News of the recent events in Oregon deeply saddened me. According to Victoria Sharp (who was in the car that was ambushed) Lavoy Finicum was shot when he had his hands in the air. We really won’t know who to believe until video of the event is released. (There were 30+ vehicles there, so the chances are very good that a dashcam recorded what happened.) The Federal agents have apparently now upped the ante, turning what had been a peaceful dialogue into a shooting affray. It saddens me to hear that there was loss of life in the ambush-arrest of several of the Malheur protestors. I must ask: Why did the FBI roadblock them out in the middle of nowhere, where there would be no independent witnesses? (Why not just arrest them in the parking lot, just before the well-publicized public meeting?) Since when is an arrest warrant served at 3,025 feet per second?
The highway ambush was reminiscent of the ambush of tax protestor Gordon Kahl. There, Kahl and his son were ambushed by U.S. Marshals in a roadblock set up on a lonely stretch of road, as they traveled home from a public meeting. (Kahl’s story is told in the documentary film Death & Taxes.) The difference there was that Karl, a WWII veteran, shot back with a rifle and escaped. His son, Yorie Kahl, is still serving a life sentence in a Federal supermax prison, even though he never fired a shot during the ambush or in the subsequent “shoot in” that took his father’s life.)
The January 26th Highway 395 ambush leaves the remaining protestors at the Harney County Resource Center in a predicament. They probably now expect to be shot on sight. Will they hunker down, attempt to exfiltrate, or parlay for surrender? Since the FBI drew first blood, some of the protestors might now feel justified in engaging in combat. The situation could get very ugly, with more loss of life.
The new FBI “checkpoints” (read: siege/blockade) on all of the roads leading into the Harney County Resource Center are a clear attempt to isolate and possibly starve out the remaining protestors.
As I have written before, I think that the tactics chosen by Ammon Bundy and his group were unwise. However, they did have good reason to seek a redress of grievances, but it was foolish to occupy Federal property. (They should have studied the history of the Native American takeover of Alcatraz Island in 1969/1970. There, the Native Americans could at least claim that Alcatraz was “abandoned” Federal property.) Something tells me that Ammon Bundy will not be given nationwide television coverage of his trial. If he is afforded even a few minutes to make a truncated John Galt speech, few people outside of the courtroom will ever hear it.
Again, I recommend that the citizenry take up the pen, not the sword, in response to the protest at the Harney County Resource Center (aka Malheur Wildlife Refuge). The Federal government must be held accountable for their unconstitutional land grab in the western states. It is time for a redress of grievances.
All that I can safely predict is that this will probably not end well.
But please pray for a peaceful ending, that justice is served, and that our Constitutional rights are restored. – JWR