The anti-government Boogaloo Bois are regrouping ahead of next year's presidential elections after law enforcement nearly wiped out the militant movement, according to a new report.
Hawaiian shirt-wearing members of the loosely organized group were implicated in a number of shootings, particularly around protests over George Floyd's police murder, and implicated in plots to sabotage power grids and a conspiracy to kidnap Michigan's governor, but social media companies finally disrupted their communications and the FBI started rounding them up, reported Vice News.
“The fact of the matter is the FBI won,” a once-prominent Boogaloo from Texas recently posted online.
But some members who drifted away from the movement are returning, while new members are being recruited with fantasies of an "armed revolt" against police and other government agents in what they see as a fight against tyranny, and their once hard-to-define ideology has been whittled down to a 22-page manifesto.
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“The difference between now and 2020 is they have their ideology figured out,” said Katie Paul, director of the watchdog Tech Transparency Project. “I'm extremely concerned because with these new Boog groups, there's no longer any effort to appear to be careful in terms of what they're posting. They're going straight to the ‘kill tyrants,' ‘kill congresspeople’ memes.”
The group's reemergence seems to coincide with the FBI search of Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort looking for classified materials, which triggered a wave of violent threats from his supporters, and they remain angry at the bureau for infiltrating their ranks and believe federal agents fomented the Jan. 6 insurrection.
“The people that were arrested, the people that were charged, they just made us more angry, they made us more hateful towards the government,” said Mike Dunn, a former U.S. Marine who joined the movement three years ago but left after the crackdown. “That hatred for the U.S. government is just sitting there. We’re thinking. We’re learning to be smart.”
Dunn worked for a while at a county jail after leaving the movement and recently returned from fighting against Russia as a volunteer soldier for Ukraine, but he was drawn back into the Boogaloo Bois to fight against proposed gun safety legislation, and he said at least 100 members were training for armed action if that law is passed.
“We all die there in the street, at the hands of the National Guard or whatever," Dunn told Vice News. "That would spark a revolution in the state of Virginia, which would spill over into other states. I don’t see it as a lone wolf act of somebody blowing up a building or an attack on anything, but as a defense of liberty, creating martyrs in the name of the Constitution and freedom.”
“We will go to war,” he added. “We will fight, we will die, and we will kill.”