After an explosion of racially charged violence and anger culminated in a bloody weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia, talk-radio star Rush Limbaugh wants to know: Exactly who is behind this hateful madness?
As WND reported, a rally by neo-Nazis, Klan members and other white supremacists turned deadly when a man rammed his car into a group of counter-protesters Saturday, killing one woman and injuring at least 19 more at Emancipation Park. The mix of political extremists included radicals aligned with Antifa, a black-clad, helmet-wearing group of self-described anarchists and revolutionary communists known for violence and threats. The crowd gathered in response to a city plan to remove a statue of Robert E. Lee as part of a nationwide push to tear down Confederate symbols.
New York Times reporter Sheryl Gay Stolberg said she observed "club-wielding 'antifa' beating white nationalists being led out of the park" in Charlottesville.
People in the crowds threw water bottles filled with cement and urine. Others sprayed pepper spray and threw smoke bombs. Rioters began clubbing one another.
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President Trump unequivocally and repeatedly condemned the "violence, bigotry and hatred" and called for national unity. But it still wasn't enough for the mainstream media and leftist detractors.
Despite the mishmash of extremist groups on the scene, the left and mainstream media demanded that Trump condemn the hateful actions specifically of the white supremacists and neo-Nazis. (On Monday, President Trump specifically condemned white supremacists.) But nary a peep was said of Antifa's role in the violence.
Rush: 'Both of these groups are extreme leftists'
There's a reason for that one-sided demand, explained talk-radio superstar Rush Limbaugh on his Monday program.
Limbaugh said leftists demanded Trump specifically denounce the white nationalists and neo-Nazis because they're seeking to tie the president to those racist groups.
"This is about violence between two hate groups with no association with Donald Trump or the Republican Party, but the media is doing everything it can to associate the Nazis and the skinheads and the white supremacists with not just Trump, but the Republican Party," Limbaugh explained. "That's why the Republican Party, everybody in it ran to the microphones and condemned it. They did everything, 'cause they know that if they don't go out and say that, the Drive-Bys (mainstream media) and everybody else on the left are gonna do everything they can to associate this with the Republican Party."
Limbaugh pointed out that both "reactionary fringe groups" – neo-Nazis and Antifa – are actually extreme leftists and are not aligned with Republicans at all.
"The fact remains that on the line of ideological trace, both of these groups are extreme leftists," he said. "The Nazis were not on the right of anything, and white supremacists are not on the right of anything. All of these groups are to the left of center. But the Republican Party knows that they had to come out and condemn this or else ..."
Charlottesville is Ferguson. Charlottesville is Baltimore. It's going to be used as an excuse for the media to smear their political enemies. Trump first, conservatives second, Republicans third. But this incident has nothing to do with Trump, it has nothing to do with the Republican Party, and it has nothing to do with conservatism.
What it does have to do with is a minority of sick people drawn to sick fringe groups. White supremacists and the Nazis and the extremist far-left Antifa deserve each other. They're bound by hate. They’re both bound by racism, yet pretend they have nothing in common. By all means investigate what happened in Charlottesville. Who were the organizers? Who funded them? Nothing would surprise me with the Antifa. I want to know.
I want an in-depth investigation of just what happened and who these people are because we already know how these people operated during the Republican primaries at Trump rallies. We know they were bought and paid for and they were trained by a guy named Robert Creamer who is married to a Democrat member of Congress. George Soros is in the mix as well. But you’re not supposed to say any of this today. No, you can’t say this today. Today is reserved for 100% condemnation of Trump and his association with these right-wing — so-called "right-wing" fringe groups.
Police: 'We're leaving. It's too dangerous'
So where were the police amid this perfect storm of radical groups spewing hate and violence?
David Weigel at the left-leaning Washington Post reported that activists chanted "black lives matter" before violence broke out and a car plowed into the crowd.
"Chant BLM, and all of a sudden the cops don't care!" said Canadian reporter Faith Goldy, who was at the scene before the bloodshed. "Where are the riot police now?"
And Brittany Caine-Conley, a minister in training at Sojourners United Church of Christ, told the New York Times: "There was no police presence. We were watching people punch each other; people were bleeding all the while police were inside of barricades at the park, watching. It was essentially just brawling on the street and community members trying to protect each other."
Police on the scene, who were decked out in riot gear, were reportedly told "not to intervene until given the command to do so," according to the ACLU of Virginia.
Fox News correspondent Doug McKelway said law-enforcement officials "were sitting idly by" and began pulling away as the violence began, telling him, "We're leaving. It's too dangerous":
We are now beginning to hear criticism bubble up on all sides of this event about the initial slow response by the police. When I got out of my car yesterday in Charlottesville about 10:30 in the morning you knew this was a bad scene and bad things were going to be happening because people were congregating at Lee Park and Emancipation Park wearing helmets, body armor, carrying big heavy sticks. Nobody was intent on peace here from either side. People were intent on causing havoc and causing damage. And even as wounded were being brought out of the park, police were sitting idly by. I was standing off a cordoned off area where the police had set up as a staging area, the state police, and they said you can come in here this is a safe area. But when the tear gas started to fly, thrown by protesters, the police themselves began to evacuate then. I asked the guy who was in charge, "Where you going?" He said, "We're leaving. It's too dangerous." They had a chance to nip this thing in the bud and they chose not to.
"Chose not to," Limbaugh repeated, questioning law enforcement's apparent decision to not intervene.
Who wanted this (Charlottesville violence) to happen? I firmly believe there's an answer to that, and I would hope that an investigation would uncover that information because this need not have happened. Somebody thought they would benefit from this, just like somebody thought they would benefit from Ferguson, just like somebody or some people thought they would benefit from Baltimore.
Somebody thought they would benefit from this. That's why this happened. The cops let it happen. Somebody told them to stand down. I don't believe that a police force in unison chickened out and ran for the tall grass once the protesters started throwing tear gas. There are just a lot of unanswered questions about this. The media wants it to be a certain way, and so that's their narrative. The media narrative is that a bunch of skinhead, neo-Nazi, Klan members decided to march in Virginia in protest of removing Civil War statues such as Robert E. Lee.
And then some very peaceful, progressive, anti-bigot and anti-racist mainstream Americans showed up to protest the people who wanted to defend Civil War monuments and the deranged Klan and the white supremacists then started killing the peaceful, progressive, average, ordinary American citizens. That is the narrative that the media wants everybody to believe. In fact, there were two opposite, opposing, warring factions: Those made up of the Nazis and skinheads and the white supremacists and the Antifa.
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George Soros: Removing Confederate symbols is '1st step'
Meanwhile, a nationwide effort is underway to remove Confederate statues and symbols from government grounds across America. The effort is supported by leftist billionaire and Open Society Foundation founder George Soros.
In August 2015, Soros tweeted: "Removing racist symbols like the Confederate flag is a first step in dismantling racist systems."
It's unclear whether Soros-backed agitators played a role in the Charlottesville violence Saturday. However, Soros has a long history of supporting leftist agitators. Breitbart reported a hacked memo revealed Soros' Open Society contributed $650,000 to assist the Black Lives Matter movement during the 2015 Baltimore unrest following the death of Freddie Gray. The Washington Times reported that Black Lives Matter received more than $33 million in grants from Soros' Open Society Foundations and Center for American Progress. Soros' Open Society also provided funds to the Occupy Wall Street movement and illegal-alien "DREAMers."
One group that has advocated for removing Confederate symbols across America is Color of Change, which was co-founded by Obama's former green-jobs czar, Van Jones, and Huffington Post contributor James Rucker. The group has launched a new petition titled, "Take Em ALL Down: Remove Every Confederate Symbol in America."
Color of Change and its parent organization, Citizen Engagement Laboratory, has received $550,000 from Soros' Open Society Foundation since 2009, according to Activist Facts.
We cannot allow these white supremacist terrorists to intimidate us from confronting and working to dismantle systemic white supremacy. Confederate statues are more than a mere symbol of a heritage but instead, they are an assertion of the continued imposition of white supremacy and its current political power. Terrorists in Charlottesville understood this and were willing to kill in the name of this, we must be determined to persist in the face of this white supremacist terror.
We must work to end the influence of today's White supremacists, removing all Confederate statues would be one step among many in sending the message that we are no longer honoring white supremacy at a societal level. We've already seen progress in Tampa and New Orleans, where Confederate symbols are being removed by Black-led organizing in the face of sustained white supremacist opposition. Join with me today and pledge to work to remove all Confederate statues in America.
Cities, states take action on Confederate symbols
Now several states are planning to remove the public monuments.
In Nashville Monday, protesters called for removal of a bust of Confederate Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest at the state capitol, the Tennessean reported.
In Jacksonville, Florida, the president of the city council, Anna Lopez Brosche, is calling on the city to "develop an appropriate plan of action" to relocate all Confederate symbols to museums.
In Gainesville, Florida, crews removed a Confederate memorial Monday that had been dedicated to men in the area who served in the Civil War and lost their lives fighting.
Maryland House Speaker Michael E. Busch is targeting a statue of former Supreme Court Justice Roger B. Taney, who ruled against Dred Scott in 1857. The statue is located in front of the statehouse. Busch told the Baltimore Sun Monday that "it's the appropriate time to remove it." On Monday, Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh pledged to remove Confederate monuments.
And Lexington, Kentucky, Mayor Jim Gray said he will make an announcement next week concerning an effort there to remove two statues of Confederate figures – one of Confederate Gen. John Hunt Morgan and another of Confederate Secretary of War John C. Breckinridge, who was also the 14th vice president of the United States – from the grounds of a former courthouse.
On Sunday evening, protesters in Atlanta, Georgia, spray-painted a statue of a Confederate soldier. And in Durham, North Carolina, protesters toppled a statue of a Confederate soldier outside the old county courthouse.
Now, white nationalists have announced their plans to hold more protests in other states in response to the nationwide effort to remove Confederate symbols.
Richard Spencer is seeking permission to speak at the University of Florida, Bloomberg reported. White nationalist Preston Wiginton has announced that he will hold a "White Lives Matter" rally at Texas A&M University in September.