On June 29, a would-be assassin shared on social media details of a location he had just been given by the terrorist mastermind he blindly served.
On Telegram, he shared his intent to kill his targets: "We got these losers surrounded! See you in hell!"
One day earlier, while driving his van, he had spent time live streaming on YouTube, telling viewers there that he was on a "one-way mission" to blow up The National Institute of Standards and Technology in Gaithersburg, Maryland.
He had a detonator, he said, and because the van was self-driving, he would be far away when the vehicle exploded.
Thankfully, on June 28, he didn't follow through with his threat.
On June 29, he began live streaming again.
Once again, he was in his van.
Armed with two firearms, hundreds of rounds of nine-millimeter ammunition, and a machete, the would-be executioner drove into the exclusive D.C. neighborhood to which the terrorist mastermind had directed him.
Close to his destination, he parked his van and set out on foot, still live streaming.
The assassin panned his camera to several sewer grates which, he said, would serve as "entrance points."
"We’re gonna find a way to the tunnels, underneath their houses," he said.
Due to the restricted nature of the residential area where (he) was walking, United States Secret Service uniformed officers began monitoring (him) almost immediately as soon as he began walking around and filming.
After observing Secret Service personnel, (he) veered off the street, into a wooded area, and walked toward Rock Creek. As Secret Service agents approached (him), he began fleeing from them.
Thankfully, on June 29, the armed man was apprehended and arrested.
Domestic Terrorism, Inspired by Trump
The man arrested on June 29 was Taylor Taranto, 37, a known criminal who also took part in the deadly, Trump-inspired assault on the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021.
As NBC News reported:
In recent weeks, Taranto has been living in a van near the Washington jailhouse, according to his social media accounts, and has repeatedly wondered in online posts why he had not yet been arrested over Jan. 6
His targets on June 29—the people he wanted to "see in hell"—were the Obamas and the Podestas.
The person who incited this latest lone-wolf terror mission—and who supplied him the assassination coordinates he was using—was Donald Trump, a man known to have laid the groundwork for multiple terrorist attacks within the United States.
Trump Terrorism's Deadly Trail
The latest threat to Barack Obama and his family isn't the first time one-term loser Trump has inspired a domestic terrorist to act against his far more popular and accomplished predecessor.
In 2019, "MAGA Bomber" Cesar Sayoc was sentenced to 20 years in prison for a terrorist mail-bomb campaign targeting leading critics of Trump, including former President Obama, Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, Robert De Niro and financier George Soros.
Also in 2019, the "El Paso Shooter"—a 21-year-old-white male whose manifesto echoed Trump's anti-immigrant rhetoric—shot dozens of people, killing 23.
During his Presidency, Trump's "Stochastic Terrorism" caused countless fatalities—including a 20% surge in hate crimes. As Newsweek reported in 2020, FBI data showed that under Trump, "hate-motivated murders, largely committed by white supremacists, spiked to their highest number in 28 years."
As Vox wrote in 2018, Trump "enabled conspiracy theories to flourish, including birtherism, QAnon, and Trump’s accusations about the father of Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) being involved in murdering John F. Kennedy... (creating) the perfect environment for anti-Semitism itself to flourish and find new acolytes."
On the anniversary of the 2018 Tree of Life Synagogue shooting—the deadliest antisemitic attack in US history—protesters interrupted a Trump speech with shouts of "Trump endangers Jews."
Trump also provoked countless anti-Asian attacks—from verbal abuse to physical assaults to murders—during the Covid pandemic. Research has documented that Trump's rhetoric and tweets about the "China Virus" contributed to the surge in racist violence, including one shooting in Georgia that left six people dead.
After Trump lost the popular vote for the second time in 2020—and was thrashed in the Electoral College by Joe Biden—Trump "lit the fire" that caused the deadly January 6th terrorist attack on the U.S. Capitol, which also threatened the lives of those who stood in his way, including V.P. Pence and Speaker Pelosi.
Trump's Brand of Stochastic Terrorism Has Infected the GOP
As Mother Jones detailed in September 2022, Trump has made the incitement of violence the go-to tactic of today's fascist-friendly GOP.
After federal agents entered Mar-a-Lago to seize highly classified national security documents, Rep. Paul Gosar tweeted "we must destroy the FBI."
Three days later:
An Ohio man named Ricky Shiffer donned tactical gear, armed himself with an AR-15, and went to the FBI field office in Cincinnati. After failing to breach the facility, he fled and later died in a shootout with law enforcement. Shiffer was a frequent user of Trump’s Truth Social site, where the ex-president has kept up steady attacks on political opponents and the Justice Department and FBI. Shiffer had posted about imminent violence, telling fellow Trump supporters to be ready “to jump into civil war.”
According to Lindsey Graham, simply holding Trump accountable for his criminal actions would be a reason for mob violence.
“If there’s a prosecution of Donald Trump for mishandling classified information,” the South Carolina Republican said on Fox, “there’ll be riots in the street.”
Meanwhile in Florida, Mother Jones reported:
Ron DeSantis is mimicking Trump’s playbook... In a late-August speech, DeSantis evoked violence against a figure despised by the right: Anthony Fauci. “I’m just sick of seeing him,” DeSantis told a roaring crowd. “Someone needs to grab that little elf and chuck him across the Potomac.”
DeSantis has also led the attacks on LGBTQ+ Americans, with rhetoric that helped inspire violence against Drag Queens, such as the Club Q shooting in November, 2022 that killed 5 and injured at least 30 others.
As The Marshall Project reported in March 2023, while overall hate crimes in America rose 11% from 2020 to 2021, hate crimes against Asians and LGBTQ victims rose most of all, up 167% and 70%, respectively.
In his inauguration speech in 2017, Trump promised to bring an end to "American carnage."
But Trump and his his GOP imitators haven't just failed to stop the carnage. They are actively inciting it.
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