Connect with us

Watch: President Obama’s Full Remarks On Nominations Of Chuck Hagel And John Brennan



Today President Obama officially nominated Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense, and John Brennan as CIA Director. Below is the video of today’s event, and the President’s full remarks via the White House.

Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release January 7, 2013


East Room

1:15 P.M. EST

THE PRESIDENT: Good afternoon, everybody. Please have a seat. As President and Commander-in-Chief, my most solemn obligation is the security of the American people. Over the past four years, we’ve met that responsibility by ending the war in Iraq, and beginning a transition in Afghanistan; by decimating the al Qaeda core and taking out Osama bin Laden; by disrupting terrorist plots and saving countless American lives.

Among an outstanding national security team, I am especially grateful to Leon Panetta, who has led the CIA and our military with incredible skill. Leon, after nearly five decades of service, you have more than earned the right to return to civilian life. I’ll have much more to say about Leon’s distinguished service in the days ahead. Today, I simply want to convey both to you and to Sylvia the eternal gratitude of the entire nation. Thank you so much, Leon.

I also want to thank Michael Morell, who has earned the admiration of all of us who’ve worked with him across government and here in the White House. In moments of transition, he’s guided the CIA with a steady hand as Acting Director — not once, but twice. And he is a consummate professional. As I said, everybody in the White House who works with him, everybody across agencies who works with him considers him truly to be one of our most outstanding national security team members. And so, Michael, on behalf of all of us, thank you and Mary Beth for your continued service.

As these leaders know, the work of protecting our nation is never done, and we’ve still got much to do: Ending the war in Afghanistan and caring for those who have borne the battle; preparing for the full range of threats, from the unconventional to the conventional, including things like cyber security; and within our military, continuing to ensure that our men and women in uniform can serve the country they love, no matter who they love.

To help meet the challenges of our time, I’m proud to announce my choice for two key members of my national security team — Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense and John Brennan for Director of the Central Intelligence Agency.

Chuck Hagel is the leader that our troops deserve. He is an American patriot. He enlisted in the Army and volunteered for Vietnam. As a young private, and then a sergeant, he served with honor, alongside his own brother. When Chuck was hit by shrapnel, his brother saved him. When his brother was injured by a mine, Chuck risked his life to pull him to safety. To this day, Chuck bears the scars — and the shrapnel — from the battles he fought in our name.

Chuck Hagel’s leadership of our military would be historic. He’d be the first person of enlisted rank to serve as Secretary of Defense, one of the few secretaries who have been wounded in war, and the first Vietnam veteran to lead the department. As I saw during our visits together to Afghanistan and Iraq, in Chuck Hagel our troops see a decorated combat veteran of character and strength. They see one of their own.

Chuck is a champion of our troops and our veterans and our military families. As a leader at the VA, he fought to give our veterans the benefits they deserved. As head of the USO, he devoted himself to caring for our troops. Having studied under the GI Bill himself, he helped lead the fight for the Post-9/11 GI Bill so today’s returning heroes can get their education, too. Having co-chaired my Intelligence Advisory Board, he knows that our armed forces collect, analyze, and depend on good intelligence.

And Chuck recognizes that American leadership is indispensable in a dangerous world. I saw this in our travels together across the Middle East. He understands that America stands strongest when we stand with allies and with friends. As a successful businessman, he also knows that even as we make tough fiscal choices, we have to do so wisely, guided by our strategy, and keep our military the strongest fighting force the world has ever known.

Maybe most importantly, Chuck knows that war is not an abstraction. He understands that sending young Americans to fight and bleed in the dirt and mud, that’s something we only do when it’s absolutely necessary. “My frame of reference,” he has said, is “geared towards the guy at the bottom who’s doing the fighting and the dying.” With Chuck, our troops will always know, just like Sergeant Hagel was there for his own brother, Secretary Hagel will be there for you.

And finally, Chuck represents the bipartisan tradition that we need more of in Washington. For his independence and commitment to consensus, he’s earned the respect of national security and military leaders, Republicans and Democrats — including me. In the Senate, I came to admire his courage and his judgment, his willingness to speak his mind — even if it wasn’t popular, even if it defied the conventional wisdom.

And that’s exactly the spirit I want on my national security team — a recognition that when it comes to the defense of our country, we are not Democrats or Republicans; we are Americans. Each of us has a responsibility, Chuck has said, to be guided not by the interest of our party or our President even, but by “the interests of our country.”

So, Chuck, I thank you and Lilibet for agreeing to serve once more in the interests of our country.

Now, when I’m on the subject of patriots, let me say a few words about John Brennan. In John Brennan, the men and women of the CIA will have the leadership of one of our nation’s most skilled and respected intelligence professionals — not to mention that unique combination of smarts and strength that he claims comes from growing up in New Jersey. (Laughter.)

A 25-year veteran of the CIA, John knows what our national security demands — intelligence that provides policymakers with the facts, strong analytic insights, and a keen understanding of a dynamic world. Given his extensive experience and travels — which include, by the way, traveling through the Arabian Peninsula where he camped with tribesmen in the desert — John has an invaluable perspective on the forces — the history, the culture, the politics, economics, the desire for human dignity driving so much of the changes in today’s world.

Having held senior management, analytic, and operational positions at the agency, John is committed to investing in the range of intelligence capabilities we need — technical and human. He literally built — and then led — the National Counterterrorism Center. And he knows the risks that our intelligence professionals face every day. John has lost colleagues and friends — heroes whose stars now grace that memorial wall at Langley.

For the last four years, as my Advisor for Counterterrorism and Homeland Security, John developed and has overseen our comprehensive counterterrorism strategy — a collaborative effort across the government, including intelligence and defense and homeland security, and law enforcement agencies.

And so think about the results. More al Qaeda leaders and commanders have been removed from the battlefield than at any time since 9/11. Their communications, recruiting, training, finances are all under enormous strain — all of which makes it harder to plan and carry out large-scale attacks against our homeland. And our entire team, including our exceptional Director of National Intelligence, Jim Clapper, will remain relentless against al Qaeda and its affiliates.

In all this work, John has been tireless. People here in the White House work hard. But John is legendary, even in the White House, for working hard. (Laughter.) He is one of the hardest-working public servants I’ve ever seen. I’m not sure he’s slept in four years. (Laughter.) When I was on Martha’s Vineyard, John came and did the press briefing — this is in summer, it’s August, he’s in full suit and tie. And one of the reporters asked him, don’t you ever get any down time? And John said, “I don’t do down time.” (Laughter.) He’s not even smiling now. (Laughter.)

There’s another reason I value John so much, and that is his integrity and his commitment to the values that define us as Americans. He has worked to embed our efforts in a strong legal framework. He understands we are a nation of laws. In moments of debate and decision, he asks the tough question and he insists on high and rigorous standards. Time and again, he’s spoken to the American people about our counterterrorism policies because he recognizes we have a responsibility to be [as] open and transparent as possible.

And so, John, you’ve been one of my closest advisors. You’ve been a great friend. I am deeply grateful for your extraordinary service. I’m even more grateful for Kathy’s willingness to put up with you. And I’m grateful to both of you for your willingness to take this assignment.

Today, I can say to the men and women of the CIA: In Director John Brennan you will have one of your own; a leader who knows you; who cares for you, deeply; and who will fight for you every single day. And you’ll have a leader who has my complete confidence and my complete trust.

As I said, the work of defending our nation is never done. My number-one criteria in making these decisions was simple — who is going to do the best job in securing America. These two leaders have dedicated their lives to protecting our country. I’m confident they will do an outstanding job. I urge the Senate to confirm them as soon as possible so we can keep our nation secure and the American people safe.

And so, Chuck and John — congratulations.

And with that, I want to invite each of these leaders on stage to say a few words, starting with Mr. Leon Panetta.

SECRETARY PANETTA: First of all, let me express my deepest gratitude to the President for giving me the honor and the privilege of serving in your administration these last four years as Director of the CIA and now as Secretary of Defense. I have been extremely proud to be part of your national security team, Mr. President, and to be proud of what it has accomplished in your first term.

Looking ahead to the second term, I want to commend President Obama on his decision to nominate Chuck Hagel as the next Secretary of the Defense. And let me also add, as former Director of the CIA, to commend the President for his choice of John Brennan. I have had the opportunity to work with John on counterterrorism issues these last four years. He knows the CIA. He will be a strong leader of that great intelligence agency.

I’ve also known Chuck for a long period of time as well, and I had the opportunity to work with him closely — particularly in his capacity as Chairman of the President’s Intelligence Advisory Board. I greatly appreciate the work he has done to strengthen our intelligence enterprise. It has been extremely important to our ability to improve our intelligence capabilities. And as Secretary of Defense, I also benefited from his work when he served on our Defense Policy Board.

Chuck Hagel is a patriot, he’s a decorated combat veteran, and he is a dedicated public servant. I believe his experience, his judgment, his deep understanding of the security issues facing this country make him the right choice to be Secretary of Defense.

As for me, after close to 50 years of serving the American people — began in 1964 when I served as a first lieutenant in the United States Army, and then in both the legislative and executive branch positions in Washington — the time has come for me to return to my wife Sylvia, our three sons, their families, our six grandchildren, and my walnut farm — (laughter) — dealing with a different set of nuts. (Laughter.)

I want to deeply thank my family for giving me the fullest measure of love and support during my many absences from home throughout my long career in public service. But I will leave Washington with a very deep sense of pride in what we have accomplished during these last four years being on the President’s national security team.

As both Director of the CIA and as Secretary of Defense, I have always believed that our fundamental mission is to keep America safe, to keep America secure. And because of the outstanding dedication of our intelligence and military professionals, America is safer and more secure than it was four years ago, and we have reached a turning point after more than a decade of war.

And on that, as we’ve reached that turning point, we’ve developed a new defense strategy for the 21st century. We have, with John’s leadership, decimated al Qaeda’s leadership and weakened their effort to attack this country. We have brought wars in Iraq and we will bring the war in Afghanistan to an honorable conclusion. We’ve opened up opportunities for all Americans to serve in our military. And we continue to strongly support our forces, their families, and our wounded warriors. These are some of the achievements that I am proud of.

Let me close by expressing my profound gratitude to the outstanding team of military and civilian staff and leaders that I’ve had the honor to serve with at the Department of Defense and at the White House. In particular, let me deeply thank the outstanding men and women in uniform, who I’ve had the privilege to serve and to lead, those who put their lives on the line every day on distant battlefields for this country. Their sacrifices teach us that freedom is not free; a strong democracy depends on a strong defense. But you can also not have a strong and stable defense without a strong and stable democracy.

As we continue to confront strategic challenges and fiscal austerity, my hope for the future is that the sense of duty our servicemembers and their families exhibit every day inspires the leaders of this nation to have the courage to do what is right, to achieve the American Dream, to give our children a better life, and to build a more secure future.

SENATOR HAGEL: Thank you, Mr. President. I’m honored by your trust and your confidence in me, and not unmindful of the immense responsibilities that go with it. I want to also acknowledge my wife, Lilibet; my daughter, Allyn; and our son, Ziller, who is in Chicago today, we hope, back attending his first day of classes at DePaul University. (Laughter.)

And to my friend, Leon Panetta, thank you for your extraordinary service to our country over so many years in so many capacities. You are one of the premier public servants of our time. To follow you at the Department of Defense will be a most challenging task, but I will try to live up to the standards that you, Bob Gates and others have set for this job and this nation.

Let me also express my deep appreciation and congratulations to my friend, John Brennan, and to also acknowledge the President’s confidence and trust in John Brennan. Thank you, John, for your service and what you will continue to do for our country. To Mike Morell — who I have gotten to know over the years not just serving on the Senate Intelligence Committee, but also, as the President has noted, the privilege of co-chairing the President’s Intelligence Advisory Board with former Senator Dave Boren — thank you, Mike, for your continued service.

Mr. President, I am grateful for this opportunity to serve our country again and especially its men and women in uniform and their families. These are people who give so much to this nation every day with such dignity and selflessness. This is particularly important at a time as we complete our mission in Afghanistan and support the troops and military families who have sacrificed so much over more than a decade of war.

I’m also grateful for an opportunity to help continue to strengthen our country and strengthen our country’s alliances, and advance global freedom, decency, and humanity as we help build a better world for all mankind. I will always do my best. I will do my best for our country, for those I represent at the Pentagon, and for all our citizens. And, Mr. President, I will always give you my honest and most informed counsel. Thank you very much.

ACTING DIRECTOR MORELL: Mr. President, thank you for your very kind remarks, and thank you for the trust that you placed in me when you asked me to be Acting Director twice.

I have had the honor of knowing and working with John Brennan for the last 20 years. We have worked particularly closely the last three years. John Brennan is a intelligence professional with deep experience in our business, a public servant with extraordinary dedication, and a man of deep integrity. With Senate confirmation, I know that he will be an outstanding Director of the Central Intelligence Agency.

As the President noted, John started his career at CIA and spent nearly a quarter century. So this is a homecoming for John.

John, on behalf of the talented and dedicated men and women of CIA, it is my deep honor to say, welcome home.

MR. BRENNAN: Mr. President, it is indeed a tremendous honor to be nominated to be the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. The women and men of the CIA are among the most dedicated, courageous, selfless and hardworking individuals who have ever served this country. At great personal risk and sacrifice, they have made countless invaluable contributions to our national security and to the safety and security of all Americans. Most times, their successes will never be known outside the hallowed halls of Langley and the Oval Office.

Leading the agency in which I served for 25 years would be the greatest privilege as well as the greatest responsibility of my professional life. Mr. President, I want to thank you for your confidence in me, but even more for your confidence and constant support to the CIA and to those who serve in the intelligence community. They need and deserve the support of all of their fellow Americans, especially at a time of such tremendous national security challenges.

If confirmed as Director, I will make it my mission to ensure that the CIA has the tools it needs to keep our nation safe, and that its work always reflects the liberties, the freedoms and the values that we hold so dear.

I’m especially proud to stand here today with such patriots as Leon Panetta, Chuck Hagel and Michael Morell. It was a tremendous honor to serve with Leon over the past four years, and I very much look forward to the opportunity and privilege to serve with another of America’s great patriots, Chuck Hagel.

And I am especially proud and touched to be able to stand here today with my close friend and colleague, Michael Morell, who epitomizes what it means to be an intelligence professional. Michael’s leadership at the CIA, as well as his 32-year career, has been nothing short of exemplary. Michael, I very much look forward to working with you in the weeks, months, and years ahead.

And I also look forward to working with Congress, as our national security rests on the ability of the executive and legislative branches of our government to work as a team. While the intelligence profession oftentimes demands secrecy, it is critically important that there be a full and open discourse on intelligence matters with the appropriate elected representatives of the American people. Although I consider myself neither a Republican nor a Democrat, I very much look forward to working closely with those on both sides of the aisle.

Finally, and most importantly, to my wife Kathy; to my children Kyle, Jaclyn, Kelly; to my parents in New Jersey, a shout-out — (laughter) — Owen, who is 92 and my mom, Dorothy, who is 91; my brother Tom and my sister Kathleen and my Jersey roots: I could not be where I am today without their love, their patience, their understanding and their support. And there is no way that I can ever repay that, except to say I think I’m going to need it for a little bit longer. (Laughter.)

So again, Mr. President, I am deeply grateful for this opportunity. It will be bittersweet to leave all of my close colleagues and friends here at the White House and at the national security staff, who I have come to work with and respect so deeply over the last four years.

But if confirmed by the Senate, I will consider it to be the honor of my life to serve as the 21st Director of the Central Intelligence Agency.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, these are four outstanding individuals. We are grateful to all of them. I want, in particular, to thank Mike Morell and Leon Panetta for their extraordinary service. And I just want to repeat, I hope that the Senate will act on these confirmations promptly. When it comes to national security, we don’t like to leave a lot of gaps between the time that one set of leaders transitions out and another transitions in. So we need to get moving quickly on this.

The final point I will make: One of the reasons that I am so confident that Chuck Hagel is going to be an outstanding Secretary of Defense and John Brennan is going to be an outstanding Director of the Central Intelligence Agency is they understand that we are only successful because of the folks up and down the line in these respective institutions — the folks on the ground who are oftentimes putting their lives at risk for us, and are oftentimes at great remove from Washington and its politics.

To have those who have been in the field, who have been in the heat of battle, who understand the consequences of decisions that we make in this town and how it has an impact and ramifications for everybody who actually has to execute our national security strategies, that’s something invaluable. It will provide me the kinds of insights that I need in making very difficult decisions, but it will also mean that these folks are going to be looking out for the people who work for them. And that’s something that, I think, in these leadership positions is absolutely critical.

So I’m looking forward to working with these two gentlemen. They are going to be outstanding.

Thank you very much, everybody. (Applause.)

END 1:42 P.M. EST

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.

NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.


‘Anathema to the Soul of Our Nation’: Trump Pilloried for Demanding ‘Termination’ of the US Constitution



The White House on Saturday afternoon responded to former President Donald Trump’s demand for the “termination” of the United States Constitution over non-existent “fraud and deception” in American elections, which he continues to claim cost him the presidency in 2020 and that he is expecting Republicans to embrace in his 2024 reelection campaign.

Trump wrote on his struggling fake Twitter app Truth Social:


Trump followed up with:

So, with the revelation of MASSIVE & WIDESPREAD FRAUD & DECEPTION in working closely with Big Tech Companies, the DNC, & the Democrat Party, do you throw the Presidential Election Results of 2020 OUT and declare the RIGHTFUL WINNER, or do you have a NEW ELECTION? A Massive Fraud of this type and magnitude allows for the termination of all rules, regulations, and articles, even those found in the Constitution. Our great ‘Founders’ did not want, and would not condone, False & Fraudulent Elections!

He went on to add:


I wonder what Mitch McConnell, the RINOS, and all of the weak Republicans who couldn’t get the Presidential Election of 2020 approved and out of the way fast enough, are thinking now?

There is no evidence of widespread voter fraud in the elections of 2022, or 2020, or any other major historical contest, let alone that which was pervasive enough to affect the results. And the peaceful transfer of power from one administration to the next – which Trump has attempted to upend through his lies and ultimately by mounting an insurrection at the Capitol on January 6th, 2021 – is a key tenet that holds the American democratic experiment intact.

White House Deputy Press Secretary and Senior Communications Adviser for Strategic Response Andrew Bates touched on those points in a statement:

The American Constitution is a sacrosanct document that for over 200 years has guaranteed that freedom and the rule of law prevail in our great country. The Constitution brings the American people together – regardless of party – and elected leaders swear to uphold it. It’s the ultimate monument to all of the Americans who have given their lives to defeat self-serving despots that abused their powers and trampled on constitutional rights. Attacking the Constitution and all it stands for is anathema to the soul of our nation, and should be universally condemned. You cannot love America only when you win.

The Democratic National Committee also fired back at Trump, as reported by Politico:

Donald Trump lost by 7 million votes in 2020 and his calls to undermine our democracy cost his party key races in 2022. The continued silence by Republican leaders, including his potential primary competitors, shows a MAGA party that is beholden to Trumpism, his divisive rhetoric, and his extreme positions.

Democratic lawmakers denounced Trump as well.

Congressman Don Beyer of Virginia tweeted:

Days after Trump dined with men who praise Hitler and the Nazis, he demands the ‘termination’ of the Constitution’s electoral process so he can be illegally reinstated. Trump’s words and actions are unacceptable, they stoke hatred and political violence, and they are dangerous. Every Member of Congress swore an oath to ‘defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.’ Donald Trump has openly declared himself an enemy of the Constitution, and Republicans must repudiate him.

Hawaii Senator Brian Schatz said:

Trump just called for the suspension of the Constitution and it is the final straw for zero republicans, especially the ones who call themselves ‘constitutional conservatives.

New York Representative Richie Torres noted that “January 6 was Donald Trump’s attempt at terminating the US Constitution. He’s a repeat offender.”

California Congressman Eric Swalwell, who regularly faces death threats, stated that “every congressional reporter should demand responses from Congressional Republicans about Donald Trump’s call for the Constitution to be terminated … how many of them called themselves ‘Constitutional conservatives’ during the Obama years???”

Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar said that “Trump just called for the suspension of the Constitution to overturn the 2020 results. Georgia VOTE. You stood tall against Trump and his minions last time. A win for [incumbent Democratic Senator Raphael] Warnock is another win for democracy.”

While outrage over Trump’s “truth” was not exclusive to the left, few on the right have stepped up to rebuke Trump. One exception, however, was ex-United Nations Ambassador and National Security Adviser John Bolton, who posted that “no American conservative can agree with Donald Trump’s call to suspend the Constitution because of the results of the 2020 election. And all real conservatives must oppose his 2024 campaign for president.”


Continue Reading


‘Big Whop’: Even Right-Wing Critics Are Slamming Elon Musk’s ‘Underwhelming’ Hunter Biden Twitter Escapade



Right-wing Twitter users are weighing in to express their disapproval of the so-called bombshell “Twitter files” Elon Musk promised to deliver on Friday, December 2.

According to The Daily Beast, Musk was set to address Twitter’s decision to implement a policy that would restrict headlines and reports about Hunter Biden’s laptop from circulating on the social media platform. However, the leak ended up being a failure for many right-wing experts.

Sebastian Gorka, a right-wing radio host who previously served under the Trump administration, offered a critical response to Musk’s release after journalist Matt Taibbi shared a full Twitter thread about the findings.

READ MORE: Trump plotted to trade Mar-a-Lago files for ‘sensitive documents’ about his 2016 campaign Russia ties: report

“So far, I’m deeply underwhelmed,” Gorka said, adding, “We know the Dems in DC collude with the Dems in Palo Alto [Califonia]. Big Whop.”

He went on to reiterate his arguments when grilled by his far-right followers who were convinced that Musk’s Twitter files were some kind of “smoking gun.”

Per the news outlet: “Responding to a user claiming the Twitter company emails were ‘a clear violation of the 1st Amendment,’ the radio host fired back: ‘Err no, it’s not the DNC asking a private company to censor has nothing to do with the First Amendment.’”

Speaking to Fox News’ Tucker Carlson, New York Post columnist Miranda Devine also disapproved of the release. “I feel that Elon Musk has held back some material,” she alleged. According to The Beast, Devine also claimed: “sinister forces were perhaps controlling Musk after the Twitter chief took a meeting with Apple CEO Tim Cook earlier in the week.”

READ MORE: Marco Rubio: ‘Not a crime’ to break federal law by taking top secret national security documents from the White House

She added, “In particular, there’s a tweet in which Matt Taibbi says he hasn’t seen any evidence that law enforcement specifically warned off Twitter from our story. But that’s just not correct.”

Free Beacon reporter Joe Simonson also echoed similar sentiments on Twitter. “Twitter files [are] underwhelming so far,” Simonson tweeted. “Just revealing what we already knew: Twitter was staffed by democrats who did the bidding of Democrats.”

READ MORE: Lauren Boebert to file defamation lawsuit against PAC claiming that she was once a ‘paid escort’: report


Image by Daniel Oberhaus (2018) via Flickr and a CC license

Continue Reading


Musk’s Twitter Is ‘Welcoming With Open Arms’ a ‘Full-Fledged Nazi’ – and Recommending Users Follow Him: Reports



Elon Musk‘s Twitter on Friday allowed Andrew Anglin, the neo-Nazi behind the infamous Daily Stormer website to return to the social media platform after a nine-year ban. Several Twitter users reported the social media platform is now recommending they follow him.

“Anglin has publicly indicated that the goal of his operation and adherence to white nationalist ideology is to ‘ethnically cleanse White nations of non-Whites and establish an authoritarian government. Many people also believe that the Jews should be exterminated,'” reported Rolling Stone on Friday. “Anglin is a staunch supporter of Nazi ideology and regularly espouses Holocaust denail. In 2018, Anglin wrote that he ‘[hates] women. I think they deserve to be beaten, raped and locked in cages.'”

WUSA 9 investigative reporter Jordan Fischer tweeted a screenshot of the Twitter recommendation.

READ MORE: Anti-LGBTQ Slurs on Twitter Up Over 800% as Musk Allows Thousands of Previously Banned Users Back: Reports

As did other Twitter users.

Last month veteran journalist Nick Martin, who investigates hate and extremism, reported that “Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene shared a thread calling on Elon Musk to reinstate an array of racists, conspiracy theorists and serial harassers. The list includes fugitive neo-Nazi Andrew Anglin, white supremacist David Duke and British neo-Nazi Mark Collett.”

At the top of that list is Milo Yiannopoulos, a right wing extremist and provocateur who has advocated for older men having sex with underaged teen boys. Yiannopoulos is also Greene’s intern who was reportedly part of the Kanye WestNick Fuentes dinner with Donald Trump.

“Andrew Anglin is the founder of the neo-Nazi Daily Stormer website, which takes its name from the gutter Nazi propaganda sheet known as Der Stürmer,” the Southern Poverty Law Center has reported. “True to that vintage, Anglin is infamous for the crudity of his language and his thinking, a contrast to his sophistication as a prolific internet troll and serial harasser. Anglin’s organizing and harassment on the Daily Stormer led to lawsuits, and courts have awarded millions of dollars in damages to plaintiffs suing Anglin in recent years. But with his whereabouts unknown, Anglin has so far escaped full accountability for his actions.”

READ MORE: 15-Year Old Campaigning Door-to-Door for Raphael Warnock Shot Through Door– ‘No Indication’ Politically Motivated: Police

Indeed, just last month a federal judge issued an arrest warrant for Andrew Anglin, who is “accused of ignoring a $14 million judgment against him for orchestrating an antisemitic harassment campaign against a Montana woman’s family,” The Billings Gazette had reported.

SiriusXM host Dean Obeidallah responded to Anglin’s return to Twitter by reminding him he still owes him “$4.1 million dollars for sending your Nazis to kill me. Do you have the $?! I want to donate it groups that counter the very hate you spew!”

“Musk is helping normalize a Nazi,” he adds.

Amy Spitalnick, the executive director of Integrity First for America (IFA) called Anglin “a full-fledged Nazi who runs the Daily Stormer and, among many other things, was found liable for the Charlottesville violence in our lawsuit. A perfect example of the vile, violent extremists Musk is welcoming with open arms.”

Image: Elon Musk, photo by NASA/Aubrey Gemignani via Flickr

Continue Reading


Copyright © 2020 AlterNet Media.