Disproving The Nonsense About The FBI & Jan. 6th Would Be Easier If The FBI Didn't Have A History Of Entrapping People In Made Up Plots

from the you-guys-made-this-worse dept

There's a very, very dumb conspiracy theory making the rounds -- and I want to be very clear on this -- that has zero evidence to support it, that the FBI was actually behind the January 6th invasion of the Capitol. It was originally reported by a wacky extremist news organization that I won't even bother naming here, and then got a lot more attention when Fox News made it a story via Tucker Carlson's show. The underlying confusion is that a (former Trump admin official who was let go after attending a conference with white nationalists but then later appointed to a new job within the Trump White House) reporter completely misunderstood what "unindicted co-conspirator" means in various charging documents.

What it generally means are people the government has not yet charged, and who they don't want to name so they don't tip them off (or where they don't yet know who they are, or don't have enough evidence to charge, or for a variety of other reasons). What it absolutely never means, is an undercover FBI agent or informant. Those people are not ever described as unindicted co-conspirator. But the reporter somehow got it into his head that this meant they were FBI agents, and then went to town with a conspiracy theory blaming the FBI for the insurrection, claiming that it was designed to "frame the entire MAGA movement."

As noted, this is false, and there is no evidence to support this. At all. It's a fiction of imagination from someone who has no idea what he's talking about, and of course Tucker Carlson ran with it, because that's what Tucker Carlson does.

But... here's the thing: it would be a hell of a lot easier to debunk this nonsense if the FBI (especially since 9/11) didn't have a depressingly long history of... setting up fake terrorist plots in order to entrap people to get big headlines around an arrest of someone who never had any means to actually carry out the attack. We've covered examples of these kinds of FBI activities for years. We've written about examples of this over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over again.

No doubt, what the FBI does in those cases is disgusting and highly questionable. It often involves them searching out people who are either mentally troubled or really desperate, and then proposing they get involved in a completely fictional terrorist plot -- a plot that the individuals would have no possible chance of actually carrying out on their own. The undercover FBI agents (or the confidential informant working for the FBI) then proceed to do all the actual "planning" including buying any of the necessary materials and getting all the details in order. Then, after the planning has reached a certain point and the sucker is bought in on the plan, they're arrested, and the FBI claims it "stopped" a terrorist attack -- which usually gives the FBI lots of glowing press attention.

Of course, the reality is that there was no threat. There was no actual plot. There is never any ability to actually carry anything out. The weapons or bombs or whatever are all faked or never actually in existence. It's all a shadow play so the FBI can try to get some headlines and pretend they're doing something.

But that's clearly not what happened with January 6th. For one thing, the events of January 6th actually happened. The Capitol was actually invaded. Damage was actually done. If the FBI was planning it as per their usual homegrown plots, no actual attack would have happened. Also, if you look at the pattern of who the FBI has gone after with these plots... it's not really been the Trump supporting MAGA militia type.

Either way, though, people wouldn't have to be doing this big silly debunking of this kind of nonsense conspiracy theory if the FBI didn't actually have a track record of doing this kind of thing over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over again.

So, you know, perhaps they should stop doing that.

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Filed Under: conspiracy theory, doj, entrapment, fbi, january 6th, own plot, tucker carlson, undercover


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  • identicon
    kallethen, 22 Jun 2021 @ 9:26am

    It's like the Boy Who Cried Wolf. The boy (FBI) cried wolf (faked plots) so much that when a real wolf actually shows up (insurrection at the Capitol), people assume it's fake.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 22 Jun 2021 @ 9:40am

      'It's BLM! ANTIFA! The FBI! ANYONE BUT US!'

      Eh, they may be trying to pin the blame on the FBI now but that's likely less due to the FBI's history of finding dupes to arrest(odds are most of the people pushing this argument aren't even aware of that history or would actively support it) so much as just a continuation of the same thing that's been going on since the insurrection, where Trump cultists are desperate to find something, anything to blame other than their own and their Dear Leader for the assault on the capitol and failed insurrection.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 2:14pm

        Re: 'It's BLM! ANTIFA! The FBI! ANYONE BUT US!'

        Or themselves. The personal responsibility gang (old versions or new) never, ever account for themselves. It's always someone else's personal responsibility which is lacking and needs to be invoked.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 23 Jun 2021 @ 3:20am

      Re:

      The real takeaway here should be how badly this reflects on the US federal law enforcement. In any other western nation, if you were to say the words "Well, we know our police has been lying their asses off in order to frame people and build mountains out of molehills so we can't really trust them in a genuine criminal investigation" you'd assume that nation to be a rogue state or banana republic.

      Only In America. A term which used to connotate upwards mobility, freedom, massive building projects and money spent on putting people on celestial bodies. Today it mainly means "Only G20 this badly off in regards to <important topic>."

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 22 Jun 2021 @ 9:33am

    Even if they were right they'd still be wrong

    Thing is while the FBI has a history of finding gullible(or mentally incapable) dupes to trick into 'terrorist attack's so they can swoop in for the arrest that still involves tricking the mark into attempting to do something illegal, so even taking the argument at face value you'd still have a lot of Trump cultists engaging in illegal actions at the behest of the FBI who... all went out for coffee when they were supposed to be making the arrests and only noticed well after the fact?

    If the FBI did orchestrate the whole thing they apparently had no difficulty tricking a bunch of 'law and order' Trump cultists to assault the capitol, which isn't exactly making said cultists look better or any less responsible for their actions, leaving this conspiracy theory a failure even if it was right.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 10:07am

    Don't be so ambiguous, Mike. How do you really feel about this?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 10:09am

    "[The FBI's] track record of doing this kind of thing over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over again."

    So, you're saying it might be true?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 11:37am

    I recommend Glenn Greenwald's column about this on substack for a more nuanced take.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Mike Masnick (profile), 22 Jun 2021 @ 7:17pm

      Re:

      If by "nuanced" you mean "completely wacky and unsupported by reality" then sure. Sorry, but Glenn has become the least trustworthy narrator these days. His post on this is off the rails nonsense.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 11:47am

    it's not really been the Trump supporting MAGA militia type.

    Mike this isn't actually helping your argument of the FBI not being involved in the events of Jan 6th. I mean, if I recall correctly, there's a trend of the FBI implicating the mentally in-firmed.

    (I admit I may have a tiny biased against people of certain 'political' persuasions... but I am not doing any content moderation, so it should all be good.)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    blah, 22 Jun 2021 @ 1:13pm

    Slight correction: change "and then got a lot more attention when Fox News made it a story via Tucker Carlson's show." to "and then got a lot more attention when another wacky extremist news organization, Fox News, made it a story via Tucker Carlson's show."

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 2:43pm

    Mike, apart from participating in the plot, which is probably nonsense à la Carlson, you do not spend much attention about the possibility that the fbi knew and did nothing (like it happened on 9/11, and in other occasions) either deliberately or by mistake. Given that the organizations behind the 6 jan were deemed high threats, and one of their leaders, which was (conveniently?) arrested the day before was a known fbi informant, the probability of the fbi knowing in advance is pretty high because if their usual pattern of infiltrating and/or having informants (which in the case is a documented fact). Which does not prove that the fbi organized or participated into anything of course - but still raises plenty of questions about their role.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 22 Jun 2021 @ 3:43pm

      Re:

      I mean sure they might have had an idea that something was likely to happen even if they didn't know what, that's not impossible, but unless some credible evidence comes out that they did and yet chose not to do anything there doesn't seem to be much to gain by speculating or treating the idea as credible.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 11:53pm

        Re: Re:

        Arresting the proud boys leader Enrique tarrio, which worked as an fbi informant in the past, right the day before does not look like a coincidence.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 11:59pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          "The FBI previously said Tarrio’s earlier arrest was an effort to preempt the events of January 6." This is from Reuters, here https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-proudboys-leader-idUSKBN29W1PE

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            That One Guy (profile), 23 Jun 2021 @ 1:47am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Okay that was a funny read, everyone but him in court is gushing about how helpful he's been for law enforcement and he's desperately trying to deny it, likely knowing how well the label of 'government/police informant' would go over with the people he hangs out with...

            Humor aside the line you mentioned is a little vague and I could see it being read as 'they suspected that something might go down(not a hard thing to predict honestly) but didn't have any idea what specifically that was, so they tried to get a known firebrand out of the city', which would be entirely sensible on their part and not necessarily anything more sinister.

            To be fair with what they've done in the past I wouldn't put it past them to look the other way if they thought it would be worth it, but barring some heftier evidence that that's what they did I keep coming back to the explanation I noted above as the most likely, that they suspected that something was likely to happen but didn't have enough information to act in a meaningful manner.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 23 Jun 2021 @ 3:25am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              "Okay that was a funny read, everyone but him in court is gushing about how helpful he's been for law enforcement and he's desperately trying to deny it..."

              That was hysterical, yes. Prosecutors, federal agents, the whole apparatus of law enforcement all there singing his praises about how important and invaluable his help had been and he's there mumbling that he can't remember any of it.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), 22 Jun 2021 @ 5:33pm

    That's so cute... how after all of this time you think that those who watch Faux News regularly could ever be convinced what they were told wasn't the super duper secret absolute truth only the heir to a frozen food fortune could tell them about.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 8:02pm

    SO you really want this LIE accepted like "Russia collusion"

    Yeah, you just can't have your dis-info exposed AND believed. Tough on you, Maz.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 8:15pm

      Re: SO you really want this LIE accepted like "Russia collu

      There's video that they refuse to release.

      There's "John Sullivan" who was leading and urging destruction, a known provocateur, and the "Viking guy", clearly NOT a Trump type.

      You'll soon have to ignore this like the "Russia collusion" you touted for 6 months, which was more than fully investigated and ZERO was found for Trump, meanwhile FBI went to FISA court and LIED.

      You just SO MUCH want to have the "insurrection" fable that you literally state above that you don't even care what the facts are -- by denying that there's evidence, which is simply FALSE.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Toom1275 (profile), 22 Jun 2021 @ 10:16pm

      Re: SO you really want this LIE accepted like "Russia collusion"

      [Projects facts not in evidence]

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 8:14pm

    "that has zero evidence to support it"

    ... Now I'm being blocked again!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 8:15pm

      Re: "that has zero evidence to support it"

      AND I'm IN again! This is kind of random.

      Here's the LIE -- the mighty "spam filter" somehow catches the above text? BALONEY!


      Comment Held for Moderation...

      Thanks for your comment.
      It will be reviewed by our staff before it is posted.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 8:23pm

    It's just coincidence that my sessions STOP working, right?

    NO, it's admin action out of sight by cheaty Techdirt.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 8:27pm

    in-Knocking again

    Knock, knock! -- Who's there? -- YOU KNOW WHO, THAT'S WHY I'M BLOCKED!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 8:29pm

    One-liners keep working IF remove cookies in between.

    See if this goes in...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 8:29pm

      Re: One-liners keep working IF remove cookies in between.

      And now I'm back! With Greenwald to support me against Maz!

      The New Domestic War on Terror Has Already Begun
      -- Even Without the New Laws Biden Wants

      https://greenwald.substack.com/p/the-new-domestic-war-on-terror-has

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 8:29pm

      Re: One-liners keep working IF remove cookies in between.

      Just as was true of the first War on Terror, any attempt to place the actual lingering threat in context (by rejecting the claim that the danger is so grave that it requires vast new powers), or to suggest it is being manipulatively exaggerated (by calling it The Insurrection), or to document actual lies being told in service of the prevailing narrative (such as the ongoing lie that a pro-Trump crowd murdered Officer Brian Sicknick) provokes furious accusations that one must be sympathetic to if not supportive of the January 6 rioters and any groups associated with them. Attempts to suggest that those charged in connection with the January 6 riot are being excessively prosecuted and punished provoke even greater rage - despite the fact that not a single one of them has been charged with treason, sedition, insurrection or domestic terrorism, and despite the fact that concerns about overzelaous prosecutors and the carceral state are supposed to be staples of liberals politics (though ones which, like anti-police sentiment and opposition to killing unarmed protesters, instantly disappear when convenient, such as when it comes time to exploit Officer Sicknick or cheer the fatal point-blank shooting of the unarmed Ashli Babbitt).

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 8:51pm

    Trying again with innoc leader...

    because TD now seems totally locked down!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 8:51pm

      Re: Trying again with innoc leader...

      That worked, eventually.

      And where's your late piece? Geigner got COVID?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 8:52pm

        Re: Re: Trying again with innoc leader...

        AH. There he is! -- May be slightly lower the mighty "spam filter" when a new piece is out?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2021 @ 10:38pm

          Re: Re: Re: Trying again with the definition of insanity

          You’re still the only person I’ve ever seen lose a fight to a spam filter.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            PaulT (profile), 23 Jun 2021 @ 1:45am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Trying again with the definition of insanity

            It's not the fact that he keeps losing, so much as it is the fact that his only response to being caught in the filter is to send more spam. The constant battle against his own actions is fascinating to watch, from a car crash point of view.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 23 Jun 2021 @ 6:57am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Trying again with the definition of insanity

              "The constant battle against his own actions is fascinating to watch, from a car crash point of view."

              Nothing so fast. At least a car crash only means one person did something dumb one time. This...is more like watching someone so obsessed with "getting" someone else they're punching themselves in the crotch repeatedly because they've heard the other party is squeamish...

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 23 Jun 2021 @ 5:40pm

          Re: Re: Re: Trying again with innoc leader...

          It's not a coincidence. You're just an asshole.

          You write like an asshole.
          You complain like an asshole.
          You don't like the site, and yet here you are. Again. Like an asshole.
          And considering that you're getting pissed off at a spam filter is just about the biggest asshole thing I can think of.

          Ever not been invited to a party and wondered why?

          It's you.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 23 Jun 2021 @ 3:50am

    There's a very, very dumb conspiracy theory making the rounds --
    and I want to be very clear on this -- that has zero evidence to support it

    Yeah, but since you got the dumbest voters ever, it quite possibly gonna gain some traction:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zv8ZPFOxJEc

    Magnetic vaccines, yeah right.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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