion of Gen­tiles by a tiny dis­sent­ing minor­ity of Jews.” The author also accuses Jews of con­trol­ling the government.

Another decep­tive Leo Frank web­site is reg­is­tered to neo-Nazi Kevin Strom. Strom was a leader in the National Alliance and then the National Van­guard, two neo-Nazi orga­ni­za­tions, until he was con­victed on child pornog­ra­phy charges sev­eral years ago. This site cites anti-Semitic works as resources on the Frank case. Strom also pro­motes the arti­cles of “Mark Cohen” on National Van­guard, a neo-Nazi site he runs. Accord­ing to a July 2012 arti­cle on National Van­guard, “Mark Cohen” is “the nom de guerreof a per­son who writes exten­sively about the Leo Frank case.  Arti­cles attrib­uted to Cohen, which assert that Frank is guilty of the Pha­gan mur­der, appear on numer­ous extrem­ist sites.

There are other web­sites on Frank that are also mis­lead­ing. “The Amer­i­can Mer­cury,” an extreme right-wing site with anti-Semitic con­tent, is run­ning a series of arti­cles that pro­mote con­spir­acy the­o­ries about the Frank case. There is also a “Leo Frank” Face­book page that pre­tends to be a per­sonal pro­file page of Frank. This page disin­gen­u­ously lists a num­ber of Jew­ish causes but pro­motes deroga­tory arti­cles on Frank that appear on anti-Semitic websites.

The goal of these fraud­u­lent web­sites is clear. They are using decep­tive means to attack Leo Frank and the Jew­ish community’s efforts to fight back against anti-Semitism.

In the News – The For­ward (8/20/13) “Neo-Nazis Use Leo Frank Case for Anti-Semitic Pro­pa­ganda Push”

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August 21, 2013 2

Al Jazeera America Debut Featuring Stephen Walt Casts Doubt Over Network’s Objectivity

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Stephen Walt (right) appears on Al Jazeera America

August 20 marked the much antic­i­pated pre­miere of Al Jazeera Amer­ica, the Qatari government-backed 24-hour news broad­caster that has sought to make greater inroads in the Amer­i­can mar­ket in recent years. Although the net­work has striven to assure the pub­lic that it will present the news in an objec­tive man­ner, Al Jazeera America’s debut news seg­ment cast imme­di­ate doubt over its impartiality.

Their pro­gram on Tues­day fea­tured an inter­view with anti-Israel pro­fes­sor and author Stephen Walt dis­cussing the tur­moil in Egypt. Al Jazeera’s choice of Walt as its first guest raises early ques­tions regard­ing the network’s claimed inten­tion to pro­vide the Amer­i­can pub­lic sto­ries that are “impar­tial, accu­rate and comprehensive.” 

Stephen Walt, an Inter­na­tional Affairs Pro­fes­sor at the Kennedy School of Gov­ern­ment, is best known for his anti-Israel posi­tion as described in his 2007 book, “The Israel Lobby and U.S. For­eign Pol­icy,” co-authored with John Mearsheimer. Walt is a pro­po­nent of a one-state solu­tion to the Israeli-Palestinian con­flict, and has sev­eral times accused the pro-Israel lobby in the U.S. of exer­cis­ing exces­sive power to sti­fle crit­i­cism of Israel.

Prior to the launch of Al Jazeera Amer­ica, the net­work received con­sid­er­able praise from jour­nal­ists, such as Soledad O’Brien and John Seigen­thaler, who were assured that the new sta­tion would focus more on Amer­i­can issues and less on opin­ions and inter­na­tional news. Accord­ing to Ehab Al Shi­habi, Al Jazeera America’s act­ing chief exec­u­tive, “Al Jazeera Amer­ica will air fact-based, unbi­ased and in-depth news.” 

Since the Qatar-based net­work announced the cre­ation of Al Jazeera Amer­ica in early 2013, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) expressed its ongo­ing con­cerns about the pan-Arab satel­lite network’s “trou­bling record” of pro­vid­ing a plat­form to all man­ner of vir­u­lent anti-Israel and even anti-Semitic extrem­ists. Al Jazeera America’s deci­sion to fea­ture Walt on its inau­gural broad­cast was not an aus­pi­cious beginning.

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