Rakem Balogun was arrested in December 2017 outside of his apartment in Dallas, Texas. He recalled being awoken in the middle of the night and taken outside by FBI agents while in his underwear.
Balogun, 34, told The Guardian he was under surveillance for at least two years because of Facebook posts he wrote criticizing the police. He was jailed for about half a year without bail, he says.
“It’s tyranny at its finest,” Balogun said. “I have not been doing anything illegal for them to have surveillance on me. I have not hurt anyone or threatened anyone.”
Despite not making any threats, Balogun says he was accused of being a threat to law enforcement and of illegally owning a firearm. That charge was the result of a 2007 misdemeanor domestic assault case in Tennessee. But a judge dismissed that charge this month.
A report (obtained by Foreign Policy) was released in August titled “Black Identity Extremists Likely Motivated to Target Law Enforcement Officers.” The report cites the Michael Brown shooting and the subsequent decision not to indict the officer who killed him as evidence that “Black Identity Extremists” (BIEs) are likely to target law enforcement.
When it comes to Black social justice groups, the FBI’s motto is, “Monitor now, ask questions later.”
Balogun, who was born Christopher Daniels, first popped up on the FBI’s radar after he was seen in a video that appeared on Infowars, an extreme right-wing website ran by conspiracy theorist Alex Jones.
“They’re using a conspiracy theorist video as a reason to justify their tyranny” Balogun questioned. “That is a big insult.”
Special agent Aaron Keighley admitted in court that the video is where the FBI first found Balogun. Keighley did not mention anything Balogun did specifically at the rally, only referring to anti-police sentiments Balogun shared on Faecbook.
Despite his release from jail, Balogun called the entire ordeal “a nightmare for my entire family.”
“[Balogun] he lost his vehicle, job and home; his son was forced to move and transfer schools and Balogun missed much of the first year of his newborn daughter’s life,” The Guardian reported.
After white Nazis march on Charlottesville, a white man shoots 500 people in Las Vegas and another white man slaughters 26 people in a Texas church, the white people running the FBI and DOJ are concerned about “Black Identity Extremism.”
The FBI report expresses fear of Black activists.
“The FBI assesses it is very likely Black Identity Extremist (BIE) perceptions of police brutality against African Americans spurred an increase in premeditated, retaliatory lethal violence against law enforcement and will very likely serve as justification for such violence,” according to the document.
Today, the FBI continues its attempt to create fear and paranoia surrounding racial justice movements.
The FBI’s extra attention to Black activists comes despite statistics suggesting they should focus their efforts elsewhere. According to the Government Accountability Office (GAO), 73 percent of violent extremist attacks that have taken place since Sept. 12, 2001, were carried out by far right-wing extremist groups.
A Department of Homeland Security Field Analysis Report (FAR) from September 2016 did study white supremacist protests — but the language is strikingly different.
The document is titled: “California: Recent Violent Clashes Suggest Heightened Threat Environment at Lawfully Organized White Supremacist Events.” The report followed two white supremacist rallies that took place in Chicago earlier that year. According to DHS, violence occurred thanks to counterprotesters who attended the event.
In Sacramento, “violent anti-fascists, including anarchist extremist elements, attacked a group of white supremacists who gathered for a legally permitted rally.”
“There are a number of potential indicators of planned criminal or violent activities at white supremacist events. Some of these behavioral indicators may be constitutionally protected activities and should be supported by additional facts to justify increased suspicion,” the report states.