“Remember, the guy who suggests getting the dynamite is usually the Fed.”
- Old hippie saying
Yesterday morning a retired military officer friend (RMOF) and I were conversing about what might happen next with the Occupy Wall Street movement. Since Michael Westen of Burn Notice or Annie Walker from Covert Affairs weren’t available, he offered some thoughts from the point of view of a non-fictional character who studies this stuff. I, as a media watcher and activist wanted to talk about how the media and power players will deal with the various actions and what we can do to predict the media’s actions so we can get ahead of news and prepare. I also have delusions of influencing the narrative, but I’m afraid that shuttle craft might have left the ship.
Here are a few of his thoughts and some of my questions, predictions and suggestions.
RMOF: I expect “trouble” soon. I don’t expect it from the protestors, but plants put in by the plutocrats or by violent individuals.
Spocko: Definitely. The media LOVE plants because they will create the kind of action that makes for good TV. What they are not good at is tracking down who has started the action and just how connected they really are to the movement. Today our new media can help. We already identified Deputy Inspector Anthony Bologna, the cop who pepper sprayed the penned in girls. I doubt the MSM have diligently tracked him down if only they had the footage. Even if they did it would be days later and they would have had to go though official channels.
Spocko ACTION Suggestion : In the following days the “folks at home” can look through the videos and photos and capture the plants, just like we found “Tony Bologna”. Then make sure the MSM knows who these people are and who they might work for.
Spocko ProTip for OWS protesters: How can people identify plants at a protest?
Check out the “boots on the ground,” literally.
[A] March organizer came by telling us there were “agitators looking to start stuff” and to not engage. “Look at their boots,” he said. “They’ll look like cop boots.” – Adrian Chen Gawker Live blog of OWS
What will be the trajectory of the escalation of violence?
RMOF: Trouble” will start with a shooting or looting. “Someone” will shoot a ‘banker’ or ‘broker,’ but sadly it will end up being some expendable minor functionary like a secretary or clerk who has no idea the guys in the $25,000.00 suits have decided to make a martyr.
Spocko: Sadly, I agree RMOF. I’m curious how this kind of stuff actually gets done.
RMOF: It isn’t hard. Find a die hard Tea Partier or die-hard left wing Anarchist for that matter. Convince them that “the Man” has to be taught a lesson. They don’t even have to shoot anyone. Just fire some shots in the air and run like hell. There would be a good chance some scared 20 year old cop would shoot someone, or (even worse for the movement), the crowd would become convinced the cops are shooting. All it takes is a brick to the head and you have “the cop killing rioters.”
Second way: Find a security company that specializes in less savory side of the business. Make sure only a few people are involved. Plant your people and go; let them encourage anger, violence, etc. as “the only way to win!”
Spocko: This is beginning to sound like conspiracy stuff, people don’t really do this in America these days, do they? (I asked, only slightly ironically and because I want to prove to people just how SOP this method is for certain groups and that SOP is used by professionals and people who play at being professionals.)
RMOF: In the US, there was the FBI/Army COINTELPRO (putting ‘spies’ in the peace movement; not surprisingly, it came to nothing). On the good side, the FBI did it in the KKK as well (and I expect, still does it in bike gangs, drug gangs, street gangs, skinheads, et al).
Recent evidence: The Denver Police inserted an undercover cop in the crowd at the 2008 Dem Convention. (I looked up the story, internal documents obtained months later proved the insertion actually happened because the undercover cop got pepper sprayed. The issue the ACLU raised, “Did the staged confrontation by police pretending to be violent inflame other protesters or officers?”)
Bottom line, it isn’t hard, and if done properly, can turn public opinion against a movement in a heartbeat. Just think of what the Black Panthers did for the Civil Rights movement—without white liberals, it all pretty much stopped.
All it takes is one stupid act of senseless violence–the adversary has no problem in using violence to protect themselves. King and Gandhi learned that. They also taught (in a very Sun Tzu way), that it is the wrong way to respond–violence with non-violence is the way to beat it.
Spocko: Surely the big money players won’t be stupid and tell plants to escalate the violence intentionally. Don’t they know that an overreaction by police will just help create sympathy for cause and the protestors?
RMOF: The bigger the movement gets, and the more it develops, the more likely the plutocrats will see it as a threat and move to destroy it. Not politically or financially, but physically.
The Tea Party was easy–just add some evangelicalism, a healthy dollup of racism, and put your people and cash in charge, and is yours (btw, right out of the playbook of the post-Reconstruction Era KKK and the demise of the Agrarian and Socialist movements). OWS, however, is filled with people with little to lose–no jobs, or they work menial labor. No homes, no mortgages, no credit cards–in other words, the rich have no leverage over them. This makes them very, very dangerous.
Spocko: So say that we don’t find out about the plutocrat plants until months later, what else can we expect following an escalation of violence?
RMOF: Open discussions on an expanded role in law enforcement by the active duty military, especially in “major disasters or events.” Keep in mind, what works for hurricane relief will also work to put down insurrection.
A wide spectrum media campaign to discredit the OWS movement. From all directions, not just Fox News–about corruption in the OWS leadership, tax evasion, jaywalking, whatever. This will come first, as it is needed to turn public opinion against OWS.
Spocko: Great points. Thanks for sharing your expertise and I now owe you a glass of Romulan ale.
Today’s Big Question: How can we have the OWS protesters’ backs?
I know a lot of people who were involved with getting communities out to the protests, they are thrilled by the support they are getting. They also are often asked what they can do to help. Besides joining a protest here is another suggestion.
Spocko ACTION suggestion:
We always talk about having people’s back. Here is a opportunity for us to “have the backs” of the OWS people.
Uncovering or fabricating dirt on people is an old tactic. It can and should be countered, by bloggers the instant they start seeing it. If you are following the MSM coverage and you see them start quoting dirt about the history of the leaders or people quoted make sure they are accurate and in context and then demand factual corrections. I’m not talking about Fox News, but TV stations and major papers. Demand they name the sources of this dirt. We know the MSM won’t talk about who is feeding them the dirt, but we need to at least remind them to provide their famous “balance” when they run a false statement about a leader or a protester they interview. (Remember the world “allegedly?” ) The corporate media will not do the work to verify the facts or context of smears, we have to do it for them.
People out here in the blogosphere need to understand that this will be the next step and it is very powerful. The discrediting of leaders is a multi-million dollar industry that works in the service of anyone who has the money and the will. The big money people will first covertly and then overtly engage in smears. We can push back, consider it your simple way to help when you are unable to protest in person. This is how you can help right from your desktop, laptop, iPad or or tablet.
Since I’m a brainstorming kind of guy, before I competed this piece I was thinking of possible headlines. I thought you might enjoy some of my rejected headlines. They are also included to make sure the SEO engines find this piece when humans don’t.
Will Violent Infiltrators Hired by Wall Street MOTUs be good for the Occupy Wall Street Movement?
Cracking Heads on Wall Street – How it will be done and how the media will cover it.
Working for the Clamp Down – Who will be starting the riots at Occupy Wall Street?
How will the Media cover any upcoming violence at OWS events?
If Wall Street doesn’t want another Kent State then why are they hiring agent provocateurs?
The Guy who Suggests Getting Dynamite is Usually the Fed. Who will escalate violence at OWS?
cross posted at Spocko’s Brain