Homeland Security: More 'Lone Wolves' Circulating in U.S.
Growing anger at the government fuels a pattern of anti-U.S. extremists.
WASHINGTON, March 6, 2010 — -- The man who opened fire at the Pentagon Thursday is part of a growing pattern in the U.S., according to the Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. John Patrick Bedell is described as an angry "lone wolf."
Bedell, according to family and friends, was mentally ill and a marijuana user. But he also had extreme views about the government, and he laid out those feelings in audio postings on the Internet.
"When governments are able to confiscate the resources of their citizens to fund schemes that only need to be justified by lies and deception, enormous disasters can result," he said in one post.
There has been a lone wolf attack against the government in each of the first three months of this year. In February, Joseph Stack, infuriated with the Internal Revenue Service, made a suicide flight in his plane into the agency's offices in Austin, Texas. One IRS worker was killed.
In January, Johnny Lee Wicks lost a case in court appealing a cut in his Social Security benefits. Wicks opened fire in the courthouse killing a security guard. Wicks was shot dead by other guards.
Napolitano talked about these "lone wolves" just a week before the Pentagon shooting.
"We have seen an increase in the lone wolf type attacks, which, from a law enforcement and investigation perspective, are the most challenging. Why? Because by definition they're not conspiring. They're not using the phones, the computer networks, or any -- they're not talking with others any other way that we might get some inkling about what is being planned," the secretary told a House of Representatives sub-committee.
But a leading civil rights group says there has also been an alarming increase in the number of organized hate groups. The
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