Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Trump's gun-toting 'guards' to WI? Others served GOP allies here before

Imitating his favorite despots, Trump has dispatched unaccountable armed troops to beat and snatch protesters on Portland streets.

And Team Trump has threatened to send Trump's taxpayer-paid personal army to Milwaukee during the Democratic National Convention where they could provoke violence and stage manage GOP election propaganda.

If armed outsiders do show up in Milwaukee it would be thesecond time in recent years that big-caliber guns carried by outsiders with sketchy credentials were coordinated in Wisconsin for GOP partisan interests during a campaign.

Do you remember when, without warning, armed guards in forest-blending camouflage uniforms appeared in the North woods ostensibly to secure the perimeter on state-subsidized land which Walker and the GOP had been ram-rodding?

Photos of three guards in masks and camouflage carrying semi-automatic rifles made a splash in local news and went viral on the Internet, stoking a heated debate over the proposed Gogebic Taconite mine. 
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker pushed controversial legislation that fast-tracked the mine by weakening environmental regulations and superseding local government control. The armed guards personified local citizens' sense that outside forces were seizing control of the land in Wisconsin where the GTac mine would go.
Armed guard from AZ Bulletproof Securities in WI (Source: The UpTake)
"We are calling on you to immediately remove the heavily armed masked commando security forces currently hired to protect your company's property in the Penokee Hills," wrote Wisconsin state senator Bob Jauch (D) and Rep. Janet Bewley (D) in a July 8 letter. "The images are horrifying. ... These kinds of security forces are common in Third World countries but they don't belong in Northern Wisconsin.

The mining company's owner also quietly sent Walker's 2012 recall campaign $700,000 through a third-party conduit designated by Walker to receive the money, records showed.

Further, do you remember that two key WI GOP state legislators at the time but who are now serving in Congress - Glenn Grothman and Tom Tiffany - tried unsuccessfully to assist the armed guards' mission with a special state law - 

Bill would bar public from forest around mine site
A heavily armed, camouflaged security detail guarding the site was pulled out in July for lack of proper licensing from the state, but was approved to resume work in early August. 
- even though the forest land had received substantial state tax breaks in exchange for public access to the acreage?

Mike Wiggins, the region's Bad River tribal chairman, succinctly summed up the guards' presence at the time, and his words fit Trump's troopers if they roll into Milwaukee:

“I’ve got two words: unjustified and unnecessary, Wiggins said.” 

No comments: