UPDATE – It was just announced that the FBI had arrested a suspect, Cesar Sayoc – a 56 year old Floridian man. Rather predictably, he has pictures on his Facebook of Trump rallies, and his van was covered in anti-Hillary and anti-CNN stickers. However the story rolls out from this point, we should remember the initial reporting of the facts, and confused narrative threads. Because there’s a decent chance many things listed in this article will soon be memory-holed.
Two days ago, suspicious packages were allegedly delivered to the homes of George Soros, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Later that day, and into the next, more people were “targeted”: Eric Holder, John Brennan, Robert De Niro, CNN. The list is still growing.
So far, no one has claimed any credit for the packages, and none of the alleged bombs have gone off, or even got anywhere near their respective targets. Fortunately, no one has been hurt.
Despite the total silence from investigators, on the subject of blame…the media reaction was as immediate as it was predictable. Within hours social media had dubbed the incident #MAGAbomber, using the acronym of Trump’s campaign slogan (Make America Great Again) to assign blame to Trump. The corporate media were not far behind.
The Guardian has run three different opinion pieces about this, virtually identical but for the by-line, plus an anonymous editorial. They all blame Trump’s “violent rhetoric” for this “terror attack”. The Huffington Post and CNN agree. As does Alexander Soros in the New York Times (that last one is especially jarring given their short story revelling in the idea of President Trump being assassinated).
The really interesting part of this incident, though, is the level of division in the media coverage. For the first time in a really long time there is a true split in the media over the narrative of a “terrorist” attack – with many mainstream voices on the “right” calling this a false flag attack to whip up Democrat support prior to the mid-term elections next month.
Whatever the truth is, and however the official narrative congeals itself into a rotten whole in the coming days, there are definitely some odd things about the situation.
The success rate – None of the bombs went off. Not one. We’re over a dozen deep in bombs now, not one explosion.
The ISIS flag – the only publicly released picture of a “device” so far is the one addressed to “John Brenan” (sic). It seemed to have a picture of John Brennan’s face on it, alongside an ISIS flag. Although some people claim it’s not a real ISIS flag, but a pastiche. ISIS flags, real or fake, are easy to find online, so it doesn’t point to blame, and ISIS have not taken responsibility.
The postage – each alleged bomb was posted in identical packaging, a padded envelope, with 6 identical flag stamps. None of the photos released so far have appeared to carry a postmark from the US Postal Service either.
The non-bomb – Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York, claimed to have received a bomb. The NYPD later revealed that was not true, he had instead been sent something “unrelated to other devices”. They never said what the item was, or how they knew it was unrelated:
Strange mistakes – several of the packages had very simple factual and/or spelling errors. John Brennan and Joe Biden had their names incorrectly spelled. The state of the return address was “FLORIDS” rather than Florida. John Brennan’s “bomb” was sent to CNN, when Brennan more often works for MSNBC.
What does all of this mean? As usual we at OffG are watching and waiting for evidence, rather than leaping to conclusions. It could be a Democratic false-flag to stir up pre-election sympathy and further demonise Trump. It could be a move to distract people from the US pulling out of the INF treaty or the increasingly bizarre Khashoggi story. My personal feeling is that this is meant for a domestic American audience rather than an international one. It doesn’t feel like it has the legs to run a great distance, but who knows?
The press reaction bears watching, though. Though pseudo-leftwing voices are currently all blaming the POTUS for creating this climate, the mention of “Russian bots” should have everyone on social media – and especially the alternate news media – on edge. This has all the hallmarks of an issue that will be used as an excuse to empower governments and corporations to “banish hate from their platforms” or something similar.
Expect a fresh rush of censorship and social-media bans in the coming weeks.
I will leave you with our now traditional list of unanswered questions:
- What’s the story behind Gov. Cuomo’s “non-bomb”?
- Why did the alleged bomber use color coded wires and digital clocks, when these are hallmarks of “movie bombs”, rather than reality?
- Why did the alleged bomber send the bombs in envelopes which betray the size, shape and feel of their contents, rather than cardboard boxes which would hide it?
- How come none of the packages appear to be postmarked? Were they delivered by private courier or by hand instead? In that case, why the stamps?
- Why is nobody in the press discussing the “ISIS flag” found on one the devices? Is the flag an attempt to frame to ISIS, or an honest claim of responsibility?
- Either way – doesn’t its presence indicate whoever made the “bomb” was fairly sure it was going to be seen, and therefore, was not going to blow up?
- Will the right-wing media “come around” and stop discussing the idea this was a false-flag?