These US Marines received 'security clearances' despite alleged participation in the Capitol riot: report
The FBI has reported that far-right extremist groups, from white supremacists to Christian nationalists to militias, have been aggressively trying to recruit members of the U.S. military. Some of the extremists who attacked the U.S. Capitol Building on January 6, 2021 were veterans, and according to journalist James Risen, that includes members of the U.S. Marine Corps who enjoyed “security clearances” despite their alleged participation in that attack.
In an article published by The Intercept on February 7, Risen cites Sgt. Joshua Abate, Cpl. Micah Coomer and Sgt. Dodge Dale Hellonen as three marines who allegedly took part in the Capitol riot.
According to Risen, “Following his alleged participation in the 2021 insurrection, Sgt. Joshua Abate, a special communication signals analyst, was assigned to the Marine Cryptologic Support Battalion, which acts as a liaison between the Marines and the NSA at Fort Meade…. Two other marines charged with entering the Capitol alongside Abate on January 6 were also given sensitive new intelligence assignments within the Marine Corps after the insurrection, according to statements from the Corps. Sgt. Dodge Dale Hellonen was assigned to the 3rd Marine Raider Support Battalion, which provides intelligence support to the Marine Forces Special Operations Command at Camp LeJeune, North Carolina.”
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Coomer, Risen adds, “was assigned to the Marines 1st Radio Battalion, which provides signals intelligence and electronic warfare support for the Marine Expeditionary Force based in Camp Pendleton, California.” Abate, Hellonen and Coomer, according to Risen, are all “highly trained in communications and signals intelligence.”
The journalist points out that their “assignment to highly sensitive intelligence jobs after they allegedly joined in the January 6 riot has not been previously reported.”
“All three were charged last month in connection with their roles as part of the violent mob that forced members of Congress to flee for their lives and delay certification of the 2020 election results,” according to Risen. “Abate, Hellonen and Coomer are accused of offenses, including trespassing, disorderly conduct, and illegal parading or picketing in a restricted building.”
The U.S. Marine Corps, according to Risen, has “confirmed” that Abate, Hellonen and Coomer “were all transferred to new roles after January 6, 2021” and that Abate and Hellonen “also received promotions in rank following the Capitol riot.”
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“The reassignments raise serious new questions about the ability of both the military and the U.S. intelligence community to identify right-wing extremists in their midst,” Risen warns. “Since the Capitol riot, the Pentagon has claimed that it has been trying to root out extremists, but there have been few signs that the problem has yet been reduced or even that the scale of the threat has been adequately measured. What’s more, the Pentagon’s efforts are now being impeded by congressional Republicans, who are seeking to block initiatives to oust right-wing radicals from the military.”
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Read The Intercept’s full article at this link.
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