ADMIN NOTE: The Holiday Season is upon us. Being the week of a holiday, this report is shorter than usual. Both Strategic Intelligence and Low Intensity Conflict will be published the week of Christmas (25-29 December), although both reports will be a Year in Review, identifying the trends of 2017 and looking forward to 2018. After the new year, Strategic Intelligence will be published regularly on Thursdays, and Low Intensity Conflict on Fridays. Thank you for the support, and we hope that you have a wonderful rest of the year with us.
Priority Intelligence Requirements
- PIR1: What indicators describe the Alt-Left movement’s strength, capabilities, sentiment, and capabilities?
- PIR2: What indicators describe the Alt-Right movement’s strength, capabilities, sentiment, and capabilities?
- PIR3: What are the new indicators of future politically-related violence?
- PIR4: What is the current threat index score for the Alt-Left movement?
- Alt-Left Roll-Up
PIR1: What indicators describe the Alt-Left movement’s strength, capabilities, sentiment, initiatives, and infighting?
CPUSA publishes overview of a new strategy for 2018 (Initiatives)
Communist Party USA (CPUSA) is nearing 100 years as a political party in the United States, and they’re focused on making 2019 their biggest and most impactful year yet. As such, they’ve laid out some guidelines and strategies for 2018 to accomplish that goal. Our Executive Summary contains five points. (1) This strategy draws connections between the Russian communist revolution 100 years ago and the modern communist revolution, as if it say ‘Now it’s our time for revolution.’ (2) The document repeatedly boasts about the party’s growing numbers, how many major cities in which they have members, and how successful the movement has been so far. (Analyst Comment: CPUSA produces propaganda made especially for college students and younger people who are impressionable.) (3) Despite all the successes, CPUSA claims they are still struggling, and need more involvement and donations in order to help the movement grow. (4) CPUSA says the organization knew Trump was a danger and that people would protest his actions, but they could not have imagined how evil Trump would turn out to be. They describe Trump’s “crisis-a-day governing style”, and then describe how strong the opposition and resistance against his administration has been. (5) CPUSA describes its recruitment plans and their target audiences. The target audience includes young people, especially students and Millennials. By their own admission, CPUSA “is a party that is going to be built largely among Millennials. Let’s face it: that’s where the greatest opportunity lies. We have to step up our work with the young generation. This is a special question that requires special measures. At our last convention, we made some decisions in an attempt to reorganize our work with a focus on students.” (You can read the full report and source information here.)
Trouble #8: Hack the System (Initiatives)
Anarchist media group sub.Media released episode eight of its Trouble series on Monday. Entitled “Hack the System” the 30-minute video features interview clips with hackers and hacktivists, who provide an overview of what’s possible, along with some security tips. The video covers a brief history of hacking, highlighting several prominent hacks and how government is able to hack citizens and violate the Bill of Rights. The general message of the video is to encourage hacks against government and capitalist targets. [source: https://itsgoingdown.org/trouble-8-hack-system/]
(Analyst Comment: sub.Media’s Trouble series has been very well produced, and their videos are engaging. As we’ve covered in previous reports on Trouble, these mini-documentaries are intended to be viewed as a group, and supporters of sub.Media can receive additional resources, training materials, and discussion questions for viewing parties.)
RAM NYC raising funds for autonomous relief in Puerto Rico (Initiatives)
The New York City chapter of the Revolutionary Abolitionist Movement (RAM) is raising funds for building autonomous relief networks in Puerto Rico, following the devastating hurricane in September. [source: https://twitter.com/RevAbolitionNYC/status/935917462968786945 and https://www.facebook.com/events/149834442411489]
(Analyst Comment: Autonomous relief networks consist of anarchist volunteers working on service projects and providing humanitarian aid, especially in areas where government is unable. As covered in previous editions of this report, this enables RAM and other groups to build rapport with the community and gain local support for anarchist collectives.)
Redneck Revolt boasts 13 chapters and 34 branches
Redneck Revolt (RR), an anti-racist and largely anti-capitalist group which acts as a quasi-militia, is made up of specifically rural and working-class Americans, as opposed to some of the latte-drinking Antifascist chapters that exist in large cities. There’s also another distinct difference — Redneck Revolt chapters are pro-gun and have appeared at rallies open carrying long guns and pistols. Said one RR activist: “Current threats are deadly serious. Our defense strategies should be too. The left has a very long history of being non-aggressive and there’s been a hesitation to use firearms (or other shows of force). The overall reaction by alt-right organizations has been one of shock — when they see a bunch of folks in red bandannas, armed. They’ve been more hesitant to do the proactive things they would have done.” In January of this year, RR claimed to have 34 branches in 13 chapters across the United States.
(Analyst Comment: We’ve not dug into RR as much as other groups, however, right now we do believe that RR continues to organize, recruit, and train, both armed and unarmed. We’ll work on identifying each chapter (state/regional) and branch (local). This update will be published in this report and appear on the Conflict Tracker at: https://forwardobserver.com/watchfloor/conflict-tracker/)
Austin, Pittsburgh Red Guards meets with French Antifa members (Initiatives)
According to a post on their blog, the Austin Red Guards, a revolutionary communist vanguard group, met with a Revolutionary Antifascist Front of Provence (FRAP), an antifascist group out of France. That meeting included Three River Reds, the Red Guard chapter out of Pittsburgh, PA. The post mainly speaks about solidarity with other chapters. According to a Twitter post, the three groups met and exchanged lessons, and presumably tactics, to use during future events. [Source: https://redguardsaustin.wordpress.com/2017/11/21/statement-of-solidarity-with-front-revolutionnaire-antifasciste-de-provence-revolutionary-antifascist-front-of-provence-f-r-a-p/]
Olympia, WA activists continue efforts to block rail transportation (Initiatives)
In Olympia, WA, police raided another railway blockade intended by activists to prevent shipments of fracking materials to North Dakota. “Starting at five this morning, the Olympia commune that has been blockading the railroad tracks leading into the port for the past twelve days was raided by a large police force comprised of officers from multiple agencies, many of which drove unmarked cars.” [Source: https://itsgoingdown.org/olympia-commune-raided-police/]
For a complete roll-up of daily activity, see the following reports:
29 NOV (Texas, New York, DC)
30 NOV (Texas, Michigan, Washington State, DC)
01 DEC (Oregon, Virginia, California, Texas, and Patriot Front)
PIR2: What indicators describe the Alt-Right movement’s strength, capabilities, sentiment, initiatives, and infighting?
Michigan in talks with Spencer for campus speech (Initiatives)
Earlier this year, Richard Spencer and the National Policy Institute (NPI) threatened to sue the University of Michigan after the school at first rejected Spencer’s request to speak on campus. The University caved in to the lawsuit threat and is now in talks with Spencer to plan his event. To protest the event, Michigan students organized a walk-out to bring attention to the speech. On Monday, Facebook removed the event page for their planned protest because it did not meet Facebook’s “community standards”. [source: https://itsgoingdown.org/facebook-shuts-event-page-student-walk-richard-spencer-week-action-begins/]
Patriot Front releases propaganda video (Initiatives)
The fascist activist group Patriot Front published a well-edited video featuring postering campaigns, news coverage, and a fight club, from among their activities from the past year. [Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31afY8154YE]
PIR3: What are the new indicators of future politically-related violence?
16 December – San Francisco, CA – “March Against Sanctuary Cities” event ‘re-branded’ to “Justice for Kate Steinle”
TBA – Richard Spencer speech at the University of Cincinnati
TBA – Richard Spencer speech at the University of Michigan
TBA – Lawsuits still pending to allow Richard Spencer to speak at Penn State, Ohio State, and Michigan State.
PIR4: What is the current threat index score for the Alt-Left movement?
Indicators of Revolutionary Activity
Strong Indications: 7
Weak Indications: 5
No/Negligible Indications: 8
We remain at 12/20 total indicators, and there’s been no change in the last week.