Sunday, September 15, 2002

It's almost become accepted historical fact that the 'Ruby Ridge' incident somehow involved Janet Reno and the then governor of Arkansas. In fact, the Washington Post still says as much.

So, just as an occasional public service announcement - If you have any issues with the Ruby Ridge incident, take it up with the ATF and Justice Departments which were at the tail end of 12 years of being under Republican administrations.

This person thinks Janet was involved.

This person thinks Janet was involved.

This person thinks Janet was involved

This person thinks Janet was involved. thinks Janet was involved.

As quote by Media Research Center (top one), Newsweek thinks Janet was involved.

James Ridgeway of the Village Voice seems to think Janet was involved.

Carole Simpson at ABCNews thinks Janet was involved.

Accuracy in Media seems to think that Janet was involved.

Deroy Murdock of Cato implies, though doesn't quite state, that Janet was involved.

As do the numerous people who constantly say Waco, Ruby Ridge and Clinton and/or Reno in the same breath.

UPDATE: The point of my post was not to rehash the whole Ruby Ridge thing, or to discuss Janet Reno's after the fact involvement - merely to point out that it has become accepted fact that she was AG at the time it actually happened. But, David Neiwert said this in my ocmments:

Jay Caruso:

I realize that some people think some separatist old coot with a shack somewhere in the mountains of Idaho is a clear and present danger to the national security of the United States, but nobody was killed until they were descended upon Lou Horiuchi and his merry band of snipers.

This is factually false. Bill Degan was part of a Marshals Service surveillance team that was trying to find out why video cameras placed near the Weaver property weren't working. Weaver had been arrested once before without incident (thanks to an ingenious ruse) and they hoped to repeat the trick. Instead, it blew up in their faces when Sammy Weaver's dog Striker detected their presence.

The rest is history, of course. But Horiuchi and the rest of the FBI paramilitary team did not arrive until the next day. And that, of course, is when the affair blew even further out of control.

And while it's true that Randy Weaver himself didn't pose much of a threat to anyone's security. However, some of his friends were a different story; the reason he met that ATF informant is that they had been hanging out together at Aryan Nations, and they subsequently got together with a third friend who was plotting to kidnap Barbara Walters' daughter (no shit) and devote the proceeds to the race-war cause. Finally, the only reason the ATF wanted to squeeze him for info was that they had reason to believe Weaver's friends the Trochmanns were running guns over the Canadian border. They wanted Randy to inform for them, so they tried to squeeze him. Obviously, it didn't work.

Ruby Ridge was a gigantic clusterfuck, but don't paint Randy Weaver as the aggrieved innocent, please. As someone who lived in the neighborhood for many years, I can tell you the criminal activity that exuded from the compound at Hayden Lake fully deserved every bit of the law-enforcement scrutiny it got.

What was inexcusable was the FBI's miserable failure to assess the actual threat level correctly and to respond accordingly; instead, it let its SWAT team call all the shots, with the full backing of some very arrogant high-level bureaucrats (especially Potts), which was a recipe for disaster.

Finally, Janet Reno was not part of any "whitewash." She basically rubber-stamped Louis Freeh's internal investigation, but she also insisted on punishment for Michael Kahoe, Danny Coulson and Potts, and got it.