A group called Americans for Limited Government filed a FOIA request to get the sources that the Department of Homeland Security used in the "rightwing extremist" report that came out earlier this year. The government has responded with a list that includes some questionable to very questionable internet sources rather than, for instance, actual FBI investigations and the like.
"Our worst fears about what went into this memo have been confirmed. The government department that was supposed to be tasked with identifying domestic terrorist threats is apparently using news stories, kooky websites, and conjecture instead of actual hard intelligence reporting and analysis... This is a disgrace, and calls into question what it is that the so-called 'Extremism and Radicalizaton Branch of the Homeland Environment Threat Analysis Division’ actually does."
You can download a copy of the PDF with the sources from the first link. Unfortunately the links in the PDF are only in picture form so it's a bit unwieldy, but in addition to what appear to be news reports, there are more questionable sources:
* Several links to the Anti Defamation League. See the link for more on them.
* Several pages at a "kooky" site I've never heard of before, including this page: whatdoesitmean.com/index1132.htm According to Quantcast (FWIW), that site gets just slightly more visitors per month than this site.
* The New York Times article "On Concerns Over Gun Control, Gun Sales Are Up" (link). A quick glance didn't raise any red flags, but the NYT isn't exactly known to be sympathetic to rightwing gun owners.
* "White extremists lash out over election of nation's first black president" (link). I suspect that a close reading of that article would reveal several "problems".
Wed, 08/12/2009 - 05:01 · Importance: 7