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Tag: Oklahoma

Two ATF Agents Wounded in Oklahoma Shooting While Trying to Arrest Suspect

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Two ATF agents were wounded in Oklahoma after trying to arrest a man wanted in a shooting, the Associated Press reports.

The agents, whose names were not revealed, were treated and released and sustained no serious injuries.

Seventeen-year-old Henry Jackson was shot and killed by local police after he opened fire on them at 9:30 p.m. Thursday in Ardmore, according to police.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Stejskal: “Mark From Michigan”: Dumb and Dumber

Greg Stejskal served as an FBI agent for 31 years and retired as resident agent in charge of the Ann Arbor office.

Mark Koernke

By Greg Stejskal
ticklethewire.com
Mark and I never really hit it off.

I first met Mark Koernke in the late ‘80s. Gene Ward, a fellow FBI agent, had asked me to accompany him on an interview of Koernke. We met with Koernke in his basement office at Alice Lloyd Hall, a University of Michigan dormitory, where he was a janitor.

Ward was investigating a potential hate crime, the painting of some racial epithets on a home. It had been suggested that Koernke might know something about it. Koernke denied that he had any knowledge, and we concluded that he most probably had no connection to the graffiti painting.

During the course of the interview, Koernke made it known that he had been an intelligence officer in the Army, and in addition he was a counter intelligence expert. He said, he continued to train US military units regarding tactics of foreign militaries. I made no secret of my skepticism of Koernke’s background and questioned some of his conspiracy theories he apparently felt compelled to share with us.

This all pre-dated Koernke’s semi-notoriety, later he would have a national following as “Mark from Michigan” and his own radio show “The Intelligence Report.”

He was an early purveyor of the “New World Order,” which he believed was a world-wide conspiracy. As best as I’ve been able to understand, the New World Order involves the takeover of the US by the United Nations which is fronting for some insidious international cabal that wants to institute international socialism. Part of this conspiracy was the building of secret concentration camps in the western US to house those who would be unwilling to accept the New World Order. Among other things, “black helicopters” were being used to spy on Americans.

The black helicopters and Mark from Michigan became synonymous. The New World Order was supposed to have happened by now, but it hasn’t and maybe that’s because Koernke has been on watch. I think Koernke perceived himself to be the “intellectual” underpinning of the militia movement – sort of a latter day Thomas Paine.

Anyway our paths continued to cross. There were the times I saw him surveilling the federal building parking lot. I guess he was trying to log our movements for intelligence purposes. I would wave to him, and he would hide.

During the late 80s and early 90s the militia movement grew dramatically. The high-water mark came soon after the bombing of the Murray federal building in Oklahoma City.

Many people in the movement were shocked and disgusted by the slaughter of innocent people including children. They did not want to be identified with a philosophy that condoned such acts. (In contrast Koernke espoused the theory that the government actually did the bombing to set-up Timothy McVeigh and to destroy records that proved the “Gulf War Syndrome” was real. He didn’t really explain why those records were in Oklahoma City.)

As the militia movement diminished, there were some internal conflicts.

In 1997, in Michigan, one member of the militia was murdered and other members were charged with the murder. Although Koernke was never believed to be involved, he was subpoenaed to be a witness. When a process server showed up on Koernke’s porch, an argument ensued.

Greg Stejskal

Apparently Koernke threatened the server with a rifle resulting in Koernke being charged with assault with a dangerous weapon. Koernke’s trial date was in May, 1998, but Koernke didn’t appear for the trial, and a bench warrant was issued for his arrest. In June a federal fugitive warrant for Koernke was issued based on my affidavit stating there was reason to believe he had fled from Michigan.

While Koernke was a fugitive, he continued his shortwave radio broadcasts from various undisclosed locations. He mentioned me several times in unflattering terms. He also said, that unless the federal charges were dropped, “a lot of their (FBI) people might get hurt.”

The following July a Michigan State Police helicopter was searching for marijuana growing plots in rural Barry County (just north of Battle Creek, Michigan). The helicopter crew observed a pickup truck, a man and a woman near an abandoned mobile home.

When the helicopter came in for a closer look, the man, Koernke, began running. I don’t know if the helicopter was black, but it must have been unsettling for Koernke to have a helicopter seemingly coming for him. Koernke then jumped into a shallow lake where only his head was showing. (Presumably Koernke was looking for a hollow reed so he could breathe while submerged like in so many old movies.)

Read more »

FBI Sees Unusual Spike in Bank Robberies in Oklahoma

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Bank robberies are spiking in Oklahoma.

According to the FBI, bank robberies have nearly tripled in the state, from 23 last year to more than 60 this year, KFOR reports.

It’s unclear what caused the unusual spike, but the FBI said two-thirds of the robberies have led to arrests.

 

Column: The History of April 19th: American Revolution, Waco, Oklahoma Bombing

Greg Stejskal served as an FBI agent for 31 years and retired as resident agent in charge of the Ann Arbor office.
 
By Greg Stejskal
ticklethewire.com

Listen my children, and you shall hear

Of the midnight ride of Paul Revere,

On the eighteenth of April, in Seventy Five….

Longfellow’s poem forever immortalized Paul Revere’s ride. What the poem does not say is that Revere’s mission that night was to warn Samuel Adams and John Hancock that British soldiers were coming to Lexington to arrest them. It was after midnight, April 19th, when Revere arrived in Lexington and warned Adams and Hancock. Revere also aroused the country side, and that morning the “Minute Men” met the British regulars on Lexington green. No one knows who fired the first shot- “the shot heard around the world”. But on that morning, April 19, 1775, the American Revolution began.

Paul Revere/istock photo

Paul Revere/istock photo

In a perverse twist of fate, on April 19, 1993, it is the 51st day of a siege at the Branch Davidian compound, also known as Mt Carmel, outside of Waco, Texas. It is to be the last day of the siege, a culmination of a series of bad decisions and missed opportunities.

The siege began on February 28th. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) had gone to the Davidian compound to execute search warrants. The warrants were based on affidavits stating the Davidians possessed certain illegal weapons to include fully automatic weapons and components to convert semi-automatic weapons into fully automatic. Some of the Davidians were known to have a propensity for violence including their leader, David Koresh, who had changed his name from Vernon Howell. There had been a power struggle a few years earlier within the Branch Davidians and a gun fight had ensued. The history of the Branch Davidians and how they ended up here, led by Koresh is a long story and won’t be told here. Suffice it to say, Koresh became the leader and subsequently claimed to be a messiah, who could procreate with any women followers irrespective of their age or marital status. The group embraced an apocalyptic philosophy, which relied heavily on the Book of Revelation.

The ATF had been surveilling the compound for several weeks prior to the raid from a home across the road. They had also placed an undercover (UC) agent within the Davidians. However, the surveillance was compromised, and at some point Koresh learned of the UC agent. In addition one of the Davidians was the local postman. On the morning of the ATF raid, a TV crew asked the postman for directions to the compound as they had learned there was to be a raid. The postman gave them directions and took the news of the impending raid back to the compound.

Read more »

Muslim U.S. Citizen Claims He’s Being Harassed by Feds, Local Authorities

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

 A Muslim man from Oklahoma claims he’s being harassed by the FBI after he was twice barred from flying from Qatar to visit his sick mother in the United States, the Associated Press reports.

Now that he’s back home in the U.S., Saadiq Long says local and federal authorities are trying to interview, including during a traffic stop when he and his sister were ordered to exit the car at gunpoint and were handcuffed, the AP wrote.

The 43-year-old man is an Air Force veteran and U.S. citizen.

Editorial: Homeland Security Grants Misspent, Steered Away from Terrorism

Ediotial
New York Times 

It was no surprise that a fierce budget hawk like Senator Tom Coburn, Republican of Oklahoma, pounced on ridiculous grants doled out by the Department of Homeland Security supposedly to help local police and fire departments prepare for terrorist attacks. Mr. Coburn’s recent report on the department’s decade-long, $7 billion program, called the Urban Areas Security Initiative, offers many depressing examples of locally misspent money.

There was an armored car in New Hampshire whose duties included patrolling the annual pumpkin festival. Car-bomb barriers and surveillance cameras, purchased by authorities in Peoria, Ariz., to protect spring-training fans. License plate reading machines in Louisiana used to track car thieves. An $88,000 truck-mounted, piercingly loud device for crowd control in Pittsburgh. And $1,000 fees for first responders to attend a “zombie Apocalypse” demonstration at a counterterrorism conference in California to learn how to handle chaotic events, with actors playing the living dead.

To read more click here.

STORIES OF OTHER INTEREST

OK Lobbyist Wants Feds to Pay Legal Fees in FBI Sting

Shoshanna Utchenik
ticklethewire.com

Oklahoman lobbyist Andy Skeith is slinking out of a corruption trial scott-free… except for $141,000 in legal fees. He’d like the federal government to cover his costs. Sound crazy?

Depends who’s judging.

The FBI set up a fake company and gave Skeith $10,000 to make illegal contributions to 2 Okahoma state lawmakers.

The judge tossed all the charges against Skeith. His attorney called the case against his client ridiculous and wants the feds to pay the legal fees.

To read the full story  click here.

FBI and ATF Investigating 3 Explosions in Oklahoma

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