Ammon Bundy and his group of so-called "militia" men are asking for a lot, and it's not just snacks.
The Bundy occupation of a federal installation in Oregon has now entered its second week, with no sign of and end to the so-called standoff. Publicly, the federal government and the State of Oregon have all but ignored the domestic terrorists, leaving action to the local county sheriff, David Ward. Behind the scenes there are reports the FBI will charge Bundy, but the course of action that was clear from the start was to wait them out until they grow tired of being away from home and family, or starve.
Sheriff Ward last week said even handing the men a Snickers was tantamount to offering them support.
And he was right, because this weekend two major events took place.
The first, an ironic moment on Saturday, when another heavily-armed militia group drove up in a huge convey, surrounded the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, and stepped out of their vehicles brandishing long guns, freaking the Bundy militia the heck out.
That militia group, part of the Pacific Patriots Network, arrived supposedly to offer security and safety for both the Bundy group and everyone else. In other words, they tried to take control, something the Bundy militia was not pleased with. They asked the PPN to go home.
Ironic, isn't it?
UPDATE: Ammon Bundy apparently told newcomers to leave. Seems ironic since he's been asked to leave and won't.— Les Zaitz (@LesZaitz) January 9, 2016
The second major event is that the PPN served both Bundy and law enforcement officials with what they are calling Articles of Resolution, or, in plain speak, a list of demands.
It's unclear if these were drafted with Bundy's input or not, but they bear Bundy's group's name, Citizens for Constitutional Freedom.
But first, before looking at that list of demands, take a look at this list:
The OR militants have updated their wish list. pic.twitter.com/ZmDB3XC4Ag— JJ MacNab (@jjmacnab) January 9, 2016
Yes, the militiamen are asking for boxer briefs, socks, sleeping bags, deodorant, and both Miracle Whip and mayonnaise. (Clearly, there had been a conversation about this.) Also, Marlboro Red 100s, Marlboro Lights 100s, a Midland radio from Walmart, and something called John Radios ham, which we couldn't find online. Oh, and money.
Clearly, they came unprepared:
We can mock this all we want, but for now let's take a look at the other list, the list of real demands:
First, they start off complaining that the local county officials haven't responded to their "Redress of Grievance," so they are now demanding everything in writing – as if they get to call the shots.
Second, regarding the imprisonment of the Hammond ranchers, which supposedly is why they took over the federal installation in the first place, they are demanding the FBI "conduct a criminal investigation into prosecutorial misconduct for unlawfully withholding eyewitness testimony which would have aided in the Hammond’s defense."
Lastly, get this. They are demanding the federal government hand over the wildlife refuge to the county.
"Citizens for Constitutional Freedom request Harney County Government petition and give notice to the Federal Government for the transfer and unconditional return to local control of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge as allowed by Article 4, Section 3, Clause 2," of the U.S. Constitution.
"Harney County Government in equal Partnership with the Burns Paiute Tribe will manage and administer this publicly owned land to the values and vision of the local community."
It should be noted that the Burns Paiute Tribe is a federally recognize Native American tribe. Bundy, who in addition to forming the Citizens for Constitutional Freedom, also subsequently formed the Harney County Committee of Safety.
The Harney County Committee of Safety, on its website, calls Native Americans "savages."
Will the Bundy men get their Miracle Whip? Possibly, but they will not get the federal government to give them federal lands – nor should they. That is federal land, which, although the Bundys don't understand, means it belongs to you and me. To hand it over to a county of 7000 people unprepared to take on that responsibility, would be insane.