Sunday, March 28, 2010

Hutaree Raid Militia Response Interim After Action Report: Some Preliminary Lessons Learned.

When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. -- 1 Corinthians, Chapter 13, Verse 11, King James Bible.


Previous Sipsey Street posts on this subject --


And here.

Update posts from Drudge --




And here.

Now that I've had a little sleep, let's examine what just happened and what didn't happen. The lessons are mostly good and reflect well on the expanding constitutional militia of the 21st Century.

OPFOR: Intentions of the Enemy.

There seems to me to be little doubt that Main Justice was eager to ping us back after the past week or so when a few broken windows on our part and other threats not of our making caused over a hundred congresscritters to call the FBI down on the capitol building carpet to verbally beat up the Fibbies for not doing their job and to demand that they do something about the threats they perceived to their imperial personages.

The Hutaree, who by their previous nuttery over the past two years set themselves up as low-hanging fruits -- wannabe John Browns with a persecution complex -- made a perfect target. Yet even moving on the Hutaree had many risks for the Feds. If, God forbid, shots had been exchanged, people killed, or buildings burned down a la Waco, we would be looking at a nationwide mobilization and civil war. There are analysts deep in the Hoover Building who understand that there are no more free Wacos. Yet the Feds, prodded by the Dems in Congress were willing to risk it.

They were willing to risk it -- OR THEY WANTED IT.

We'll learn more as time passes and more details emerge, but the upshot now is that they got lucky -- very lucky for them indeed, for the Hutaree have long sworn they would die rather than surrender.

Yet there were apparently no shots, no innocent deaths, and thus no retaliatory spasm of an open source insurgency using 4th generation warfare to target the war-makers and war-leaders -- and those are the stakes of the game they are clumsily playing. I doubt the Dem politicians who urged them to do SOMETHING had their own deaths in mind. Unintended consequences indeed.

OPFOR: Show of force demonstrates their inherent weakness.

I have asked for an intelligence estimate of what it took to mount this huge operation in three states against a piddling number of people. Preliminary guesses are in the many hundreds, if not low thousands, of federal, state and local cops. The raiders were backed up by armored vehicles and air cover. All to arrest 7, count 'em, 7 individuals for allegedly distributing destructive devices -- pipe bombs.

(No doubt the Feds had several confidential informants and agents provocateur in the Hutaree and allied units. Another reason to be damn careful, you militia commanders, about who you ally with. You have a duty to protect your people from stupid decisions. This begins with your choices of personnel, friends and allies.)

Now, I admit that it takes a hell of a lot more folks to arrest someone as opposed to merely killing him, but the fact of the matter is that the same risk-aversion we see in the U.S. military these days is even more true of federal law enforcement.

If what they wanted to do was overawe us with this massive show of force, the fact of the matter is that it just demonstrated how overly-concerned they are about putting their own asses on the line and taking the risk of not living until retirement.

Militia and "Patriot" Responses:

Failures --

1. Southeast Michigan Volunteer Militia.

Read this excerpt from one of the Drudge links:

Michael Lackomar, a spokesman for the Southeast Michigan Volunteer Militia, said one of his team leaders got a frantic phone call Saturday evening from members of Hutaree, a Christian militia group, who said their property in southwest Michigan was being raided by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

"They said they were under attack by the ATF and wanted a place to hide," Lackomar said. "My team leader said, 'no thanks.' "

The team leader was cooperating with the FBI on Sunday, Lackomar said. He said SMVM wasn't affiliated with Hutaree.

Now, knowing from the reports of militia folks I trust in that area something of the lack of judgment and border-line criminality of the Hutaree, I do not fault the SMVM team leader for refusing to allow his people to be drawn in. I would have the same reaction if the MS-13 types in my neighborhood were raided and in desperation asked for my help. Thanks, but no thanks.

What I do fault SMVM for, and not just this team leader, is cooperating with the FBI at all. I have had this conversation with folks in Michigan before. To my mind, the proper reaction is to call your local county sheriff or, at least here in Alabama, the state police, and report that the ATF/FBI is raiding folks and let them know you and your friends are watching. A general warning about federal misconduct, put in the form of a question to them about what do they, the peace officers of the area, intend to do to prevent Waco misadventures, would go a long way to discharging your responsibility and putting the Feds on notice to mind their manners.

The Hutaree have the right to live through the service of federal warrants without being killed. This is one reason why the constitutional militias first organized in early 90s. It is our duty to attempt to protect despicable characters even if we disagree with them. SMVM, by "cooperating" with the FBI, presumably to help them make their case against the Hutaree, has crossed this line.

2. Mark "Disinformation Specialist" Koernke

An excerpt from earlier this morning:


[04:13] I just left a shouting match about 20 minutes ago with a little over a hundred militiamen who are on the move right now. The arguement was over not if but rather where to hit them. Trying to calm them down was useless and they are not going to let this lie. They will identify the straglers or pickets first and wipe them out. By what the radiio crew said the recon teams have all of the hiddy holes

[04:14] …IDed for those they moved in and the group is infiltrating to site as we speak. I hope the locals are smart enough to step out of the way.

[04:16] this is interesting for we may have live vids from the epicanter as it developes.

[04:16] …epicenter…

This is typical of the Koernke I have known and despised for 15 years, Why anybody pays attention to this disinformation artist who does his very best to incite folks into crossing lines and committing Fort Sumters is beyond me. Given his history, he did not disappoint. The only good thing that came of this was the overwhelming number of people who ignored it and went around, over and through the disinformation to find out what actually was going on. Subsequently, he has calmed down and acts now as if he wasn't demonstrating my Michigan Grandpa's ditty making fun of folks who panic:

When in peril or in doubt,
Run in circles, scream and shout.

And in Koernke's case, flapping your arms like a chicken attempting to make airspeed velocity.

Leaders, if they ARE leaders, have a duty -- an absolute duty -- to be the calmest guy in the CP tent when everything is falling apart. 'Nuff said.

3. Myself.

I criticize myself for going public with the fact that I couldn't get in touch with my folks in Michigan and thus jumping to the conclusion that they might have been targets. I should have kept my mouth shut about that until I heard. Yes, I know, I put in caveats and didn't Koernke on you (yes, he has become a verb), but I still scared a number of folks for a short period of time who I shouldn't have. Mea culpa.


1. Local militia response.

Having received briefings from local formations in the intervening hours, it is plain that the best units in the southeast Michigan Area of Operations and contiguous areas understood what was happening almost immediately, that it was targeted at the Hutaree (who they had all been shunning for very good reasons for some time) and used their proximity to try to understand the OPFOR's movements and playbook. Some people were monitoring federal, state and local communications, others, unarmed and dressed in civvy's circulated around, testing the federal perimeters, noting force levels, agencies, armament. Testing, prodding, notetaking, learning. By doing this they learned far more about what was going on than the media knew at any given point. Some of this information I passed on to news organizations to help them ask the Feds the right questions.

2. National militia response.

Some units mobilized at the first reports, but gradually stood down as the facts became clear. Other, smarter commanders, merely did a commo check with their members, assigned themselves or their S-2s to gather info, mostly from the Internet, and awaited events.

The interesting thing to me is how Well many newbie formations reacted to this, better than I experienced with others in similar situations in the 90s. For example, Bob Wright, 1st Brigade New Mexico Militia was in the middle of training fifteen or so newbies at Camp Proctor (formerly known in the 90s vernacular as "Fort Stinking Desert") in southeast New Mexico. He received my report on his cell phone when he awoke. At reveille, he briefed trainees that a federal raid was happening in the Midwest and asked if anyone wanted to cease training and look to their homes. WITHOUT HESITATION, not one trainee evinced any interest in leaving. Bob reports they told him that they had come to get training and they wanted that most of all.

These are not childish reactions, taking counsel of fears, as we often saw in the 90s. These are the reactions of men and women who understand the situation and are willing to see it through.

3. Sipsey Street and other Internet militia boards such as AWRM.

In large measure we reported what we knew and did not Koernke on anybody. For my part, I was very early on in communication with news outlets who were covering the story. I provided them with context and information as I was able to glean it from my own sources. This synergy worked well. The questions I kept asking over and over again -- Have shots been fired? Has anyone been killed? Has any property been burned? -- these were answered to the best of the news organizations ability to cover their own local beats.

In addition, the one time a news organization spotted a Hummer filled with hard-faced, dangerous looking men dressed in camo and carrying, according to the report, "a bazooka" in the back seat, I was able to reassure them that the vehicle was filled with federal raiders. They affirmed this by calling 9-1-1.

The 2nd Amendment exists to protect the First and all the rest. Federal misconduct most often takes place in the dark. To the extent that we can support the news media and help them understand what is happening in a situation that the Feds are tight-lipped and unresponsive, this both helps them understand what we are really about and helps us shine a bright light on the cockroaches.


This could have been one hell of a lot worse than it was. Today we avoided the beginning of a civil war. I do not know how long we will be able to do that in the future, given Fed cowboy clumsiness, but the fact that we were the ones who did not take counsel of our fears -- and who "put away childish things" and did not overreact -- bodes well at least for ensuring that we don't lose the moral high ground when the Feds, finally, in frustration at our refusal to submit to their diktats, open fire on us.

After that, it will be an open source insurgency using Fourth Generation Warfare.

And we WILL win.

Not as children, but as free men and women of the armed citizenry.

Mike Vanderboegh


Brock Townsend said...

Info: A&M called a passive alert.

Anonymous said...

Great job, Mike. You rang the bell, said what you knew, said what you didn't know, and gave all of us something to think about. A raid in ANY state is of serious interest to us all. (by the way, I have family in Michigan as well-though they're not running in these circles as far as I know.) Your post also caused us to ponder; What if it's today?

What to do now?

1) Keep prepping and accelerate!

2) Call your Congresscritter and ask for them to initiate hearings into these raids. Drag it into the light and call the FBI to account for this. A coordinated, multi-state series of raids on the same day with little if any information shared about the arrests, the names, or the charges. Are they now "unpersons"? Were they really running a pipe bomb stand on the side of the road, or are they going to become the next Olofson?

Drag it into light. Call your Representative and Senator-their phone lines should be clear (sadly).


Dr. Richard said...

This was an excellent interim after action review.

Glad to see I'm not the only one who called BS on Koernke's claims today...

Justin said...

Good post.

Failure to conduct AARs is a weakness of many non military organizations.


William Flatt said...

Well said.

I spent the better part of the day putting out brush fires and assuring a couple militias out west that this was not the start of a 'general roundup' of patriots.

At the end of the day, though, I am certain this was a propaganda operation. In Pendleton, Indiana a couple weeks ago an (unrelated) group espousing a 'common law' ideology was raided by Indiana State Police for making fake license plates. Now they can make real ones under state supervision.

All of this serves as grist for the MSM propaganda machine to ostensibly scare people away from the patriot movement, or to scare patriots from the militias. Think back to the ridiculed MIAC report & its 'Ron Paul supporter = right wing militia = white supremacists = domestic terrorists' pablum. The establishment desperately wants to vindicate their smears, so they need these useful idiots that play into their hands.

I believe that time will bear this out as the MSM propaganda machine goes into overdrive.

I continue to urge real patriots to maintain their state of readiness by:
1) Staying calm
2) Remaining informed & give proper SITREPs
3) Staying out of jail
4) Using common sense,
which I trust is WELL within everyone's capacity.

I agree with the previous posters about these issues, we all should remain calmly alert and share what we know, ask questions about the things we don't.

So, thanks for the good info and best wishes to you!

^Hawk^ said...

Nice job on the Interim After Action Report Mike, I don't think anyone can fault you for having a human reaction to the possibility of friends in harms way. Your initial report and updates allowed many of us to remain calm, double check our gear, and wait for more details.

You are 100% correct though, the feds (and the country) are really lucky that we're not in the middle of another civil war right now.

Thanks again for everything you do...


III more than them said...

One other lesson to be learned from this is.....

Keep thou thine head, else thou shalt surely lose it.

Early on, unless you happen to be in the middle of bad news, keep your opinions rooted in facts. I just hear about this about an hour ago, and started reading sites, listening to scanner feeds, and digging for facts. What I found was a lot of information that had been "telephoned" and thoroughly screwed up. The truth (as we know it at this point) was there, but buried.

It takes time for the facts to become clear when we are on the outside. The danger is in reacting in anything other than a fact-digging spasm. Bad info leads to bad decisions leads to bad results.

Check your facts, boys and girls.

Sedition said...

Nice job on the intel you gave us early on Mike.
I was already filing through all the info I could find scattered across the net when the Florida A&M alert call came in.
Rounded up the gear, BOB, double checked ammo, and went right back to searching through the news.
It was good to see that everyone was alerted on the situation, but no one screwed the pooch by pulling the trigger too early. Nice to see that the cool heads won out.

Anonymous said...

Obama was not out of town as a coincidence to this raid -- everybody knew the media would be covering his trip to Astan vs. a local "militia" roundup.

Interesting the numbers involved -- with armor and air support. They obviously were itching for a fight. When we go to pick up a nutcase here (I am a local reserve deputy) we keep it as low key as possible because you don't want to provoke a response.

Its also probably a. in reaction to the bricks being tossed and the congress calling for them to do "something" about it and b. the first in a series of this sort of raid for either propaganda reasons by the populist POS that are in power in DC and/or seeking to provoke a response.

Cybrludite said...

I'm assuming that the Hutaree have more than seven members. What happens if one of those who haven't been arrested goes and does something rash? As you mentioned, they want what we're trying to prevent to come to pass...

Bert N. Ernie said...

Outstanding job, brother. A better AAR than most military types would provide these days. Never DID see on about Major Hassan.

BTW - when Obongo went to 'Stan ( puke) I wonder if he followed Hilary's example and ran across the tarmac dodging sniper fire ;o)
I can put forth a bet that he was not received in the manner that President Bush was each time that he disembarked in a combat theater.


Anonymous said...

You guys are a bunch of paranoid fools. Be Careful that you yourselves are not also low hanging fruit.

I was a part of the anti-income tax movement in the middle seventies. Your kinds' sense of civic responsibility disillusioned me because it turned out you guys did not believe in paying any taxes at all.

If you wish to play soldier, this is not the middle 1990's, but 2010.

Opps, I forgot to mention that the movement was filled with a pack of racists at that time and I assume that has not changed.

I have quit a few stories I can share.

Patriotism, Religion, Paranoia, and bullshit, a really great combination.


Happy D said...

More windows anyone?

Kyle said...

Cybrludite, I'd say the prior posts regarding cooler heads and accurate SITREP's would apply if someone goes off half-cocked. None of us "want" to go to battle; the very thing we are trying to avoid. However, being ready, prepared, and informed are priority and beyond that, remain calm and vigilant...
Mike, I cannot fault you for your response. We are all human and thus, subject to emotions. You didn't call for retaliation or armed response, so your better judgment prevailed.

Eric said...

This made me realize how seriously un prepared I am for this situation.

I just thought about this. Why doesn't the FBI and DHS raid where the real threats are.... D.C.?

Anonymous said...

You have to wonder if this "crisis" might have been started by a plant inside their organization. It would be interesting to see if there is any perimeter intel on the deployment of fed forces. How much was tasked with interdiction of "help", etc. Most definitely a false flag type provocation using some of the usual "players"

d3vnull said...

Good report - exactly what I've been looking for. Any more information regarding vehicles used, disposition of enemy forces, perhaps a post-op briefing showing where perimeter points were set up?

MamaLiberty said...

I think I have a few more gray hairs this morning... but I'm very, very proud of all those who stood their ground and responded so rationally. Good job, Mike and all.

God bless you, every one.

atexan said...

Great job Mike, as always! Thanks for what you do.

sonofliberty said...

well as to be expected, they are ramping this up in the MSM coverage. curiously though, right now only fox online has it on the front page.

from msnbc:( )

NBC, and news services
updated 2 minutes ago

ADRIAN, Mich. - Nine suspects tied to a Christian militia in the Midwest were charged Monday with conspiring to kill police officers, then attack a funeral in the hopes of killing more law enforcement people, federal prosecutors said.

Members of the group called Hutaree are charged in the case, including its leader, David Brian Stone. The suspects included six people from Michigan, two from Ohio and one from Indiana, officials said.

Once other officers gathered for the slain officer's funeral, the group planned to detonate homemade bombs with projectiles, killing more, the newly unsealed court papers revealed.

so these are the alleged charges. personally im still waiting to see how this all pans out.

now what really has to make you wonder, however, is how and why the feds can jump on a little group of overzealous rednecks with an incredible show of force, yet allow all the raghead training camps go completely unmolested, despite the same activities going on in them?

must be muslim pride in potus, and maybe his AG is a closet muslim as well.

/cynicism off

Paul X said...

Mike, I thought your comments about the massive overreaction of federal forces were interesting. They bring to mind this little gem from the Sandinista Revolution in Nicaragua against the dictator Somoza:

"Nevertheless, the movement did not die. In 1969, a small group of battlers hidden in a house in Managua was discovered by the National Guard, and a battle took place almost as if it was a movie scene. Three hundred soldiers, tanks and planes were sent to destroy the hidden guerrillas. The battle lasted several hours until there was no more answer to the attack. When soldiers entered the house seeking for bodies they realized that the entire combat was fought by a single young man, Julio Buitrago, who stayed inside the house so that his partners could escape.

Somoza showed the battle on TV to demonstrate the FSLN’s destruction, but the heroic action of a single man turned the entire situation around and the population was moved by the event and identified themselves even more with the revolutionary movement. Other unequal battles took place in several cities."

Anonymous said...

False Flag op? The raid was over the weekend. there are grand jury indictments on Monday.


Did they convene the grand jury before the raid?

What did they know and when did they know it?

Sure am glad the gummint is portecting us from an outbreak of 17 christians...

J. Croft said...

Our best bet is to generate as much NONVIOLENT NONCOMPLIANCE as possible. This isn't merely exercising the 2nd without infringement, it runs the gamut of opting out or ignoring the social, economic and legal controls we LET the enemy put on us.

Almost nobody is going to join a militia and these raids are designed to scare people off. It's a show of force.

What people would be wiling to do are personal acts such as debt repudiation, learning self-sufficiency, acts of protest, shunning government 'gods' at work and socially. Eventually greater acts of resistance such as entering the underground economy and begin political retaking of rural communities to use as examples to generate more political and economic resistance will tear apart the enemy's support... us.

We won't have the time to accomplish this in a peacetime setting so we do what we can now. The enemy will continue to provocateur us and their strategy will probably work. We are on borrowed time and the loudmouths of Hutaree did us a huge favor by falling back on their nature-and lack of raid preparation-by giving up without a fight.

Let us use that time without infighting or waste.

d3vnull said...

I think these guys were "fringe" militia groups in that they may have had mostly openly-racist members (most militias are, of course, regular folks organizing for common defense against a literally aggressive gov'mt).
I hear they actually requested re-enforcements from other area militias who turned them down. This tells me that they were likely outcasts of the (can't believe I'm saying this after all these years) mainstream militia movement.
So the lesson here is: be decent, act decent, and do good in your community so your neighbors respect you and what you have to say as a reasonable person, in that you neighbors know you'd protect them from a despot, so that they might do the same for you.

BTW $10 dollars says an FBI agent pushed them to do whatever it is they're accused of doing, a la Randy Weaver where an agent nagged him for 3 years until he made the guy a sawed-off shotgun, just to bust the guy making a sawed-off shotgun!

Anonymous said...

It seems to be a case of the government framing somewhat foolish people, not good. There is no claim in the indictment of any planning of a specific act of violence. They are being charged with sedition, which more or less means the government does not have any good evidence against them. It seems likely they had no explosive or machine guns or they would have been charged with such. Notice they claim they planned to kill policemen but are not charging them with such.

Anonymous said...

You what is really sad is that so-called fellow militias are already judging these people as if they were guilty as charged, your leaning in favor of the feds who consistently have set people up in the past, bordering on entrapment.

You say the Hutaree were " nuts "? I would disagree with you about that, they are entitled to their beliefs just as any other religious group is, regardless if they are alittle off center to the left or right, they still have their right to believe as they choose.

It is the feds who cant keep their story straight, first threatening muslims, then politicians, then police, then having pipe bombs, then just having materials to make them then disseminating information on how to make bombs......
The we find out there was an informant, this guy probably prodded them along and goaded them into doing something stupid or he may have set them up.
No one will know until their court date and then even only if all evidence is allowed to be shown.
Everyone is so quick to throw these guys under the bus, what are you going to do when something happens and they come knocking on your door to take you away......
Or your neighbor....
Are you going to stand there pointing fingers saying " we arent like those people, they're religious extremists!"

There some on some forums who said these Hutaree were not real Militia because they would not have surrendered, that was easy for a keyboard commando to say, these people ran from their homes to draw the feds away from their children, thats why they didnt fire back.
Anyway, these people deserve a fair trial, not to be ridiculed by those claiming to represent the Militia Movement.

d3vnull said...

Anonymous, I have to agree with you - most definitely. I smell a provocateur in the midst of this case!

Anonymous said...

In my opinion there is no doubt the Hutaree were infiltrated and the MI militia was conspiring with the feds on this. They stated they were cooperating with the fed. However I think that if (IF) the Hutaree were planning to kill a Police officer to start the war then they needed to be taken out. But who knows, when you start arresting people on their thoughts or words then you can’t trust the outcome. If there is physical evidence or planning documents that would be a different story. I guess time will tell, when they go to trial it should come out.
This should be a lesson for anyone who has any type of group, to spend a lot more time on OPSEC and to know who their friends are and not trust anyone they have not known for a long time. The indictment did not give any information on how evidence was obtained or who may have provided such information, but it did lead you to beleave that they had inside information.